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So a little back story about my DIY floating shelves…. When it comes to decorating my home, I can never make anything easy. My husband would love for me to just go buy something, but I always want something just a bit different. I had two empty spaces next to my fireplace that were proving to be tricky to work with. They aren’t that deep so a lot of furniture stuck out passed the fireplace. I wanted something other than two bookshelves, mostly because the ones I really liked were way out of my budget. I loved the idea of floating shelves but the ready-made ones I found weren’t substantial enough for the look I was trying to achieve. I talked my dad (always up for a project) and my husband (kicking and screaming) into building me what I wanted.
When I started this floating shelf project, I had no idea I’d be venturing into the blogging world. I apologize there aren’t more pictures, but I’ll do my best to explain the process from start to finish.
I made the process easy on them by having the people at Lowe’s Home Improvement cut the plywood pieces for me to the exact size I wanted, 12″ x 41″. That’s the size that worked best for my space, leaving 5″ on each side. I used nicer, smooth plywood for the top so it would be easier to dust and used thinner, cheaper plywood for the bottom of the shelves to save money. My dad and husband made the frames that hold the shelves out of 2 x 4’s. The supports looked like big letter E’s (see picture) that were screwed into the wall, making sure to hit studs whenever possible for maximum support. After the supports were mounted, we added the top and bottom pieces of plywood. The last part was to cut the facing pieces to fit. For the facing pieces, we used solid maple 1 x 6 because we wanted the fronts to look more finished. If you like rustic, you can save some money by using something else. Keep in mind that dust sticks to rough wood and so does link from a dusting cloth.
The final touch was some nice, dark stain. My dad and husband are very handy so this project only took about 2 hours to complete with the exception of the stain. The staining process took me the longest. If I had it to do over again, I would have taped the walls off after adding the supports and before putting the plywood on. It was a little hard to get the tape behind the shelves so I didn’t get stain on the walls.
(If you’re looking for plans for other great woodworking projects, Click Here!)