How to Build DIY Floating Shelves

DIY floating shelves

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Want to make your home look great and get more storage? Making your own DIY floating shelves is a perfect weekend project. These shelves look cool and can hold your decor, plants, and books. You can put them in any room, like the bathroom and kitchen, or the bedroom, living room, or office.

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In this guide, we’ll show you how to make your own custom wood shelving. It will fit your space and style, whether you like a rustic, industrial, or modern vibe.

By the time you finish this tutorial, you’ll be ready to build floating shelves that are both pretty and practical. They will let you show off your personal style and keep things tidy in your home. Let’s begin!

Materials and Tools Needed

To make your custom DIY floating shelves, gather specific materials and tools. Here are the key things you’ll need:

Wood Materials

Your shelves will start with strong Southern yellow pine boards. They should be 8 x 1.5 x 96 inches. Also, get a 1/2-inch oak dowel that’s 36 inches long for hidden support.


Keep your shelves in place with 3-inch wood screws and 3/4- to 1-inch wood screws. These screws will secure the shelves and support the dowel rods.

Finishing Supplies

For a great, durable finish, have Minwax Gel Stain, a wood conditioner, and spray polyurethane ready. These will make your shelves look good and last longer.

Tools Required

You’ll need power tools like a miter saw, table saw, drill, and impact driver. Don’t forget essentials like sandpaper, clamps, and a measuring tape for accurate and smooth work.

With these materials and tools, you’re all set to create your DIY floating shelves. They’ll add style and storage to your bathroom, kitchen, living room, or office.

Preparing the Wood

Starting your DIY floating shelves means getting the wood ready first. This is key for shelves that are strong, exact, and look great. The steps include cutting the lumber, making dowel holes, and sizing the wood right.

Cutting the Lumber

First, cut the Southern yellow pine into three pieces. Ensure your cuts are straight and exact. A miter or circular saw will do the job. Make sure all your parts are equal for a perfect shelf fit.

Drilling Dowel Holes

After cutting, it’s time to drill. Cut your oak dowel into 4-inch pieces. Then, mark your pine boards. Measure 2 inches from each end and the middle. Drill to make holes for your dowel to fit.

Ripping the Lumber

Now, you’ll shape your shelves. Rip the pine boards longways with care. A circular or table saw is needed. Cut to a depth of 1.5 inches for the right shelf look. Take your time for clean cuts.

How to make DIY floating shelves - easy weekend project

Assembling the Shelves

Once you’ve got the wood ready, it’s time to start putting your DIY floating shelves together. You’ll shape the oak dowels and fix the shelves securely. Follow these steps to make strong and nice-looking wall shelves. They’ll be great in any room, like the bathroom, kitchen, bedroom, or even the office.

Shaping the Dowels

First, use sandpaper on the oak dowels to make them smooth. This makes them fit better in the pre-drilled holes. Then, hammer them through carefully. Make sure they’re in the right spot and straight.

Securing with Screws

Now, find the center of the middle dowel and mark it. Put the shelf in place by that mark and clamp it. Before fixing the shelf, pre-drill a hole exactly there and add a screw. This makes the shelf more stable. It won’t move around or wobble later on.

With the dowels fixed and the center screw in, your shelves are almost done. You just need to add a beautiful wood stain and a protective sealant. These final steps bring your project to life.

DIY Floating Shelves

After making your custom floating shelves, add the final touches. This makes sure they look beautiful and last long. Just follow these easy steps:

Applying Wood Finish

Start by coating your shelves with a pre-stain wood conditioner. This stops any stain from looking uneven. Then, use Minwax Gel Stain for a deep, even color on the wood shelving. Apply one coat and let it fully dry.

Finish by adding two coats of spray-on polyurethane. This clear finish protects the wood from scratches. It also makes rustic shelves or industrial shelves shine. Let each coat dry before adding more.

Putting in effort to finish your DIY floating shelves really pays off. It gives them an amazing look and makes them last. You can enjoy them in your bathroom, kitchen, bedroom, living room, or office. Care and attention turn your DIY project into a useful and pretty part of your home.

Installation and Mounting

After you’ve readied your DIY floating shelves, now’s the fun part. Hang them up on your walls. It’s smart to attach them to wall studs. This makes sure they can handle heavy items without wobbling.

Locating Wall Studs

Start by finding the studs with a stud finder. Mark where these studs are, so you know where to attach your shelves. Then, you can drill holes and put up the support board.

Mounting Technique

Use 3-inch wood screws to fix the support board to the wall. Make sure it’s straight and matches the stud markings. Next, place your shelves on the dowel rods. Secure them by adding a screw in the middle of each shelf.


Creating your DIY floating shelves is both fun and beneficial. It makes your space look better and offers more room to store things. This guide helps you make wood shelving that’s just right for your style.

Remember, choosing the best wood and a good finish is key. This makes your wall-mounted shelves not only look great but also strong. So, they last a long time.

Whether you like rustic shelves or shelves for any room, we’ve got you. This guide makes it easy to create your floating shelves. And if you’re not a DIY person, grab some ready to install here. They’re perfect for showing off your decor, plants, or books.

Feel proud of what you’ve made. Adding these wall-mounted shelves can really change your home. Thanks to this guide, you’ll soon have unique shelves anyone would be happy to have.

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