How to Hang Floating Shelves

Evelyn Long

Feb 1, 2023

floating shelves with decorations

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The modern decor of floating shelves almost looks like they are held up by magic. This amazing self-design allows you to incorporate shelves anywhere in your home while giving it a sleek, modern look. Although these shelves may be the perfect fit for your space, you may wonder how they work. Here is how to hang floating shelves on your wall.

Tools You Will Need

Before you jump the gun on installing your floating shelves, make sure you have all the following tools to ensure a proper setup. Your model may include specific hardware, so be sure to add any extra tools or steps as needed. This is what you will need.

  • Pencil
  • Stud finder
  • Level 
  • Drill and drill bit
  • Screwdriver 
  • Anchors, if needed

Step-By-Step Hanging Process

After acquiring all the appropriate tools, you are ready to start the hanging process. Remember to follow directions thoroughly and that hanging shelves can take some time. They are a great addition to your home or apartment for decoration or adding more space. Follow these steps to hang your floating shelves.

Step 1: Locate the Studs

If you are planning to have heavy things on your shelves or if it is a heavier shelf in general, you should install them directly onto the wall studs. You can use a stud finder in the area to find any studs. Using your pencil, make a light mark on the spots studs are located. 

Step 2: Find the Placement

You can determine where to hang your shelves by lining them up with the wall studs to ensure a secure hold. Grab your shelf and hold it in the place where you want it to be to outline. Then put it to the side and outline the breaker. Be sure to match up the bracket screw holes with the wall studs. Use a pencil to make the brackets screw holes on the wall. 

Step 3: Drill Holes for the Bracket

Grab your drill and choose a drill bit size that is the same as the screws. Drill the screw holes based on the markings you made in the last step. Depending on the material of your wall, you may need to use wall anchors instead. Common materials like drywall or plaster require an anchor. If a stud is present, there is no need for an anchor. 

Step 4: Install the Brackets

Line the brackets up with the screw holes and lightly screw them into the wall, be sure not to screw them in completely. Hold your level against the bracket to ensure it is straight. Once the brackets are level, you can fully screw them in. 

Step 5: Hang the Shelf

Once the bracket is on the wall, you are ready to install the shelf. Line up the holes on the shelf with the bracket posts. The bracket gets inserted into the back of the shelf, which gives the illusion that the shelf is floating. Some models have additional screws to include after the shelf is on— this is the time to do so. Once it is installed, clean up your space and you are ready to use your shelves. 

Test Your New Shelves 

Learning how to hang floating selves is an excellent tool for decorating your home. Tap into your creative side and find a way to reflect your style with your new floating shelves. 

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