Float On This Shelf…

Float On

Captain’s Log: Bathroom Update: Shelf It. Let’s jump right into this thing.

I wanted to add a floating shelf to my guest/teenager’s bathroom so we could keep towels handy, as well as add a smidge of décor.

Of course I could have purchased floating shelves from just about any home decorating store; but what would be the fun in that!?

Besides, I really wanted to learn how to DIY these shelves because the plan is to do a larger version of them in my laundry room. Might as well learn now with the hopes that later, the process will move more quickly.

Per usual…

I enrolled at Youtube University to scour through everyone making floating shelves. I landed on two that I felt were (1) doable and (2) didn’t require any tools beyond what was already in my possession (miter saw and drill). Those two accounts were Ana White and The Rehab Life. I ended up making the shelf found on the latter. Though the video was quite straight forward, I still had a few hiccups.

Garage floor math and cuttingGarage floor math and cutting

Garage floor math and miter saw cuts

My first shelf’s back board was slightly longer than what I needed it to be. This was caused by me cutting down one board and forgetting to cut down the other. I still continued traveling the path though because I think this can be saved! Plus, I really try not to waste much; everything can be used. NOTHING IS WASTED (for the most part; sometimes there are exceptions).

I made a second shelf, taking into account a few glitches along the way learned from my practice run. This floating shelf was made to be a tad bit longer. I’m thinking it may need to be wider; but for now, I am staying in the moment and being excited for MY FIRST BUILD!

Here’s what I used to make my floating shelf:

  • 1 in. x 6 in. x6 ft. Common board

  • 1 in. x 4 in. x6 ft. Some more common board

  • 2 in. x 2 in. x 4ft.

  • 2 inch trim head screws

  • 2 inch construction screws

  • wood filler

  • sanding block (I opted to use my orbital sander, starting with 120 grit and finishing out with a 180 grit). Honestly, I’m still learning about which grit is best. I’m going to take a 400 grit to smooth the shelf down a little more without being too harsh on the wood.

You’ll have to decide if you want to stain your shelf or paint it. I wanted a stain that was kind of a chalky white that would still allow some of the wood to show. At least, I thought I wanted this until I stained it and …Hated It.

I made all my cuts using my Dewalt compound miter saw. Although I didn’t use the same dimensions as those found on The Rehab Life’s youtube, I did use their easy to follow video instructions -adjusting for my specific measurements.

Using my trim head screws, I attached each end as viewed in the aforementioned video. Here’s where I put a spin on things and probably should have not taken this route. Taking away what Ana White did by using a nail gun to connect her shelf ends, I thought this would be ideal for me. Welp, turns out it wasn’t and I ended up going through the other side of my board. This mishap isn’t all that bad, but I will need to abandon the whole nail gun idea this go round. I’ll use my wire cutters to cut the hanging nail off.

After getting all trim nails screwed in, I’m ready to roll with my sanding. To cover where my trim screws were placed, as well as to cover up some minor construction flaws, I used wood filler. If you want to try making your own floating shelf, all items have been linked here. You can easily have it delivered to your front door!


Now the finale to it all… Using the same color used to paint my vanity, as well as the color used to make the stripes on the bathroom’s wall, I painted the floating shelf. I have a highlight bubble called “Floating Shelf” over on my Instagram feed so you can see the action. Do you think this is something you’d try? Tag me if you do give it a go; I’d love to see your results!

Ya girl, Kim!