If your entryway is too narrow for a table or bench, hang a slim shelf instead, and then use it to harbor mail and artwork. We topped a trio of sleek metal brackets with a rustic antique floorboard. Installing basic brackets and shelves is easy: Mount brackets to wall, trim shelf as desired, affix to top of brackets, and enjoy.
- Brackets (Convex Steel Bracket; $7 each, www.leevalleyhardware.com)
- Board (ours is antique from www.elmwoodreclaimedtimber.com)
- Level (4-foot is best)
- Electronic stud finder
- Tape measure
- Wall anchors (if needed)
- Begin by finding the location of the studs in your walls. Studs are generally placed 16 or 24 inches apart, measuring from center to center. With that in mind, once you've located one stud, finding the others is easy.
- Roll stud finder over the wall; when its light blinks green, it has located a stud. Mark that location for your first bracket. It's important to drill directly into the center of a stud.
- Measure out 3/4 inch from your center mark and draw vertical lines to represent the edges of the stud. You can add an X to make the center mark more visible.
- Use the stud finder again to find the locations of the remaining studs and mark for your shelf brackets. Remember, their locations will be either 16 or 24 inches from the center mark of your first stud.
- To align the marks (and the brackets) so they are straight and level, use a 4-foot level or laser-line level. Mark a horizontal line directly through the second and third fastener locations.
- Drill brackets to wall studs using screws or wall anchors appropriate to the weight of your board, its contents, and the type of walls (plaster or drywall). Not sure which to use? Ask your hardware store for assistance. The brackets come with holes in their backs for you to drill the screw through.
- Place board atop brackets. To fasten the board to brackets, drill screws up into the board through holes in the shelf bracket's top. If your wood is dense, first drill pilot holes to accept the screw more easily.
Get more easy how-tos from Home Depot's Storage 1-2-3, available at your local Home Depot Store.
Continued on page 2: Elegant Vintage for the Bedside