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Twelve Creative Ideas for Wall Shelves

Wall Book Shelves

  1. Use wall shelving to create a unique, custom wall sculpture. Center small wall ledges above and below a larger shelf to create a circular "sculpture." Or hang four ledges of the same or various sizes in a column aligned on the left or right side, spaced approximately three to five inches apart.

  2. Use wall-mounted shelves as contemporary wall bookshelves. Hang five or six deep ledges of the same length on the wall approximately 10 to 12 inches apart. Or choose multi-tiered decorative wall shelves as another creative display option. Arrange a few books, vases and picture frames on the shelves for a very modern, clean look. Cover your books with simple, monotone paper for a uniform look.

  3. Create a low-cost blackboard in your home office, child's room or kitchen. Paint a wall or section of a wall with black chalkboard paint. Hang a wall ledge near the bottom of the chalkboard to hold colored chalk and an eraser. A great decorating idea for a child's bedroom!

  4. Hang a wall ledge above an unused fireplace as a makeshift mantle. Decorate your new mantle with coordinating candle holders or picture frames. Note: wall shelves are not recommended for working fireplaces.

  5. No fireplace? Hang a long, deep wall shelf above your sofa. This makes a great place to display picture frames and other table accents in your living room. For the holidays, decorate it with holiday stockings, evergreen garland, battery-operated lights and glass ball ornaments.

  6. Put a new twist on framed wall art. Rather than hanging your wall art, lean your framed art atop a wall shelf that has a lip. Arrange shelves at varying levels or hang a multi-level decorative wall shelf unit. For more visual interest, stagger your artwork so that one or two smaller prints sit in front of a larger piece. Be sure to install the shelf in wall studs, and reinforce large or heavy artwork by attaching it to the wall.

  7. Personalize a child's space. Hang a long display ledge with a plate groove above a crib or child's bed, but out of reach of the child. Place over-sized alphabet cards in the plate groove; spell out your child's name or a clever saying.

  8. Show off your prized possessions in a unique way. Install several corner ledges in the corner of your dining room or living room to display small, special items.

  9. Make reading more accessible to your children. Place display ledges that have a lip low to the ground in a child's room. Stack books on the shelf, so that the front covers face outward.

  10. Frame your entire room with shelves. Hang wall shelves near the ceiling around the entire perimeter of a game room or child's room. Place toy trains, doll collection, baseball collection or other memorabilia on the shelves for an instant "theme" room.

  11. Add a little sparkle to your decor. Place a deep wall shelf above your bar or high up in your kitchen to display your beautiful wine glasses or rarely used glassware. Reinforce your wall shelves into wall studs for extra sturdiness.

  12. Decorate in unexpected places. Hang a wall shelf above your doors or windows to display holiday decor, such as your collection of snowmen, ceramic jack o' lanterns or Americana.