12 Shelving Ideas to Display Your Stuff in Unique Ways

12 Shelving Ideas to Display Your Stuff in Unique Ways
Photo: Mariia Boiko, Shutterstock

If every surface in your home is perpetually covered in books, knick-knacks, and other junk, you probably need more shelves. Filling your home with practical shelving can offer the perfect solution to your clutter problems and give you a creative way to display your books, plants, photos, and everything else.

But putting up shelves can be a complicated process, especially if you don’t the the tools to hang them securely or can’t drill into your walls. Well, there is still hope, in the form of creative alternative ways to hang shelves that will add a unique style to your home. Here are 13 DIY shelving ideas to decorate your home — and help you keep it organised.

Rope hanging shelves

Rope hanging shelves give you the functionality of wall shelving without the hassle of levelling and extensive drilling. The shelf hangs from a rope pulled through two holes in either side of the wood plank, hung from the wall or ceiling by one or two hooks. This method can support a single shelf or multiple shelves, depending on how much space you need to create.

Wine box shelves

If you’re a big wine drinker (or don’t mind hitting up your local liquor store for some castoffs), you can put the crates the bottles come in to good use in your home. The cases can act as a bookshelf, display case for antiques, or collectibles. You can use the boxes as they come or saw them down to size as needed. Either place them on the floor and stack them, or screw anchor them into the wall to create a rustic floating shelf.

Leather strap and wood shelves

Sometimes all you need to make a shelf is a plank of wood, leather straps, and some screws. Small strips of leather (about 1-1/4 inch wide) are wrapped around each end of the wood plank. The leather makes two triangles on either side, secures into the wall with a screw, and supports the wood plank (similar to the way rope hanging shelves function). The thickness of the leather makes the plank a bit more secure than the ropes and gives a leatherman feel.

DIY Pegboard shelf

A pegboard provides a flexible storage solution in a small space. A board with several holes is installed in the wall, and peg can be popped in and out interchangeably to create different shelving configurations, supporting larger and smaller shelves — and any spare pegs can be used to hang things like plants.

Plywood floating shelves

By attaching small horizontal planks to a vertical three quarter inch plywood you can create easy floating shelves without having to sweat making them level on the wall. You can get wood precut at your hardware store to fit the shelf sizes you desire and arrange them on the larger piece of plywood however you like. Then secure that piece directly to the wall. You can paint it to match your decor, or leave the wood as-is for a cosy cabin feel.

Picture box frame shelves

Picture boxes are a unique decorative feature with functional use. You can make your own four-by-six or five-by-seven boxes with wood planks and hang pictures inside to create a cool 3D frame that can also function as storage space for decorative items like small plants and candles. Or, attach old picture frames over the front to make an antique shadowbox.

Crate shelves

Like wine boxes, shipping crates are perfect storage option if you can’t hang anything from the wall, and can be stacked from the floor to the ceiling if you like. Wooden crates made from long, thin slats are ideal, as you’ll be able to remove some of the slats to customise the shelving as you like, without a lot of sawing or shaping. Add your own style with a nice coat of paint.

Recycled tire shelf

Tires can be upcycled in a variety of ways, from serving as garden planters to, yes, shelves in your home. The full tire can be outfitted with shelves that fit securely inside the inner ring. There are a lot of options here — the video above, by Pin That Craft, uses plexiglass shelves secured with a hot glue gun. This is an admittedly bold decorative choice, but can work great in a kid’s room or a garage.

Basket shelves

Basket shelves might be the most useful and creative organising solution. All you need is a couple of wicker or wire baskets, a hammer, and some nails. Find a spot where you’d like hanging storage, hammer nails into the wall, and hang your basket with the bottom side flush to the wall. This is a clean, easy option for open shelving where you can store lighter like linens, towels, and other household items. (Anything heavier and you’ll want to make sure sub in anchor screws for the nails).

Hanging bins

Another easy storage solution is hanging bins. Affix some screws or industrial hooks to the wall, and find a few bins with a small lip that can hang from those supports. If you want something a little more secure, you can drill holes in the bins to secure them to the wall directly. The bins can be stylish and colourful but, more importantly, they can hold a bunch of stuff.

Skateboard wall shelf

If skateboarding is a big part of your life, this shelving solution may seen totally rad. Attach brackets to the wall and place a skateboard plank (with the wheels removed) across them. This method makes a great shoe rack or bookshelf, and the curve of the board (and perhaps the designs printed on it) will make it stand out amid your decor.

Cinder Blocks and wood stacked shelves

Cinder blocks and wood planks make a sturdy, stackable shelf for your home. With four-foot-long two-by-fours and around ten cinder blocks, you can assemble a shelf without a hammer or nails. With cinder blocks on either side facing in, the wood planks are laid in between them and secured in the block openings making a horizontal shelf. Stack the cinderblocks for more shelving, but make sure you are on level ground and the cinder blocks are not stacked too high they topple. The cinder blocks will provide a sturdy shelf for heavy plants, maybe even a wrack for your at-home weights.

Log in to comment on this story!