Creating a Happy, Colorful, Handmade Home & life on the shores of lake superior

January 10, 2014

Modern Brackets for Open Shelving

When the lakehouse kitchen facelift was temporarily and indefinitely abandoned, I lost steam finalizing some plans.  Now that we have a moving date and can resume kitchen work soon, I'm hurrying to make some decisions.  I originally planned to pick up some inexpensive Ikea Ekby Bjarnum brackets that we'd pair with custom-fit, handmade shelves for a sleek floating look.  I then changed my mind, worried that it would be too difficult to neatly fit handmade shelves into these brackets.  They're meant to pair with Ikea melamine shelves, which are manufactured to be identical.

Floating shelves
via Ikea Spotting
 When I spotted this photo, I fell in love with the Ekby Lerberg bracket, also from Ikea:

Gold brackets and rustic shelves
via Houzz
The brackets are powder coated steel, sold in white, which would look great against white walls with white shelves.  Or I could paint them a bright colour!  Or silver!  Or copper!  Unfortunately, before I could scoop up an armload, Hubby took one look at them and shook his head no.  Because I want to display my hefty Pyrex collection on the open shelves, these brackets are too flimsy.  Better safe than sorry, I suppose.  But I'm running out of time to find some super sturdy, modern brackets.  Hubby has approved these Richelieu brackets from Home Depot:

Sturdy white shelving brackets

I don't know that I love them, but then, I don't know that I don't.  With white shelves and white walls I think they will disappear and if they guarantee my vintage casseroles won't perish in a spectacular fall, then I'm game.  Unless someone knows of a more attractive bracket of Herculean strength?
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14 comments

  1. I think those brackets could be lovely with a nice bit of gold spray paint!

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  2. I agree you could paint them or even give them a shabby look by sanding them

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  3. I don't hate those brackets at all. In fact, in white they have the minimalist, fade-into-the-background look that I think you're going for, since you probably want your turquoise cabinets and the chunky shelves themselves (not to mention your Pyrex) to get the attention. In my opinion, when you're doing open shelving, there's so much to see that you only need the most utilitarian brackets.

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    1. I always value your stamp of approval, not just because I love your aesthetic, but because if you like something I know it's keeping with the modern (sometimes mid-century) look I'm going for. I'm hoping these brackets will disappear, esp. against very thick shelves. Hubby loves them because they each hold a crazy amount of weight. And he wants a million. In studs. So safety conscious, that Hubby.

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  4. I used very simple heavy duty white brackets for my clothes rod/shelf in my closet and put all of them in studs. I have eight large plastic containers on the shelf, holding out-of-season clothes and miscellaneous junk, some of it pretty heavy. Because the brackets are in studs, they're not going anywhere....ever. Handy Hubby is right, as usual. :)

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    1. Handy Hubby is very safety-minded. I should be happy. If it were up to me, I'd let my aesthetic choices rule all. You should see the crazy job he does taping up moving boxes. Each boxes gets about 20 pieces of tape in an intricate system, which is all taped down by one piece running along the perimeter. It's a good thing I bought packing tape in bulk, lol.

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  5. sorry if this posts twice (when I have to sign-in to google sometimes I lose my comment)
    You could fashion completely floating custom shelves where the bracket is invisible. Like those you buy pre-built, hubby could weld brackets (because he can) with rods that fit into holes drilled into the shelf. A long steel bar, that could be screwed into every stud if you wanted, with round stock welded to the bar at reasonable intervals along the shelf. I know this description is lame but here's an example.
    http://www.shelvingshop.com.au/shopexd.asp?id=884
    Making custom brackets allows you to make it as robust as you need and invisible brackets makes the shelves the focus.
    But no matter how you hang the floating shelves, I can't wait to see. I love some open shelving in the kitchen.

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    1. I actually really want floating shelves, but I'm worried it will take too much time. We have so much other work to do around the house and I want the kitchen spruce done asap. I'm trying to keep my plans simple. But you make it sound so easy . . . I'm going to check out that link right now.

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  6. I have used these (they come in large and small) several times: http://www.ikea.com/us/en/catalog/products/10143211/. You can stain or paint them any color and they have be supporting my bookshelves (filled with gigantic nutrition textbooks for 4+ years).

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    1. Hey, those are nice!! Thanks for the link. It's helpful to hear they can hold their own against huge textbooks. That has to be the ultimate challenge :)

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  7. When I saw the pic of these brackets, the idea that immediately popped into my mind was some kind of treatment to make them look like galvanized steel. A slightly marbled, matte dark grey? Or am I crazy...

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    1. It would be so cool if they came in unpainted steel . . . maybe I should check the isle at Home Depot again . . .

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