Hi Friends! If you’ve spent time at handmadeweekly.com before you’ve probably seen numerous pictures of the IKEA GRANHULT shelves. I seriously love them! I’ve used them in my bathroom, dining room and laundry room. The one thing that I don’t love though is that IKEA doesn’t sell a solid wood shelf to go with the brackets. So I make my own! Today I’m sharing my process for this IKEA GRANHULT wood shelf hack.
Before I get started, I want to point out that IKEA seems to have changed the name of the shelf brackets from EKBY to GRANHULT. They used to only have one size, the 7-3/4″ deep but earlier this year they came out with a larger one that is 11-3/4″ deep. These shelves come in one finish which is nickel plated.
Now on to what you’ll need to make your own wood shelves for the IKEA GRANHULT brackets.
Spray paint (if you want to change the color of the brackets)
Planer *special instructions included if you don’t have a planer
Directions IKEA GRANHULT Wood Shelf Hack (for 7-3/4″ deep brackets)
Step 1 – Cut the 2×10 to width
Use a table saw to trim the sides off of the 2×10 board to match the 7-3/4″ depth of the brackets. Be sure to take a bit off of each side rather than just one side. 2x pine boards have rounded edges so in order to get a square edges you’ll need to cut on both sides.
Step 2 – Plane the 2×10
Use a planer to take material off of the thickness of the 2×10 board until it perfectly matches the height of the bracket opening. It’ll be just about 1″ thick when you’re finished.
But Hannah, I don’t have a planer and I don’t want to spend $400+ to make a single shelf!
Ok, I hear you. There are a few options to make the wood shelves if you don’t have a planer.
- Use a 1×10 board instead of a 2×10. This is an easy solution but a 1×10 is actually 3/4″ x 9.5″ so it won’t quite be thick enough to fill the entire height of the bracket. You’ll end up having a gap and in my opinion it looks terrible.
- Use a stair tread. You can purchase stair treads from most home improvement stores and they are 1″ thick so pretty much the perfect thickness for these shelves. The only downside to using stair treads is that the pine ones are a laminated pine and might not be look that you’re going for. They also limit the length that you can use for the shelf. Most come in 48″ lengths so unless you’re making a super long shelf (in which case I would recommend a center support bracket anyways) you’ll be fine.
But if you do already have a planer, it will by far be the most inexpensive option.
Step 3 – Cut the board to length
Cut the board to the length that you want your shelf to be. Be sure to account for the thickness of the brackets.
Step 4 (Optional) – Apply stain and polyurethane
For my bathroom shelves I used early american stain by minwax.
For the final finish I used clear semi gloss polyurethane.
Step 5 – Hang the shelves
I’ll use this step as an opportunity to share my absolute favorite wall anchors. I’ve used a ton of different drywall anchors in the past and the Toggler brand Drywall Anchors work the best for me. I’ve used them on all of my IKEA GRANHULT shelves (even the 11-3/4″ deep ones) and they hold a crap ton of weight with no issues.
The first step in hanging the shelf is to use slide the brackets onto each end of the wood shelf. You’ll probably need a rubber mallet to get them all the way on. After the brackets are attached, use a level and tape measure to align the shelf where you want it and mark a spot in the bracket holes so that you know where to drill.
Reference the drywall anchor packaging to determine what size drill bit is recommended for the anchors that you are using. Then drill holes where you have marked.
If you go with the Toggler brand drywall anchors you’ll pinch the wings down and then shove the anchor into the hole. Use a hammer to drive the anchor in until it is flush with the wall.
Then, use the red pin to knock the wings back out behind the drywall. Push it in as far as you can with your finger and then use a hammer to gently tap it the rest of the way until you hear the “pop”.
Once all anchors are set you can hang your shelves using the screws that came with the anchors. I used slightly different screws on mine to match the shelf above.
Did I mention that I love the IKEA GRANHULT brackets? 😉 Below are some pictures of the 7-3/4″ brackets in my dining room. I used rustoleum soft iron spray paint to change the color of the brackets. They have held up perfectly over time. If you want a different metal finish check out the spray paint options at your local hardware store. You’ll probably find a huge variety including copper and rose gold!
In my laundry room I used the deeper 11-3/4″ GRANHULT brackets. At first I had hoped to use a single 2×12 board to make these but it wasn’t wide enough so I had to use two 2×8 boards that I biscuit joined together to meet the 11-3/4″ depth.
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What do you think of this IKEA GRANHULT wood shelf hack?