How to Hang Shelves From the Ceiling


Hanging shelves from the ceiling is a viable way to set up a shelving system in rooms such as your garage or basement that have unfinished ceilings. The exposed ceiling joists offer an excellent point to attach the shelves to, making construction relatively simple. A shelving system hung from the ceiling offers the advantage of having clear space below the shelves to the floor, making cleaning underneath the shelves easier and allowing the floor to be used for storage of larger items.

Things You'll Need

  • 4-foot 2-by-4-inch boards, 6
  • An assistant
  • Hammer
  • 10d nails
  • Circular saw
  • Measuring tape
  • 4-foot 1-by-10-inch boards, 2
  • Hold a 2-by-4-inch board vertically against a ceiling joist at the edge of the ceiling so that the top 2 inches of the board overlap the wood of the joist. Use an assistant to hold the board in place and nail the board to the joist with a hammer and two or three 10d nails.

  • Nail a second board to the joist, same as the first, but positioned 10 inches away from the wall.

  • Nail a third 2-by-4 board to a joist 4 feet further down the wall from the first board you installed, positioned at the edge of the ceiling.

  • Nail a fourth board positioned 10 inches out from the wall on the same joist as the previous board.

  • Cut four pieces of 2-by-4 board with a circular saw, each piece 14 inches long.

  • Nail the 14-inch-long pieces of 2-by-4 board between the vertical 2-by-4, on the inside facing edges of the boards (so that they face each other). Place two of the boards so they're even with the bottom edges of the vertical boards. Place two of the boards 2 feet up from the bottom edges of the vertical boards.

  • Place the 1-by-10-inch boards between the vertical boards, with the ends resting upon the horizontally place boards. Nail the 1-by-10-inch boards onto the 2-by-4 with 10d nails.

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  • "How to Plan & Build Bookcases, Cabinets & Shelves"; Craig Bergquist; 1987
  • Photo Credit Images
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