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Some facts about us: Together since May 2004, Matt & Kristin Married in May 2009. Between the two of us, we've lived in California, Hawaii, Guam, Japan and met here, in good ol' Virginia. We adopted two mini schnauzers, Hemingway & Mya aka The Pups. We bought our first home in May of 2011 and are ridiculously excited for all the DIY projects ahead of us.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

How to Hang Shelves Without Studs

Waiting for your husband, brother, father, etc. to come over and hang a shelf or picture is silly when any girl can do it.  Any girl with the right tools that is.  Even if you have to hold your shelf up with one hand, hold your drill with the other and use your teeth to put the screw on your drill.

Who's taking the picture then?  Oh, that would be friend, Kristen (Friend: another person you shouldn't wait on to hang things) who was a little too occupied to help...

Maybe it's because Troy was on TV and who can resist staring into Brad Pitt's eyes for a couple of hours?  "Immortality! Take it! It's yours!"

Admittedly, I used to be drill-iterate.  (ha.  yes.)  But now, I give myself an A for effort on yielding a drill and attacking my own mini projects all over the place.  Do they always turn out right?  Nope.  But I'm learning.

Here's a quick 'how-to' to hang shelves without studs.  The days of "You have to find the stud in the wall to hang anything heavy" are over.  You can basically hang them where ever you want if you have the right equipment going into the job.  And you probably already have most everything.

You'll need:
  • Shelf or Shelves
  • Brackets
  • Screws
  • Drywall Anchors (about same size as screws)
  • Drill
  • Hammer
  • Leveler
  • Measuring Tape

Make sure you get the right type of drywall anchors.  Ask a specialist at your local store what you will need for the size shelf you're using and also what is going on it.

  1. Find the perfect spot.
  2. Use your measuring tape and measure how wide your shelf is.  Using a pencil, take the measurement and the leveler to mark your wall where the shelf will go.   Measure the brackets accordingly and mark the walls where your screws will be going.
  3. Take your drill, using a bit that's about the size of the tip of your drywall anchor and drill a hole in each marked area for your screws.  You don't want this hole too big (that's what she said) because the anchor needs to be snug. 
  4. Once all the holes are drilled, take your wall anchor and gently tap it into each hole using your hammer.  The anchors should be flush with the wall.  Now you can place the bracket(s) on the wall and screw your screws into the wall anchor. 

Also, make sure you put your brackets on the right side up.  Don't be like me, and hang it upside down before realizing what you've done.  And then realizing when you turn it right side up, that the holes don't match up.  And then possibly falling to the ground in a temper tantrum.  That may or may not have happened. 
Don't mind the crazy hair flip, I was in work mode that day

 After that debacle, I pulled it together (with a little pep talk from my friend Kristen who ended up being a lifesaver even if she didn't lift a finger) and finished the job up nicely.  Sometimes you gotta give yourself a pat on the back even if things go wrong.


  1. Great work again! haha love it. Did B help you at all?? :)


  2. Hey i documented this job lol, with both hands tied up there is no way kris could have done this alone...i mean THANK GOD i was there!!! and seriously, who can resist Brad Pitt lol

    Great Job Tin =)

  3. We had to anchor a bookshelf to the wall where studs did not exist. We made at least three trips to Lowes before the job was finished. That bookshelf will probably spend the rest of it's life here because it is all but cemented to the wall.

  4. Hahahaha! Love this one! The shelves are beautiful! Kristen B, come over and help me do mine too. =)

  5. @ Jackie - She did help peel me off the ground when I was throwing my fit... and took pictures. haha
    @ Kristin B - thank you for your help!
    @ Renee - LOL at least you know it's not going anywhere! :)
    @ Marissa - Thanks for reading!


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