Shelves in the Study

Last March, I found several great inexpensive shelving options from Target. I really liked the cool-factor and storage several of these provided. However, I found the footprint made our study feel cramped. I went back to the drawing board and decided floating or hanging shelves would do the trick. I came across the Ekby Gällö shelving unit when Carol and Ellie posted a great Ikea hack on painting the metal supports copper. shelvesinthestudy1

The metal braces have a rope-like look and originally come in white. I purchased one can of Rust-Oleum Aged Copper spray paint to add contrast and a glam vibe. I tried painting them laying down, but found the overspray paint on the box would stick on the not-yet-cured paint when I went to flip it over. I resorted to using dry cleaning hangers and bending them to hold. I hung them in the garage. It was a lot easier! In addition, I painted the tops of the screws I would be using so they disappeared once installed. Since it is so darn hot these days, I let them cure in the garage for a week and then brought them inside to cure for another week. The last week was unintentional, as I got distracted and delayed the install.

I decided to use the Ekby Östen shelves to compliment our white desk. There were 2 thicknesses of white shelves that fit, but I thought the thinner ones looked better with the thin metal. The only real limitation is the load capabilities. I knew we would use this as a mostly decorative piece, barring any hanging monkeys, and we would not exceed the 45 pound limit.

The shelving unit materials and paint totaled $50. I already had molly bolts and the drill bit on hand, so those could be additional expenses if you were just getting started.

Initially, I just filled these shelves with some random decor that was already hanging out in our study. Slowly, I have been a little more intentional about what is on there. A few of my favorites are: a garden watercolor my late Great Aunt painted that my Grandmother gifted me back in April, a pair of peacocks I picked out at the Shilparamam bazaar while traveling in India, and a couple of pineapple and Hawaiian nods. The “aloha” sign was at our welcome table at our wedding, the picture of Chris and I was taken in Oahu in 2012 and is in a frame we used at our reception, the “just maui’d” pineapple was a gift from our dear friends Ashton and Mark, and the glass pineapple was a gift from a dear family friend. To add some function I added magazine organizers, some of our books (organized by colors), and a nice big box for receipts (yes, I am an accountant!).

I love the mix of copper, gold, and silver. My most recent addition is the Greek key bookends I found at an estate sale. Currently, I love the vintage, worn look of the brass.


Shelves are always evolving as decor moves around the house. Who knows what these will look like in three months! Special thanks to hosts Beth at designPOST interiors, Summer at Simple Stylings, Becky at this is happiness, Sarah at Life on Virginia Street, and Claire at Claire Brody Designs for the #yourhomestyle and #showusyourshelfie series!




Post Navigation