How High To Hang Floating Shelves

Stacy Randall
by Stacy Randall

You will find many projects that you want to tackle in your home, and a common one is hanging shelves. Hanging floating shelves can be a challenge and isn’t always as simple as you think. However, there are simple tactics you can use to determine how high to hang floating shelves.

Deciding how high to hang your floating shelves varies from room to room and what is underneath them. From beds, sinks, and counters, knowing the perfect height for hanging shelves is important. If you have more than one shelf, knowing how far apart to place them helps achieve a cohesive look.

If all your walls in your home are plain or have simple pictures, hanging shelves will help with the design. Giving your walls dimension and color will help your home look chic, and shelves add function. Different floating shelves display artifacts and other heirlooms, giving you the space to be creative.

Deciding How High to Hang Floating Shelves

You should hang shelves at roughly eye level and within arm’s reach. This is about 5 feet from the floor, but if hanging above certain furniture pieces, measuring is vital. Of course, there are no rules set in stone, and you might factor other things into your height decision.

Floating shelves have a sleek, clean look and offer a variety of styles and colors to match your decor. Knowing the right measurements is key to ensuring children cannot reach any valuables and your shelves are safe.

How High Should I Hang Floating Shelves Above a Bed?

When it comes to putting shelves above your bed, you will want to make sure it is out of head range. Measure at least 10 inches from the bed frame up the wall. This distance will give you the headspace you need and allow you to store books and valuables.

If you have more than one shelf, placing them 12 inches apart in either direction will give you an even look. The shelves will give your room a balanced look and be high enough to keep little hands away from valuables.

How High Should I Hang Floating Shelves Above a Kitchen Sink?

If you wish to have a shelf over your kitchen sink, the customary height range is between 24 to 36 inches. This space frees up the overhead area for other things while protecting your shelves from water.

The stove range and even cabinets are typically this high, so your kitchen will look cohesive. If you have more than one shelf to hang above the sink, you should space them approximately 15 inches apart.

What’s the Best Height for Floating Shelves in a Living Room?

When you walk into your living room, you will likely see your couch, lamps, and various furniture items. If you wish to hang floating shelves, you will want to mount them 4 to 5 feet from the ground. This measurement keeps the shelves at an eye-catching level yet high enough to avoid tiny hands.

You want to have all your pictures and valuables within eye level, so your display is easy to see. If you hang a floating shelf in the living room above furniture, 10 inches above is preferred.

What Is the Best Floating Shelf Height Above a Counter?

Much like your kitchen sink, you will want your shelves to be approximately 24 to 36 inches above the counter. This distance gives you plenty of clearance and headspace.

This is also the usual height from the counter to your cabinets, so it will all look meant to be. Plus, it still keeps much of your backsplash visible, so it doesn’t interfere with your design.

You can have your shelves float above a bathroom counter; a bit higher above the sink is essential. Usually, leaning towards 36 inches prevents splashing and residue from reaching your shelves.

How High Should You Hang a Floating Shelf Above a Toilet?

With a toilet, make sure to mount the floating shelf in a comfortable space for everyone and anyone who uses the bathroom. You will need to measure 24 inches from the back of the toilet to ensure no one hits their head.

A shelf 24 inches above the toilet gives plenty of headspace. It is also an excellent place to have decorations like potpourri and towels.

How Far Apart Should Floating Shelves Be?

Maintaining the same distance is essential if you have numerous shelves in the same room and on the same wall. This space can be different for each room and in various situations to make a room look good. Balance and distance are what make your shelves look cohesive and work for any design.

What’s the Best Distance Between Floating Shelves in a Living Room?

The distance between and staggered between shelves should be anywhere between 8 to 12 inches. Varying on what you want to put on the shelves, you can gauge the distance. Placing shelves about 8 to 12 inches apart is good and gives the room a classy vibe.

What’s the Best Distance Between Floating Shelves in a Kitchen?

In your kitchen, with numerous floating shelves and cabinets, they will need to be at least 12 inches. The most common distance between shelves is typically 15 to 18 inches apart. Having the shelves 15 to 18 inches opens up your space and gives an airy look to your kitchen.

How Far Apart Should Staggered Floating Shelves Be?

Having staggered floating shelves is a modern trend that gives a room a sense of space and accessibility. When hanging staggered shelves, you should have a distance of at least 12 inches between each shelf. But following the rule that you should put shelves about 15 to 18 inches apart is best.

However, if you put too much space between your staggered shelves, it may represent an incohesive look. Too much space can make the room look random and messy, so the distance does matter.

Final Look at How High to Hang Floating Shelves

If you hang floating shelves in your home, depending on the room, you may wish to hang them differently. Varying from the kitchen to the bathroom and the living room, height and distance can vary. By understanding that your floating shelves should not be too close to furniture, it can save you a headache.

Measuring 12 to 24 inches above your bed frame gives you plenty of headspace. From sinks to toilets, measuring 24 to 36 inches is key to avoiding head hitting and splashing. Your shelves in the kitchen should be level or the same height as your cabinets to give a smooth look.

If you have multiple shelves to hang or float, you should be sure to measure no less than 12 inches between them. The distance can mean the difference between a cohesive transition or a broken, staggered look. To have your eye drawn to specific items or details, make sure your shelves are measured, leveled, and secure.

Stacy Randall
Stacy Randall

Stacy Randall is a wife, mother, and freelance writer from NOLA that has always had a love for DIY projects, home organization, and making spaces beautiful. Together with her husband, she has been spending the last several years lovingly renovating her grandparent's former home, making it their own and learning a lot about life along the way.

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