industrial farmhouse shelving
DIY Projects

DIY Industrial Farmhouse Shelving

It’s funny how industrial style and farmhouse style could even possibly go together. Farmhouse decor is so rustic and weathered and aged. And Industrial decor is streamlined, plain, and a little unfinished. Definitely an unlikely combo, but somehow opposites attract and it really works. I’ve seen a lot of Industrial Farmhouse design used lately and I’ve fallen in love with it. After a Fixer Upper marathon on Sunday, I was convinced that I could build my own shelves and save myself the hundreds of dollars it costs to buy them pre-made.

Industrial Farmhouse Bathroom Shelving

These handsome open storage shelves are perfect in my newly remodeled bathroom and I couldn’t be happier with how they turned out. But behind all this gorgeousness, there was quite a struggle to get to the finished product. The project itself was really easy, I just didn’t have any instructions on how to build this idea I had in my head and made a few mistakes along the way. But mistakes are what you learn from and now that I know exactly how to flawlessly install these shelves, I can save you the trouble of patching {giant} holes in your walls. Yeah…it was bad. But that’s not important. Let’s talk about the right way to do it.

Hardware for Shelving

I bought all the hardware at Lowes in the plumbing department. You need two of each for one shelf. I used 12″ x 1″ metal pipes, 1″ caps, and those round metal thingies (I’m sure they have a special name but I don’t know it) to fit a 1″ pipe. You can go wider than an inch, but I wouldn’t go any thinner.

Now, see those thick grip anchors that say they will hold up 75 pounds? That is exactly what you should NOT get. Don’t get me wrong, they are great anchors, just not for this job. Get the anchors with wings. If you can’t find any in the screw and anchor department, you can find them in the custom wire closet area. The Rubbermaid brand anchors are fantastic and if they can hold up a whole wall of clothes, they can take care of a couple of shelves without breaking a sweat.

Thick Wood Slabs

While you’re at Lowes, head back to the lumber department and find some really nice thick wood planks. If you’re sweet to the guy (or lady) in the red vest near the saw, they will cut it to whatever length you need. I guess they would probably cut it for you anyway, but it always helps to be sweet. When you get the wood slabs home, give them a good sanding until perfectly smooth, then coat with a wood stain following the directions on the can.

Attach caps to pipes

Now, pay close attention and follow these steps in this exact order. Trust me, a two-day detour to patch, sand, repaint, and reposition made me an expert on these things.

First, clean the pipes. They are super dirty. I used Goo Gone wipes because the stickers left a lot of residue.

Next, attach the caps. They won’t go all the way over the threads. Just tighten until you can’t move it anymore.

Then screw the other end of the pipe onto the round metal thingy.

When it’s all attached, hold one assembly up to the wall on one side of where you want the shelf to be. Mark the holes, then using a level, mark the holes for the other side. Repeat for any additional shelves. Check three times to make sure it’s going to be level. You can’t undo the anchors in the next step.

Drill pilot holes, attach wing anchors, pop them into place with the tool that comes with them, and repeat for all other holes. Then screw the metal round thingies onto the wall. DO NOT UNASSEMBLE THEM! 

This is what messed me up. I tried to screw on just the thingy, then attach the pipe. This drove the anchor right out of the wall and made a child’s fist-size hole. Just don’t unassemble. Please.

Industrial Farmhouse Shelving Hardware

After your pipe brackets are all attached, just plop your perfectly stained beauties on top. No need to do anything else with them. They are pretty heavy so they shouldn’t slip. Just don’t fill the shelves with bowling balls or baby elephants or anything crazy like that.

Industrial Farmhouse Shelving

Industrial Farmhouse Wall Shelving

That’s it! Super easy! Quick reminder: always check walls for wires and pipes before drilling. You can buy a tool for this that’s kind of like a stud finder. And speaking of studs, these anchors are pretty strong but if at all possible, screw the shelving into studs. It’s so much safer.

Love that Industrial Towel Bar with the valve on top? You can find it in the In The New House Market!

Don’t be scared, you can absolutely do this. I promise. It doesn’t get much easier than this.

Where would you put these awesome rustic shelves in your house? I’d love to hear your ideas!


  1. These look great what a fantastic idea. I love the industrial look.

  2. Looks amazing! Great idea.

  3. Sandra gandy

    the shelves are beautiful. good job.

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