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How To Build Easy DIY laundry Room Shelves (Makeover)

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Today I’m sharing how to make DIY laundry room shelves! Our budget-friendly laundry room makeover featuring handmade shelves is was a simple project that we completed in a couple hours for under $100.

When our stackable washer and dryer stopped working within a week of each other, we decided it was the perfect time to remodel our small laundry room closet and create an organized and functional space with diy wood shelves.

Easy DIY Laundry Room Shelves

Our small laundry room was a closet inside our first floor bathroom.

It originally was behind 2 bifold doors and had a stackable unit to the right side.

Below is the laundry room before we made floating laundry room shelves.

DIY floating shelves
DIY laundry room shelves totally transformed our small space

As you can see below, the wood diy laundry shelves were a game changer!

small laundry room remodel in a closet with floating shelving
Love these wood diy laundry room shelves

To give the illusion that the small space was larger, we decided to create DIY floating shelves out of plywood and pine. A floating shelf or two can make all the difference in a laundry room when it comes to storage and organization.

If you do not want to learn how to make a wood diy shelves, this laundry shelving unit is great that you can buy cheaply and get this laundry room look for yourself.

DIY Laundry Room Floating Shelves

Before we get started, I need to address the size of our wood shelves.

What is the depth of a laundry room shelf?

Our laundry room shelves are approximately 4 feet long and 20 inches deep, perfect for holding plenty of baskets or large tubs of laundry detergent.

Shelf depth depends on the size of your space and how big or small you want the shelves.

The first thing you want to do is make sure the bottom shelf has enough height space to accommodate laundry supplies.

Plan accordingly!

Due to the length of these laundry room shelves, you need to pay close attention to the instructions on how they are supported along the back wall as this step is crucial to the stability of the shelves.

Making a long wood floating shelf will require proper support, so be sure to plan accordingly based on how much weight will be on the shelf.

What wood to use for laundry room shelves?

We used AC plywood to make our laundry room shelves.

AC plywood is a type of plywood characterized by its smooth, sanded A-grade surface on one side (the pretty side!) and a rough C-grade surface on the other.

It is often used for making shelves because the smooth side provides an attractive finish, while the rough side can be concealed, making it suitable for shelving projects that require affordability, aesthetics and strength.

Supplies Needed:

  • To make our shelves, we cut 2 inch wide stripes of pine for our cleats.
  • 3/4 inch AC plywood for the diy laundry room table
  • 2 pieces of 1″ x 20″ of pine for the diy floating laundry shelves.
  • filler (to fill nail holes
  • white paint
  • sandpaper for rough edges
  • drill bit to drill pilot holes if necessary
  • 3 inch wood screws (or drywall screws)
  • brad nailer and finish nails
  • stud finder
  • measuring tape
  • pencil for marking measurements
  • paint roller & tray

We now have an Amazon Storefront so if you would like any of these items or want to get this look, be sure to click here.

AC plywood is basically plywood that is plugged and sanded. It’s “pretty” plywood. Be careful which plywood you buy as many are weaker and have knots.

Wood DIY Shelves

Step 1: Install Cleats On Wall

When you are making long floating shelves (like we did), you will need to make sure you run a long cleat along the back wall to keep the shelf from sagging.

A large floating shelf needs the proper support!

Use 1×2 pine for your cleats and nail to the wall

wood cleats for shelves and DIY laundry folding table
diy laundry room shelves

I wish I had a picture of me standing on top of the washer and dryer nailing and screwing the cleats to the wall.

Unfortunately, we had to do the shelves once the washer and dryer were in the closet. It would have been much easier with the closet empty.

The floating laundry room shelves above the washer and dryer created so much extra storage space.

DIY floating shelves laundry room closet + wood laundry folding table

I measured the distance of how high I wanted the floating laundry shelves to be and tacked my cleats ( I used a small level on each cleat to make sure they were level) to the wall stud with finish nails using the nail gun.

Once the cleats were tacked in place, I used 3-inch drywall screws to screw the cleats to the wall studs to secure them properly.

Step 2: Cut AC plywood to size for shelving and folding table

To make the diy wood folding table shelf, we purchased a 4′ x 8′ sheet of plywood for around $45.

This is an inexpensive way to make a wide laundry room shelf and create a folding table.

Quick Tips On How To Build Wall Shelves

Keep in mind you can use this tutorial when building any wall shelves that have 3 sides. Placing cleats on the 3 walls will allow you to make floating shelves very easily. If you are building wall shelves on a “single” wall, be sure to check out how we added wall shelves in our bathroom using bingo brackets.

  1. Make sure your floating shelves are the correct height.
  2. Use your tallest object (like a detergent bottle) that you want on the shelf as a guide to make sure you have the right height for your floating shelves.

I used the height of the storage baskets that I knew would hold my cleaning supplies and the tallest detergent bottle.

Step 3: Make sure wood shelves are level

Use a level to make sure your wood shelves are straight and not crooked!

Don’t skip this step.

DIY floating shelves laundry room closet + wood laundry folding table

Step 4: Install a wood backsplash

Next step, I wanted a backsplash at the back of the folding table.

Losing objects behind the washer and dryer would be painful to retrieve so a backsplash was necessary.

We simply tacked a piece of 4″ wide plywood (trim piece) to the top of the AC plywood and added a 2″ inch strip to the back to create a lip.

There are many more ways to add a backsplash, but this was the quickest and easiest.

Step 5: Trim piece on floating shelves

I also decided that I wanted the DIY floating laundry shelves to appear to be thick and wide, more of a chunky look so we used finish nails to tack a piece of pine to the edge of the shelf. I

used my Ryobi brad nailer which you can find here.

For this laundry space, I thought a 2 3/4″ inch depth looked good.

DIY floating shelves laundry room closet + wood laundry folding table
diy laundry room shelves

Isn’t it amazing what under $100 worth of wood can do for a space?

The DIY floating shelves were so easy to make, and after they were painted white, they looked like custom built floating shelves.

DIY floating shelves laundry room closet + wood laundry folding table
our homemade wood shelves came out perfect!

Laundry Room Shelving Ideas

I searched google and pinterest for updated laundry room shelves for days before I finally settled on making our own.

They do make floating shelf brackets but to save money, we made our own out of wood.

Honestly, if you have a little DIY skills, you can make your own shelves.

Top 5 shelving ideas in a laundry room to get your creative juices flowing!

  1. Open Shelving Units: Install sturdy open shelves above your washer and dryer like we did. They provide easy access to laundry essentials like detergent, dryer sheets, fabric softener, and baskets for small items. Plus, they hold cute wire baskets and containers to elevate your space.
  2. Cabinet Shelves: If you have existing laundry room cabinets, consider adding shelves inside them that are adjustable. This can help you organize cleaning supplies, ironing accessories, and more.
  3. Pegboard Wall: If you have extra wall space in your laundry room, install a pegboard like we did in our basement laundry room (yes we have two laundry rooms!) on one wall and use hooks and pegs to hang laundry-related items such as brooms, mops, ironing boards, and even small baskets for odds and ends.
  4. Floating Shelves: Opt for floating shelves on multiple walls. They offer a minimalist look and can hold baskets, folded laundry, or decorative wicker baskets.
  5. Rolling Laundry Carts: Place rolling laundry carts or utility carts with shelves next to your appliances. They are mobile and can hold dirty laundry, sorted loads, or clean clothes waiting to be folded. We added a rolling cart for extra storage in our basement laundry room and it was perfect for storing laundry detergent.
diy floating wood white shelves laundry room closet + wood folding table

DIY Laundry Room Shelf Over Washer Dryer

Here is a look at the shelves completed and wow, what a transformation!

5 ways to utilize shelves for storage
loving my laundry room shelves that were so easy to make

Want to see the full before and after and ALL the images of this space?

Be sure to click through this post, small laundry room reveal where you will find many more pictures as well as the resource list for this space. With a little DIY know how and a few pieces of wood, you can get this look as well.

More DIY Closet Shelving Posts You Will Love

Laundry Room Organization Products You Will Love

Be sure to click through to our Amazon Storefront page to see our curated list of laundry room products to get this look!

These DIY floating laundry room shelves took my dad and I about 3 hours to construct.

Depending on the number of shelves you need, will determine how quickly this project will take but honestly, the part that takes the longest is cutting the wood. We removed the laundry closet doors and track so now the space is part of the bathroom.

DIY Floating Shelves Printable Tutorial

Transform your ho-hum laundry room by adding simple floating shelves to hold your detergent and other supplies! This is a very simple project perfect for beginners and it comes together faster than you'd expect.
Print Instructions
Easy organization projects diy floating shelves laundry room


  • drill bit to drill pilot holes if necessary
  • 3 inch wood screws (or drywall screws)
  • stud finder
  • Measuring tape
  • pencil for marking measurements
  • paint roller or brush
  • paint tray

Supply List

Floating Shelves

  • 4 2" pine wall cleats trim 2-inch wide strips to fit your space (2 long pieces and 4 cleats)
  • 2 1″ x 20″ pine for shelf tops
  • 2 2 3/4" pine boards

Laundry room table

  • 3/4" AC plywood (4' x 8') for folding table; get a piece sized to fit your space
  • 1 4" board for covering the space behind the washer & dryer
  • 1 2" board to create a lip to prevent anything from falling beind the appliances


  • filler for filling any holes
  • sandpaper
  • white paint

Instructions : Step by Step

Cut wood to size

  • Trim 1"x2" pine boards to fit the depth of your space (these are the cleats).
    4 2" pine wall cleats
  • Cut the 3/4 inch AC plywood pieces to make the shelf tops and for the surface over your washer and dryer.
    3/4" AC plywood (4' x 8')

Find the studs & measure

  • Find the studs and gauge how high you want each shelf (measure your storage bins or largest bottles to find the necessary space between shelves).

Install the shelves

  • Using a level, tack the long 2" inch pieces into place. Then, use the drywall screws to attach the piece to the wall studs.
  • Tack the shorter cleats in place. Be sure to use a level to check for evenness. Then, use the 3" drywall screws to secure the cleats into the wall studs.
  • Add the 1" x 20" boards on top of the cleats and tack them in place with the brad nailer.
    2 1″ x 20″ pine
  • Use the brad nailer to attach the 2 3/4" inch pieces to hide the lip of the shelves.
    2 2 3/4" pine boards

Install the tabletop

  • Install the trimmed plywood piece above washer and dryer.
  • Fill in any gap between your plywood and the wall by attaching a 4" piece of plywood with tacks. Then, install a 2" trim piece along the back of the wall.
    1 4" board, 1 2" board

Prepare for painting

  • Apply wood filler to any holes and allow it to dry. Sand down any build-up.
  • Lightly sand all of the surfaces. Wipe them down with a damp cloth to remove excess dust.
  • Roll on a coat of white paint using a dense foam roller or brush.
    white paint
  • Allow the paint to dry fully before adding your containers or bottles.


  • Customize your design. If you’d prefer only to have one shelf, just halve the amount of materials you need. To make 3 or 4 shelves, be sure to gather enough supplies each shelf.
  • If you prefer a more rustic look, feel free to use a wood stain instead of paint. Be sure to allow the stain to dry fully then clear coat it with polyurethane or shellac.
  • Use your level. Make sure each cleat and back support is perfectly level to avoid spills and slopes.
Author: Jessica Bruno

Want to see the full before and after and ALL the images of this space? Be sure to click through this post, laundry room reveal where you will find many more pictures as well as the resource list for this space. With a little DIY know how and a few pieces of wood, you can get this look as well.

In need of a well-organized space? Incorporate DIY floating shelves into your laundry room for stylish and functional storage. Maximize space, organize essentials, and add a touch of charm to your laundry area. !

Meet Jessica

What started as a hobby, Jessica’s blog now has millions of people visit yearly and while many of the projects and posts look and sound perfect, life hasn’t always been easy. Read Jessica’s story and how overcoming death, divorce and dementia was one of her biggest life lessons to date.


  1. Floating shelves aren’t always very sturdy, so I am loving this idea for our future laundry room reno. Also your new washer and dryer look dreamy! I hope you enjoying them!

  2. Rick Woodward says:

    Am in the middle of this project and had installed the cleats ( the 1X2s) on two sides. I discovered that there is a heating duct behind the third side. I was using plastic, self-screwing anchors because there was no stud behind the wall. Fortunately, I did not drill into the duct.The stud finder did not of course pick up the duct, which is almost touching the drywall. My question, can you think of any way to attach the cleat? I am stumped right. now. Thanks.

  3. Great tutorial! What is the color/brand of paint did you use on the walls?

    1. Yes! I’d, also, love to know the brand and name of the paint color! Love it!

  4. Shannon B. says:

    Do you know the source of those metal baskets? I love them!

  5. I love these! I am fairly new and inexperienced with DIY projects, and I still don’t have a lot of tools. Did you cut the wood yourself, or could I get Home Depot to do it for me?

    1. We cut the wood ourselves but they will cut the wood (if you bring the measurements) to Home Depot or lowes. Most local lumber yards will also cut the wood for you šŸ™‚

  6. George Manswell says:

    Just wanted to post a note, for the cleats… If you reduced the length by the width of the front piece, it would sit flush with the corner instead of protruding because of the front piece. That way it would look like its custom (since it is) and the whole thing would look much cleaner.

    Not to be critical, just my OCD kicking in.

  7. George manswell says:

    Why only post the positive comments? My previous comment was only to try and make your diy even better.

    1. Patience my friend! All comments are published once or twice throughout the day šŸ™‚

      1. George, Jessica took your comment as being positive. Therefore she thanked you for your tip.
        Stop being so OCD and chillax.

  8. Very lovely!! I really like the color of the walls. Can you share what color/brand that is?

      1. Thanks for the paint info. Loving your blog!!

  9. Mama Gina says:

    EXACTLY what I am looking for. Yours looks fab! And the how-to instructions are so clear, I may not even have to wait for my husband! I only have one side wall to attach to, so think I will place pillar like legs on the front end of the “folding table” to add stability. I do love the “backsplash” addition as well to keep things from falling behind the washer.
    I just found your blog, but I can’t wait to check out all the other goodies here. Beautifully done, thank you!!!

    1. Thank you šŸ™‚ I love that laundry room now…..even though I despise laundry! ha

  10. Where are those wicker baskets from?

  11. I LOVE this! This may be a stupid question, but do you have any issues with the plywood and splinters? Did you sand it? Or did painting it eliminate that? I wanted to get a countertop above my washer/dryer, but this looks so simple that I think I could do it!

    1. Never mind. I see now that you purchased “sanded” plywood. šŸ™‚

  12. Love the laundry room. Can you tell me how much weight you think the shelves may hold. My shelves would be about 6 feet long, and I am wondering if I could put something in the middle to hold it.

    1. You could always buy those shelf braces at Lowes or Home Depot and add it to the middle of each shelf

      1. Makes sense. Love this idea. Dragging the husband out now for supplies. Wish me luck!!!!!!!!

  13. What did you use to finish the shelves? They are so shiny and smooth they don’t even look painted. Curious what paint and if they are rolled or brushed. Thanks! Dreaming of implementing this in our cluttered, wire shelf space!

    1. Hi, I used the color extra white by sherwin williams (semi gloss) / Emerald Interior. Glad you like it šŸ™‚

  14. Lovely laundry! How did you hang the metal basket?

  15. Stephanie Bodger says:

    Getting ready to implement this! Was thinking I’d paint first. You didn’t though. So you didn’t scrape the new paint?? Also wondering if you rolled, brushed, or sponged the shelves. Thanks!

  16. Hi! I know you posted this awhile back but I am curious as to how your folding table is holding up. Do you notice it sagging at all in the middle? I love the way you did yours, not having a center “brace” but just wondering after months of use if you have noticed any change.

    1. The folding table is perfect! We ran a center brace along the back wall so that prevents the sagging. Also, by adding trim on the front of the table, that helps as well šŸ™‚

  17. Hi! Love your blog! We’re purchasing a new home and I’m seriously considering this project for our new laundry closet which will be in a bathroom – very similar to your set-up. Just wondering if you’ve encountered any issues with having to get to the back of the units for any reason? Are the shelves just resting on the cleats?

      1. Hi,

        I was wondering if you could provide the link for the folding table tutorial? I am having trouble finding it. Thanks so much!

  18. becky ezra says:

    thank you very much!
    Is it possible to use it for wall draw too?

    Thanks again!

    Enjoy yr weekend

    The Netherlands

    1. I hate he washers. Do you like the way they wash. Btw love the tutorial on floating shelves. Thanks

  19. Love this, I have 4 separate rooms that need shelving, and it doesn’t have to be heavy duty… This is perfect and look great..

  20. thank you for a wonderful tutorial as that’s exactly what I’m planning to do. I have a few questions. How did you handle the pipes and other hook ups? i saw them on the in-progress photos but not on the final ones. My electrical plugs and pipes are above the floating shelf level as well. Thank you for your kind response. Leanna

    1. All of the pipes and electrical outlets are still there, they are behind the washer/dryer. The folding table also is a couple inches above the units so it hides most of them. You can still see abut an inch of the water pipe in the far corner but it’s mostly hidden šŸ˜‰

  21. Love! I was wondering.. What’s the wall color?

  22. My laundry room is also in the bathroom closet. Problem is that the dryer is gas, so the whole thing had to be stacked. Now I have no idea where to find space with just 15 inches on each side. Any advice??? Thanks!

  23. That backsplash is a great idea! Can’t count how many times I’ve had to retrieve a sock from behind my washer!

  24. What an amazing way to add storage. My kitchen has little storage space but enough room to add a whole new cabinet. I Love , love this thanks for sharing.

  25. Hi there,

    We love your shelves! How did you attach the piece of 2″ pine to the front of the floating shelves?

    Thanks for your response. We hope to do this DIY this weekend!

    1. Gorilla glue and finish nails (just gently tacked). Fill nail holes with putty and paint šŸ™‚

  26. Can’t wait to try these floating shelves , thanks. One ? Though what does the term. Cleat mean?

  27. I know this was a while ago, but I just found your beautiful shelves and would love to know approximately how deep they are? I’m getting ready to add a similar setup in my laundry closet.

    Thank you!

  28. Catherine says:

    What is a cleat? I’m in the UK and new to all this DIY stuff but I would love to be able to do this project!

  29. How did you installed yuor backsplash ? You have the faucets and one pipe of plumbery sitting agains the wall?

    Nice project

  30. What color is the paint on the walls and who makes it? Your room is lovely.

  31. Sorry if I missed this in an earlier comment, but I am curious as to the kind of weight that this style of floating shelf can hold (we would likely put plates and what not on it). Do you have any sense of this, particular since you didn’t provide any sort of perpendicular support to the wall so as to offset the weight? Thanks.

    1. Hi, we did cleats along the back and the side but you are right , we didn’t do a middle support. Our weight was probably around 10 lbs with everything on it so you may want to do a center support or connect the clean from each end across the front and run a support clean down the middle. L brackets are useful too but will not give you that clean/floating look.

  32. What do you think of your front loading washer? I want one so I can build a folding table above, but I hear they can have a mildew smell.

    1. I actually like mine but yes, if water sits too long on the water drain it can cause a smell but it’s not really an issue with the washer , it’s an issue with the drain setup . We found that our pipe was raised above the drain (we moved it below the drain/faucet) so it was below. That way the water doesn’t have a pocket to sit in!

  33. This is great. Can I ask what you used for the shelves, the pine? How deep are they? Sorry, new to DIY and wanna give this a try!!

  34. Hey! Do you happen to know how much weight the floating shelves can support? Our walls are about 6 feet apart, and Iā€™m wondering if I need to put some sort of support rod under the center of each shelf. Thanks!

    1. I would add support to yours . We did a cleat along the back wall so it was floating (I didn’t want to visually see a support center piece) šŸ™‚

  35. Lyndy Orange says:

    Hi, thank you so very much for this. I almost gave up with my Laundry room remodel due to the expense. This gave me the motivation to continue with my laundry room remodel.
    I noticed that you completed the room a couple years ago. I am a little nervous about how the Plywood held up on top of the washer dryer especially with the sagging problem. Have you had any issues?

    1. Hi, we actually ran cleats along the back wall which prevented sagging. Yes, it was at our old house. If you are worried about sagging you could always run another piece of wood underneath (more towards the back so you can’t see if from the front) to give it more support.

  36. Great idea but was wondering if the folding shelf is removable? what happens if you need to service the machines?

    1. Hi yes you could make it so if you needed to unscrew it you could or simply lay the shelves on the cleats and lift off.

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