10 Different Types of Shelf Brackets You Should Know About
Adding a shelf is a great way to improve the look and utility of a room. The shelf might have a practical use, like holding some of your favorite books, or it might carry some decorative items to help the room pop.
Regardless of what the shelf is used for, you’ll need to be sure that it’s safely attached to your wall and can bear some weight. That’s why you need to know the types of shelf brackets.
Shelf brackets are the supports that hold your shelf in place. They can be made of many materials; metal, plastic, and wooden shelf brackets are all possible choices. Material isn’t the only way shelf brackets differ, though.
Keep reading to learn about ten different types of shelf brackets you can install in your home.
- Angle Shelf Brackets
The most basic style of shelf bracket is the angle bracket. They are also sometimes called “L” brackets because they look like the letter L: a single long piece that is bent at a right angle.
The longer part of the bracket screws into the wall, with the shorter piece at the top of the bracket, perpendicular to the wall. You can then place the shelf on the protruding piece.
These are a simple, unobtrusive type of bracket that is best suited for light to medium shelving loads.
- Heavy-Duty Shelf Brackets
If you’re looking for something that can hold a heavier load (a collection of heavy books, for example), a heavy-duty shelf bracket might fit your needs. They’re a lot like angle brackets, but stronger.
They retain the L shape, and they’re installed the same way. However, they’re made of a thicker, sturdier material, allowing them to carry a lot more weight.
They’re just as understated and stylish as angle brackets, but a bit more versatile.
- Heavy-Duty Reinforced Shelf Brackets
What if you need to put something really heavy on a shelf? Not just a line of books–something with real weight, like a stone statuette? What if you just want the peace of mind to know that your shelf definitely won’t collapse?
If that’s the case, your best bet is heavy-duty reinforced shelf brackets. Again, these feature that familiar L shape and have simple installation. Where these brackets differ, however, is in their support structure.
They have a strut running between the two halves of the L, adding an extra layer of support to the top of the bracket. This allows them to carry a stunning amount of weight.
- Prism Shelf Brackets
Are you looking for something more interesting than the basic designs we’ve covered so far? Have no fear! Prism shelf brackets, like the ones in this collection of shelf brackets, offer a more unique look.
A prism shelf bracket has an eye-catching triangular look, adding some visual flair without sacrificing the structural integrity of your shelving unit. These shelf brackets are a perfect way to add a modern touch to your décor.
- Lip Shelf Brackets
A lip shelf bracket is a twist on the angle bracket. Rather than a straightforward L shape, this bracket features two angles, one at either end of the actual shelf support.
Essentially, this functions as an angle bracket, but with a lip at the end of the shelf support. This lip offers two main features: It holds your shelf in place more securely, and it looks nice! It also adds a rustic design element.
- Floating Shelf Brackets
Floating shelf brackets get their name from the optical illusion they cause: They make your shelf look like it’s floating by the wall with no supports. These brackets are invisible once the shelf is in place.
A floating shelf bracket consists of a long, flat piece of metal with two more pieces protruding from it. You screw the long, flat piece into the wall, then fit the shelf over the pieces that stick out.
These protruding bars can be circular or flat.
- Heavy-Duty Hidden Shelf Brackets
The clean look afforded by floating shelf brackets is very popular, but so is the sturdiness and weight capacity of heavy-duty shelf brackets. Heavy-duty hidden shelf brackets offer the best of both worlds.
A heavy-duty hidden bracket has a much larger mounting plate than a floating shelf bracket. Mount these brackets on a stud and you can increase your shelf’s strength without sacrificing a great look.
These can also be used alongside other bracket styles to reinforce them.
- Hook Shelf Brackets
A hook shelf bracket looks a bit like a lopsided letter U. Much like a lip bracket, it’s a variant of the angle bracket with an extra angle added; this time, both angles bend away from the shelf support in the same direction.
You mount the bracket with the shelf support at the bottom; this gives it a lip that prevents the shelf from sliding off, much like a lip shelf bracket. This bracket makes it look like your shelf is hanging on a hook, hence the name.
- Pipe Shelf Brackets
Prism shelf brackets add a modern look, while hook and lip brackets are great for a rustic room, but what about more niche styles? Pipe brackets are perfect if you’re into the industrial aesthetic.
A pipe bracket is a straight bar that sticks out of your wall, looking like a piece of piping. Simply place your shelf atop the pipes and you’re good to go!
- Folding Shelf Brackets
Folding shelf brackets are just what they sound like: shelf brackets that can fold up. They’re great for offices or other areas where you might need to fold out a shelf temporarily to hold a laptop or something similar.
They can also help you save space, allowing you to fold down a shelf that might otherwise get in the way.
Know the Types of Shelf Brackets
A shelf should be as stylish as it is functional. Understanding the types of shelf brackets available to you can help you choose the wall shelf brackets that are right for your home’s aesthetic.
Are you interested in more ways to spruce up your living space? Visit our travel and lifestyle blog for further ideas to help you step up your home decorating!