These industrial shelves – a.k.a. my Restoration Hardware Inspired Shelves – have been one of my most requested tutorials!

And they’ve been well-used in each of our last three houses in everything from our living room to our kitchen to my office!

These shelves were originally made from reclaimed pallet wood and metal – because it was free. We later switched to thinner new pine when we used the shelves in our kitchen for more stability.

NOTE: The metal can be sourced and likely cut for you at Metal Supermarkets or similar stores.

Industrial Metal and Wood Shelves

open office shelves with bins and baskets, printer and cricut

DIY Industrial Wood and Metal Shelves

Yield: 1 Set of Shelves

Build these industrial wood and metal shelves - they're so versatile and can be used in almost any room.

Materials

  • 4 pieces 68″ long (uprights) angle iron 1.5″ x 1.5″ x 1/8″ thick
  • 2 pieces 29.5″ long (top front and back) angle iron 1.5″ x 1.5″ x 1/8″ thick
  • 4 pieces 13.25″ long (top and bottom sides) angle iron 1.5″ x 1.5″ x 1/8″ thick
  • 2 pieces 30″ long (bottom front and back) flat bar 4″ x 1/8″ thick
  • 10 pieces 14.5″ long (shelf supports) all thread rod 3/8″-16
  • 24 pieces hex bolts 3/8″-16 x 3/4″ long
  • 44 pieces stainless steel acorn nuts (cap nuts) 3/8″-16
  • 20 pieces plated hex nuts 3/8″-16
  • 4 pieces sheared/mitred to fit (gussets) cold rolled steel 1/8″ x 6″ x 6″
  • 1 piece pine board 1″ x 13″ x 29.5″ (top most shelf)
  • reclaimed pallet wood, thickness depends on pallet (shelves) - each shelf totals 13″ x 29.5″ (*we used three pieces of wood for each shelf totalling a depth of 13″)
  • WD-40 or similar degreaser
  • 2-3 cans oil rubbed bronze spray paint
  • Minwax dark walnut stain

Tools

  • lint-free rag
  • drill
  • drill bit 3/8″

Instructions

  1. Measure and drill holes in metal.
  2. Sand all burrs and sharp edges.
  3. Clean parts. Spray with WD-40 or similar degreaser and wipe clean.
  4. Paint all metal parts, including all thread rod. Do NOT paint nuts and bolts. As with all spray painting, paint a thin coat using a back and forth sweeping motion of your hand. Repeat until desired coverage is achieved. Let dry.
  5. Meanwhile cut and sand wood shelving pieces. And stain with dark walnut stain and a lint free rag.
  6. Assemble front and back portion of shelves separately first. Then join together with top and bottom side pieces. Note placement of top angle iron pieces – it is different than the bottom pieces.
  7. Thread hex nuts onto each end of each piece of all thread rod, 2 inches from the ends.
  8. Attach all thread rod between front and back uprights using acorn nuts. Tighten acorn nuts until they touch the angle iron. Then tighten the hex nuts to the angle on the inside.
  9. Put wood shelves in place by setting on all thread rods.
  10. Style and give yourself a pat on the back for a job well done!

Notes

For clarification on some steps, please refer to detail photos and drawing. If you click on the drawing (isn’t Dean AWESOME?!), it will open larger in a new window. Right-click to save so you can refer back to it later.

The metal can be sourced and likely cut for you at Metal Supermarkets or similar stores.

Did you make this project?

Please leave a comment on the blog or share a photo on Pinterest

What you’ll need for one shelf (double everything if you’re making two, like we did):

  • angle iron 1.5″ x 1.5″ x 1/8″ thick
    • 4 pieces 68″ long (uprights)
    • 2 pieces 29.5″ long (top front and back)
    • 4 pieces 13.25″ long (top and bottom sides)
  • flat bar 4″ x 1/8″ thick
    • 2 pieces 30″ long (bottom front and back)
  • all thread rod 3/8″-16
    • 10 pieces 14.5″ long (shelf supports)
  • hex bolts 3/8″-16 x 3/4″ long
    • 24 pieces
  • stainless steel acorn nuts (cap nuts) 3/8″-16
    • 44 pieces
  • plated hex nuts 3/8″-16
    • 20 pieces
  • cold rolled steel 1/8″ x 6″ x 6″
    • 4 pieces sheared/mitred to fit (gussets)
  • pine board 1″ x 13″ x 29.5″ (top most shelf)
  • reclaimed pallet wood, thickness depends on pallet (shelves)
    • each shelf totals 13″ x 29.5″ (*we used three pieces of wood for each shelf totalling a depth of 13″)
  • WD-40 or similar degreaser
  • rags
  • oil rubbed bronze spray paint
    • 2-3 cans
  • Minwax dark walnut stain
  • lint-free rag
  • drill
  • drill bit 3/8″

For clarification on some steps, please refer to detail photos and drawing. If you click on the drawing (isn’t Dean AWESOME?!), it will open larger in a new window. Right-click to save so you can refer back to it later.

Step 1.
Measure and drill holes in metal.

Step 2.
Sand all burrs and sharp edges.

Step 3.
Clean parts. Spray with WD-40 or similar degreaser and wipe clean.

Step 4.
Paint all metal parts, including all thread rod. Do NOT paint nuts and bolts. As with all spray painting, paint a thin coat using a back and forth sweeping motion of your hand. Repeat until desired coverage is achieved. Let dry.

Step 5.
Meanwhile cut and sand wood shelving pieces. And stain with dark walnut stain and a lint free rag.

Step 6.
Assemble front and back portion of shelves separately first. Then join together with top and bottom side pieces. Note placement of top angle iron pieces – it is different than the bottom pieces.

Step 7.
Thread hex nuts onto each end of each piece of all thread rod, 2 inches from the ends.

Step 8.
Attach all thread rod between front and back uprights using acorn nuts. Tighten acorn nuts until they touch the angle iron. Then tighten the hex nuts to the angle on the inside.

Step 9.
Put wood shelves in place by setting on all thread rods.

Step 10.
Style and give yourself a pat on the back for a job well done!

More DIY Project Ideas

Not bad, eh?! What do you think? Fancy making a set of your own industrial shelves?