How to Make a Floating Shelf with a Drawer

A floating shelf.
What You'll Need
Stud finder
Masking tape
1/4 inch x 3 1/2 inch lag screws
Wood adhesive/glue
Drawer slides
Drawer handles
1 inch brad nails

Building a shelf drawer is recommended in places with small floor areas but lots of walls. This is designed to keep the space open, un-congested, and provide you with ample storage space. Here is how to make a shelf drawer.

Step 1 - Make Plans for the Floating Shelf

Lay out your plans for your floating shelf. Make sure you have enough wall space to accommodate this. Ideally, the shelf should be reachable, especially since you are installing this shelf with a drawer. It should also be able to hold a bit more weight than a normal shelf.

Using a stud finder, mark the location of the studs with masking tape. Make sure that you are marking out the area where you will attach the drawer box. Use a level as your guide to make sure that your markings are straight.

Step 2 - Cut the Wood

Cut the wood down to your desired size, as this is a shelf with a drawer, this should be long but should allow for some depth as you are going to install a drawer underneath. Because this is a floating shelf, you will need to cut out a deep groove at the back of the drawer box so that it fits tightly along with the cleats that you will need to cut. Use 2x4s for the cleats.

Step 3 - Decorate the Wood

Once the wood has been cut, paint it or use a wood stain. Allow this to dry as painting the shelf and the drawer when it is attached is much more difficult.

Step 4 - Drill the Cleats

Drill ¼ inch holes at the stud locations after you cut the cleats to their desired length. Put the cleat against the markings you have initially made and drill into the stud. Using the lag screws, bolt the cleats into the wall. When finished, it should look like a wooden frame has been put on the wall.

Step 5 - Put Everything Together

Build the drawer box from the wood that you have cut grooves into as this is going to be placed over the cleats. It should be a tight fit. Use a sander for the back portion of the drawer box. Build the drawer with the slides as it needs to be fitted into the drawer box to ensure a smooth glide.

Step 6 - Put the Rollers on for the Drawer

Attach the rollers to the insides of the drawer box. Drill holes onto the front of the drawer to attach the handle. Screw the handle firmly in place. Apply a liberal amount of wood adhesive inside the grooves at the back of the drawer box and over the cleats. Then take the drawer box and slide it over the cleats.

Step 7 - Finish the Floating Drawer

Once the adhesive has dried somewhat, take some 1-inch brad nails and hammer the portions of the drawer box where they meet the cleats. Or you can also drill holes and screw them in place as you wish. Paint over the nails or screws as necessary.