Easy and Affordable Corbel Shelves

DIY Corbel Shelves do it yourself cottage farmhouse style

These simple, easy to build corbel shelves add so much character to our dining space! Today I’m sharing exactly how we made them, what materials we used, and why I love having open shelving so much in our dining room!

Hello friends! Today I’m finally sharing the process of how we made these easy and affordable DIY corbel shelves in our dining room. These shelves were so simple, but after sharing some thrift store dishes on my Instagram stories yesterday I had so many questions about how we built them that I figured I’d write a blog post!

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I absolutely looooove this DIY project for so many reasons. Simple, cheap, but such a BIG impact. My favorite kind of project! Let me explain what we did!

Corbel Shelf DIY tutorial cottage style farmhouse style affordable cheap

We made these shelves before I had my blog, so I don’t have any pictures to show you how we screwed them together and attached them to the wall. I apologize for that. Personally, I know how much pictures help me when I’m reading tutorials. I will do my very best to explain every step, though! They really are so easy!

Supplies Needed for Easy and Affordable Corbel Shelves

1×8 pine boards (how many and how long depends on your shelf sizes)


Measuring Tape


Chop Saw

Weathered Oak Stain by Minwax


White paint 

1” Wood Screws

Hollow wall anchors 


how to build corbel shelves tutorial diy

Easy and Affordable Corbel Shelves – Step 1

My inspiration for these shelves came from my sweet friend Bre at Rooms for Rent blog. If you like mine, you’ll have to check out hers as well! Bre does such an amazing job styling her shelves, she is always giving me ideas!

In order to create our own version, we purchased these gorgeous corbels from Home Depot. They actually come in two different sizes (we used the larger size in our kitchen under our cabinets), but we decided to use the smaller size for these shelves. They come in raw wood, so I painted ours white. 

diy corbel shelf tutorial step by step

I am always asked about the white paint I used throughout our home on our trim, doorways, built-ins, etc. You are going to laugh, but I always just use a basic white right off the shelf from our local True Value Hardware store. It’s not even a color. Haha!

Easy and Affordable Corbel Shelves – Step 2

After painting the corbels we decided how long we wanted our shelves to be. We chose to use 1×8 pine boards, and my husband used his chop saw to cut each shelf 3 feet long.

how to build cottage style corbel shelves tutorial easy and affordable

After cutting the boards to size, I stained each shelf using Weathered Oak Stain by Minwax. I then sealed each shelf with Polycrylic in satin. I love this stuff because it doesn’t yellow over time like Polyurethane does!

Easy and Affordable Corbel Shelves – Step 3

Now it’s time to attach your stained boards to your painted corbels. My husband did this by simply screwing the top of the board down into the corbel with a 1 inch wood screw.

Since my shelves are higher and there is always so much on them, the screw heads are hidden. We chose to attach the corbels 6 inches from the end of each board.

simple, easy diy corbel shelves how to step by step

After the shelves are assembled, we hung them on the wall. This part can be a little tricky, so make sure you use a level. 

The backs of the corbels have a notch in them, so once you hook them onto your screw they drop down about a quarter of an inch. My husband marked his holes on the wall with a pencil, then made sure his marks were level.

Afterwards he drilled holes for wall anchors since the shelves didn’t line up with any studs. Once you add your screws to the anchors, you can just hook and drop your shelves into place.

How to build DIY corbel shelves, cottage farmhouse style

And that’s it! How easy was that?

I love these shelves for so many reasons. Not only do they add character and dimension to our dining space, but they also provide a beautiful display for all my thrifted treasures! It’s so much fun to switch out my plates and pitchers and mix and match textures. 

DIY cottage corbel shelves tutorial wood and white

I hope I answered all of your questions in regards to these shelves. If I missed anything, please let me know! Do you guys love open shelving as much as I do? Let me know in the comments below!

Easy and affordable cottage style corbel shelves diy tutorial

Hope you all have a great rest of the weekend! 🙂


easy and affordable corbel shelves tutorial


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  2. Hi Andrea,

    I was curious where you purchased your mirror in this room. I will be starting this shelf project this week for a different room, but looking for a mirror exactly like this one for our son on the way to go in his nursery. 🙂

    Thank you so much!


    1. Hi Kayla! I got the mirror at Goodwill, but it was brand new with Target tags! I’m not sure if Target still sells it though, it’s been a few years. I hope this helps!

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  5. I love the way you designed this wall! It’s so beautiful! I was wondering if you could help me out as I want to recreate this look in my diningroom! I am wondering how far off the floor is the top of the mirror and also how far off the floor to the bottom of both shelves? If you wouldn’t mind, I would appreciate it! Oh, and maybe the measurement from the side of the mirror over to the shelves too? I just love what you did and so want it to turn out just like yours! You are so very talented!

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