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How to Install Wire Shelving

Image of three wire shelves sitting on tableImage of supplies angle brackets, retaining clips, end capsImage of after wire shelves installed on wall above table, art supplies stocked on shelf

Intermediate DIY Project : Install Wire Shelving

In this DIY project, I’ll take you through the steps to install ventilated wire shelving as I did for the purpose of craft storage as opposed to a closet space.  Typically closet spaces use a slider track- you know, the long metal tracks on the wall that you hook metal angle brackets into, and can adjust shelves up and down.  I did what’s considered a permanent installation, so no slider tracks in this post.

If you ever find second-hand wire shelving-get it…unless it’s too bowed.  In that case, leave it!  I lucked out getting three wire shelves (28.5”L x 12”D) for free along with a bag of random pieces I had to make sense of.  I knew right away they would be perfect for my craft room storage I just had to figure out how to piece it all together properly.  

The great news is that ClosetMaid® is still around making the same good ole ventilated wire shelving, so you can still find the replacement pieces, brackets, and clips for installation here.  You can even download a PDF Instruction Guide, but if those make your brain hurt like they do mine you’re in the right place.  You get to learn from my mistakes, and photos make everything easier to understand, right!?! 

Oh, the tools and supply list is included for you at the end of this post!

Please note this post contains affiliate links which means if you decide to make a purchase through one of those links I will make a small commission.

Gathering The Pieces

My husband and I visited our local major hardware store’s closet organization section.  They had a large display of the various shelving options, and a handy brochure which helped us to visually see how we wanted the shelves set-up, and what we needed to get to install wire shelving.

Image of purchased angle brackets and free bag of miscellaneous pieces like end caps and retaining clips

We only needed to purchase Angle Brackets to mount under the shelves, and attach to the wall.  We purchased the 12” Support Brace which is for use with the 12” Shelving.  Your Support Brace(Angle Bracket) size will depend on the size of your shelf…12”deep shelf=12”Support Brace.

In the little bag of odds n ends I had discovered the End Caps (rubber caps for straight ends of wires), and Retaining Clips (holds shelf to wall) with nails and such-that was all we needed!

To Re-Purpose Parts or Not To Re-Purpose Parts?

Image of back of angle bracket product bag showing maufacturer's tools required being a level, hammer, tape measure, drill, 1/4" drill bit


Each parts bag will show you the tools needed, and what’s included.  The Angle Brackets I purchased came with the one screw and drywall anchor.  If you have too many missing pieces from trying to re-purpose old shelf sets, it may be easier to purchase new parts instead of trying to figure out the right size nails and screws.  Don’t make this DIY too hard on yourself!

Let’s Get Started!

Optional:  You may want to cut some of your shelving to join through a corner and continue around a room or simply to have a smaller shelf.  For that, you can use a hacksaw. 

Decide on your desired shelf height, and make a light mark on the wall the full length of the wire shelf.  This is your guideline.

*Tool Tip:  Sometimes you may have a wall that isn’t level or is heavily textured.  You may prefer to use a Bubble Stick which has flex to it, so it can lay along the wall.  As a kid, I remember my Dad always had one of these and I thought it was the coolest thing…it’s a long ruler with levels built-into the center sections.  So nifty!

Retaining Clips

As you’re holding the shelf on the wall figure out a balanced spacing for the Retaining Clips based on your weight requirements according to the manufacturer’s guidelines, and mark each spot.  The wire shelf will snap down into the clip, so you cannot have it placed with a perpendicular wire in the way.  If it ends-up being wrong you’ll have to slide the shelf to the side which may affect the placement on the other clips, and your design of the shelves on the wall.

Image using stud finder to locate studs in the wall


Retaining Clips are designed to go into drywall, and not a stud.  Use your stud finder to locate the studs, so you don’t hit them.  Adjust your clip placements as needed along your guideline.  

Drill a hole where you want the retaining clips placed.  Then insert the clips in the hole, and then hammer in the nail.


*Note: Retaining Clips have a ¼” difference between the hole and shelf placement.  Since I had measured where I wanted the shelf I then measured a ¼” above each mark for each hole.  Double check your shelves will be level and are lined-up properly by simply holding them up to the wall.  My shelves were a little bowed, so I had to make some adjustments to level them out.  


image of mistake hole and new placement of retaining clip not in a stud


Oops!  As you can see we goofed by hitting a stud further back in the wall, and had to pull the clip out and move it over.  I didn’t bother filling the hole, because the shelf hides it.



Image of wire shelving hanging down along wall by being clipped into installed retaining clips


After the Retaining Clips are installed, and the shelf is snapped into place you’ll need to leave the shelf hooked, and hanging while moving-on to the next step.  

Angle Brackets

First, decide on spacing for your Angle Brackets.  You want proper support, but you may decide you prefer a symmetrical look with two brackets on one shelf or spaced out to have three brackets on a shelf or three across two shelves.  The manufacturer recommends one bracket every 36”, and/or at the end of each shelf.  

Optional:  You may opt to drill into studs if your storage needs require it.  In that case, you won’t need the drywall anchors, and you’ll need to locate the studs.

The Incorrect Way to Install Brackets

DO NOT make this mistake….Oops! Again!  We put the anchor in the wall without the bracket in place. 

Image of mistake placing anchor into wall without bracket in place, anchor is larger than hole in bracket

Troubleshooting Tip:  To remove a drywall anchor, you need to use something strong yet thin to hook into it and pull it out.  Sometimes a pair of pliers will do the trick.  Do not just hammer it further into the wall.  That makes for a nightmare repair by creating more work for yourself.  

The Correct Way

Image of properly installing angle bracket with it in place when inserting drywall anchor and screwing into place


With the Angle Bracket in place under the shelf and against the wall (check to make sure it’s level), drill the hole, and then place the drywall anchor and then screw in place securing the bracket.    



Once you have your shelves in place, stand back and enjoy your handy work!  Then gather everything to go on the shelves, and organize away!  I’m still working on that part, but it’s functional, and got things off the floor!

I still need to get the pieces to join the two wire shelves together, so for now I zip tied them to keep them at the same height-one kept falling slightly.

Afterthoughts…little things, and long things fall through the shelves.  I think a DIY wood shelf covering will be the next step!  

PS Do you see that drill sitting on my table?  Hubby says this can stay in the craft room! So excited I have my own drill now!

Required Tools for this Project:


Phillips screwdriver
Cordless Drill 
Drill Bit Set
Safety Glasses
Stud Finder  
Tape Measure
Optional:  Bubble Stick

Required Materials for this Project:

Wire Shelving
Angle Brackets
Retaining Clips
End Caps
Optional:  End Brackets, Back Wall Clips

DIY Jewelry Box

How to Turn a Vintage Wooden Box into a

Unique Boho-Inspired Jewelry Box

DIY Jewelry Box Using Unicorn SPiT™ Gel Stain!

Please note this post contains affiliate links like this one… Unicorn SPiT gel stain

I found this old wooden box (fantastic carved details) at a local antique store, and decided it would make a great DIY project to use Unicorn SPiT gel stain. I decided the size made for a perfect little jewelry box; measures about 8″w x 5″d x 2″h. A couple little cracks on the bottom which I filled with wood glue, but still a beautifully handcrafted find.  I tend to forget to take a ‘before’ photo, so shown is after I was a few steps into the project.  If you’re a beginner DIY’er this is a great project to start with.  You can find all the materials used at the bottom of this post.

Stripping the Finish


I started by stripping the clear finish off the box using dish soap. I rubbed a little water and soap all over the box and let it sit for a couple minutes. If it started to dry I put a little more water on it. Then I used a metal scraper to gently scrape off the finish. I found this method on Featured on here.  It worked great! I also gave it just a light sanding to get all of the remaining finish off.


Painting with Gel Stain

I started painting with the gel stain by using undiluted Unicorn SPiT™ in Pixie Punk Pink™ just as you would paint; hand painting it directly on the flowers and letting it dry.

Using the same paintbrush, I dipped it in water and blended the color, thinning it out a little. I focused on the crevices since I was going to add a second color to accent.



To paint the center, I used red undiluted Unicorn SPiT™ in Molly Red Pepper™, full-strength then doing the same blending with water as I did to the pink.




Dry Brushing and Layering Colors

For the remaining of this project I mixed colors using my four base colors: Blue Thunder™, Pixie Punk Pink™, Molly Red Pepper™, Navajo Jewel™ (all Unicorn SPiT™). By using all the colors to make multiple new colors everything blended nicely and I achieved a lot of layering of the colors and differentiation throughout the entire piece.


The circles became a shade of purple. I just played around with the colors on a palette to get different colors I liked then dry brushed each one all over.  Aside from the flowers and circles, everything was dry brushed.




Here’s the inside with some light dry brush layering done. As you can see I did not overlap a lot of the lighter colors. I would do one color at a time then mix something different and add that all over.


Creating the Inside Jewelry Storage Area

I used a watercolor painting on paper which I cut to fit the base of the inside of the box. I had some craft rope/trim I also measured for around the inside.  A piece of foam, and an old shirt I found to make a ring holder.

**Note:  Make sure you take into account the thickness of any material you’re covering the ring holder with, and any trim pieces that may go between the holder and the wall of the box.  Put everything in place to double-check your measurements.

After these were all measured I set them to the side, and sprayed several coats of Polycrylic over the box. While that was drying (layer after layer), I coated the watercolor paper with several coats of Mod Podge, and allowed it to dry.  I used an exacto knife to cut several deep slits (don’t cut all the way through!) in the foam block.  You can make yours whatever size and shape you want to fit your box.  Just use good scissors or a blade to cut through the foam.

Making the Ring Holder

I re-purposed material from an old shirt and jeans(wrapped around sides) to cover the ring holder.  To make the ring holder, I laid the material on a table and put the foam slit-side down on top of the material. I glued the top end (use a side without the slits), then I put glue in the first base of a slot, and used a small crochet hook to push/wrap the material up into the slot then slid the hook out. This gave me a way to wrap the material around each section without getting my fingers too close to the glue and risk burning myself.  You could use the handle of your paint brush, too.  You can never be too careful while using a hot glue gun.

Assembly Time!

To assemble the inside, I first glued down the watercolor paper, the rope trim, and lastly the ring holder.

As you can see, I added a little piece of rope which I looped and hot glued under the edge of the lid, so that I can pull it open easily.  The poly darkened it a little (happens with the Unicorn Spit™ gel stain), but sealed it nicely.  That’s it!  Although it doesn’t hold a lot, I love how it turned out plus it looks so cool on top of my dresser.

Materials I used for this project:

You can get a variety of colors in this set: Unicorn SPiT™ Gel Stain & Glaze in One – 10 Paint Collection

Basic Materials You’ll Need, But Should Have On-Hand:

How to Clean Adhesive Off Your Wall Stencil

After completing this gorgeous stenciled accent wall…I needed to figure out how to clean adhesive off a stencil.

I had a very filthy stencil coated with layers of spray adhesive.  Maybe you’re better than I, and cleaned-up your stencil immediately after your project, and it wasn’t such a mess.  Although, if you’re reading this post that probably isn’t the case, and you may-like me, have left your stencil for some time without cleaning it.

At first, I tried pealing it off.  That proved to be a long task that would likely take all the skin off my finger tips.  Thankfully, my genius husband had a light bulb moment one day, and suggested trying the good ole garage staple, WD-40®.  At that point I had figured if I couldn’t get the adhesive off (so far not so much), then the stencil was worthless anyway. So, why not give it a try!?!  I quickly went to the garage and gathered my supplies…

Complete Supply List:

  1.  WD-40®
  2. Disposable plastic, old sheet, etc. to protect surrounding area.
  3. Disposable Gloves, and any protective wear you want or WD-40® recommends.
  4. Disposable towels, thicker ones are better to allow you to scrub with.
  5. Scraping tool such as a dull paint scraper, plastic scraper, etc.                        **Using a scraper will scratch your stencil, so if you care then only use a towel.
  6. Liquid dish soap
  7. Area to wash off your stencil preferably nearby, and outdoors.
Here’s the sad, adhesive coated stencil, and my previous removal attempts…

Step 1:  Do a spot test to make sure this won’t damage your stencil.

Step 2:  Spray WD-40® generously over all the adhesive (follow can’s rules for usage), and let it soak-in for 5-10 minutes.

Step 3:  Gently scrape off the loosened adhesive from the entire stencil.

Just do a quick once-over.

Step 4:  REPEAT application to areas as needed.

Step 5:  Wipe off with your disposable towel and/or scrape (carefully) as necessary.

Step 6:  Wash your stencil with soap and water.

Step 7:  Repeat if needed.  Otherwise, enjoy the beauty of your clean stencil!  And plan that next stencil project today!

I hope you enjoyed this tip to clean adhesive off a stencil.  If you have a great cleaning tip please share with us in a comment below.



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