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Creative & Fun Bathroom Floating Shelf Ideas

Creative and fun floating shelves in a bathroom

Austin Merrill |

Floating shelves in the bathroom are a must. It's a simple way to add clean, beautiful storage and organization to any bathroom no matter the size. When you are thinking of ways to spruce up and renovate your home, don't sleep on the bathroom. Bathrooms are often overlooked as an area in which design can flourish, but a well-designed bathroom gives your home an expensive, high-end feel.

Because bathrooms and half baths don't usually have a whole lot of space, floating shelves can make a small bathroom feel bigger and help utilize wall space that's going to waste. It can be hard to find floating shelves for the bathroom because a lot of times you need a really specific size, which is where custom floating shelves come into play. Custom floating shelves, like the ones we make here at Ultra Shelf, can be custom-made so that you get to hand pick the length, depth, and color of the shelves in your bathroom. This is great because your decor is completely custom at that point and it gives you the ability to mimic built in shelves if you want.

How to Design a Bathroom with Floating Shelves

When you're designing a bathroom we love starting with a mood board. A mood board is a collection of images, and textiles, and colors that helps you set the tone for a space, and gives you a really good idea of what you want the bathroom to look like when the renovation is done.

Mood boards seem overwhelming at first because professional designers use them, but there is no right or wrong way to go about creating a mood board. So when you're making yours, just do what works best for you. You can be as literal or as vague as you would like to be. See mood boards where people link actual items that they're going to buy for the bathrooms, and we've seen bathroom mood boards that are just swatches of colors and patterns that convey the mood that the space needs to have at the end of the renovation.

When you're designing your mood board we recommend going into the space that you're renovating — whether it's a bathroom, or a half-bath, or a powder room — and looking for places where shelves would enhance the design and increase the organization and storage. Sometimes renovating older bathrooms can seem overwhelming because of the unique layouts, but that is a great opportunity to see where good shelf placement can make the layout look intentional and beautiful.

Once you know the looks that you're going for, it's time to order your shelves. Find the length, depth, and color that works for your space and order your shelves. Because custom shelves take a few weeks to arrive, it gives you the perfect amount of time to paint, prime, or purchase anything that needs to go in the bathroom to complete your new look.

Looks we Love

Feeling inspired but a little stuck? Check out some of our very favorite bathroom Renovations with floating shelves, and we'll tell you why these looks knock it out of the park. All of the floating shelves bathroom ideas you could ever need are just a scroll away.

"B" is for Balance

No matter where you put your shelves in your bathroom, you're going to need to find balance in your styling. Now there are a lot of different ways to go about putting together really well style shelves, and these shelves are a really great example. Sometimes you just need to see how somebody else did it to be able to go and recreate a similar look in your bathroom.

Creating balance across multiple shelves can be tricky. These shelves do it perfectly though, and you can tell because the top and the bottom shelf are visually very similar, but flipped. Where a large white item sits in the left-hand corner of the top shelf, a large white item balances it out in the right-hand corner on the bottom shelf. The same goes with the other items on those shelves. They were specifically placed to balance out the other items in the decor scheme through color, through size, and through height.

If you're looking to create a balanced feel for your bathroom floating shelves, we recommend starting with all of your decor items out in front of you. This way you will know if you need to go find a few different items to create balance, or if you need to scrap something that throws off the balance.

A balanced floating shelf aread

Wall to Wall

If you have the right space for it, wall to wall shelves are a showstopper. Even in a bathroom, wall to wall shelves are great way to maximize the space available to you and look like you really know what you're doing when it comes to design.

Not every bathroom is right for wall to wall shelves, but we love them in this bathroom for a few reasons. One, the designers of this bathroom did not choose shelves that were too thick for the space. When you are layering shelves in a bathroom, especially shelves that touch both walls, you do not want to pick shelves that are so thick that they cover up a lot of the wall. These shelves are thinner, and are still going to hold everything that you need them to hold — but you can see the accent wall behind them and they work with the overall design instead of competing with the other elements in the bathroom.

We also really love the simple styling on these shelves. If you are not someone who loves designing and decorating, pick one design item and stick with it. It's a floating shelf decor hack that totally works. In this case, the bathroom designers picked plants and covered their shelves in different plants — only varying the plant types and pots. It's simple, but from a design perspective it's really impactful.

You can pick another element for your bathroom floating shelves. Use picture frames or glass apothecary jars to create the look you want. You can use the same elements with slight variations repeated across multiple shelves to create a cohesive but stylish look.

Built-In Floating Shelves

Remember how we were talking about utilizing the unconventional spaces in your bathroom for bathroom floating shelves? Yeah, this is what we were talking about. We absolutely love these floating shelves because they mimic a built-in look and they add a really refined look to the space. When you're using custom shelves, getting this look is a lot easier than you’d think. All you need is a measuring tape and you can order completely custom shelves that slide right into any space.

If you're going for a more traditional built-in look, we do recommend having your shelves painted (or painting them yourself) the color of the wall behind the shelves. This will give you a true built-in look. Built-ins are great for a lot of reasons, but when people are building houses adding buildings can be expensive. That’s why adding them in later, (or faking them with floating shelves later) is a great way to go.

Back to Basics

Floating shelves above the toilet is a great way to use space that is rarely used in a bathroom. It may feel like a basic move, but it's a little bit brilliant as well. Shelf space above the toilet gives you room to store essentials, like toilet paper in a cute basket, and add decor to the bathroom that personalizes the room and ups the overall look. These shelves by Nicole aren't styled yet, but we love them for a few reasons.

One, these shelves are the perfect color for this bathroom. The warmth from the shelves works well with the greige cabinets and brightens up the space a little bit. We also like that these shelves are hung high enough that you could add beautiful viney plants to the bottom shelf. We really love plants on floating shelves in bathrooms but if you're going to add a plant to a bathroom shelf you need to make sure that you’ve got enough room for that plant to grow — which is why we think some photos or Ivy would look fantastic on these shelves.

Say Hello to Storage

Floating shelves don't have to be purely decorative in your bathroom. We wanted to show you some floating shelf bathroom ideas where the shelves were mostly used for storage. Some bathrooms come with a lot of closet space, but a lot of bathrooms don't. If you need more storage in your bathroom, adding a few floating shelves can be a really good way to get that storage. We've even had people add floating shelves to bathroom closets for added storage.

You can purchase all sorts of bathroom storage stands and contraptions, but we love the elegance and simplicity of the open shelving in a bathroom as functional storage. Especially when you're storing things on your shelves, you run the risk of your bathroom looking really cluttered. If you want to cut the clutter, floating shelves are a simple statement that can help you do just that.

Sweet Simplicity

Stacking shelves is great for a lot of bathrooms, but even just adding one simple shelf can really elevate the look of the room. Key to making one shelf pop in your bathroom is placement. We are obsessed with this shelf over the tub in Morgan Beer’s bathroom. It’s another space in the bathroom that is rarely utilized.

This shelf works really well with the peg hooks underneath as well. It's part of what makes this design so smart. Instead of layering two shelves, you have a shelf and the set of hooks with a similar length, so there is balance and symmetry, and most importantly, there is functionality.

Functionality in a bathroom is beyond essential. There's no point in having a pretty bathroom that doesn't do what bathrooms need to do. Even a half-bath or powder room can really benefit from a simple upgrade that makes storage and organization more accessible.

Once you’ve decided to add floating shelves to your bathroom, get creative. There are a lot of design ideas and rules out there but the most important thing is that you love your bathroom when you walk in. Custom floating shelves give you the ability to renovate even the smallest bathroom, so don’t back down from a design challenge. Use the space (and a few shelves) to get creative and bring the bathroom to life.