33 Easy Steps to Hang Ikea Ekby Shelf in Two Short Days!

Hey. It's been a minute.

I've been working on several cool projects that I'm excited to tell you about. Also, I've been spending some time becoming an adult, and you'll be hearing from me about the projects and all that adulting another day. 

But today, folks, you're in for a treat. Today we're going to take a well-deserved break from those home shows where everything fits perfectly and gets done right the first time and show you some real life DIY.

At least, real life for me--a person whose imagination greatly outweighs her skill level.

I decided to hang a shelf in the laundry room--a room we've been chipping away at for the past couple of years. I'll post photos of the room someday, once it's finished.

I picked up a couple of Ekby Valter brackets from Ikea because I liked the price and the simple wood shape. I also picked up a precut shelf from Home Depot, approximately 8" d x 47"w for about $7.

Here's the space:

This is how I DIY'd this project.

Step 1: Pick up your kids from school so that all of them are running around while you're trying to figure out shelf placement. 

Step 2: Find the stud finder. The girls play with this thing like it's a spy device so it really could be anywhere. I gave up looking after 35 minutes and borrowed one from the neighbors. 

Step 3: Use stud finder to find studs. This seems pretty straightforward, but because there's so much plumbing/pipes/electrical in the wall, the stud finder didn't work. I'm sure all you carpenter people are cringing because if I would have just done ____, then it would have worked. And I just don't want to hear about it. It's too fresh.

Step 4: Abandon stud finder and feel anger rising in throat.

Step 5: Start tapping nails into the wall every few inches until I find a stud. Pounding nails in the wall helped me working through some anger issues. Fill all the nail holes with spackle and mutter something about how Emily Henderson never has to deal with this type of crap.

Step 6: I chose four long screws with gold heads. I felt so proud that I had four matching screws. This was surely a sign the rest of the project would go well.  

Step 7: Drill holes and level first shelf bracket. The first bracket hung beautifully level. I am amazing. I can do anything. I should have my own tv show.

Step 8: Drill holes and level second bracket. As I was screwing in both screws, they both got stuck about 1/4 inch from completion. I pondered this and then remember that there's a metal pipe in the wall behind the sink that I was probably hitting.

Step 9: Feel rage rising in throat. If I have to move the bracket over, then it's going to be right above the faucet and I wanted both brackets to be centered on the faucet. This shelf is dumb. This project is stupid. Nothing ever works out for me. I am an idiot. Pinterest, I'm breaking up with you.

Step 10: Abandon project and make salad for Wednesday night dinner with neighbors. Complain to all neighbors that the bracket has to be placed directly above the faucet and how this type of injustice just shouldn't be. All neighbors sympathize, but my complaints are met with mostly blank stares.

Step 11: Return home and put kids to bed. Debate lighting shelf on fire.

Step 12: Switch to shorter screws to avoid pipe. 

Step 13: Bracket falls down: screws too short. Vein bulges out of forehead.

Step 14: Use plastic toggle things to hold screws in. Place shelf on brackets. Shelf is level. It's a miracle.

Step 15: Go to bed.

Step 16: Wake up and check shelf. Shelf is still there, still level. It has not fallen down in the night as anticipated.

Step 17: Find screws to mount shelf to brackets. First screw holds shelf in beautifully. I am amazing. I can do anything.

Step 18: Second screw falls behind dryer. Farewell, old friend.

Step 19: Get new screw of same size out of toolbox. New screw won't screw in. Curse the screwdriver.

Step 20: Get other screwdrivers out of screwdriver collection. 

Step 21: None of the screwdriver turn the screw. Curse all screwdrivers. 

Step 22: Change Pandora station from that happy music it's playing to something more epic and dismal.

Step 23: Debate lighting screwdrivers on fire.

Step 24: Get another screwdriver. Hold other screwdrivers hostage until their fate is determined by performance of new screwdriver.

Step 25: New screwdriver turns screw slightly. Check screw. Screw head is completely stripped which is why it's not going in.

Step 26: Inform screwdrivers that I will not be lighting them on fire as previously determined. Apologize to them for hostage situation and get back on their good side. 

Step 27: Take out stripped screw. Light it on fire and dance around the flames.

Step 28: Get new screw. Turn screw three times and watch screw drop into indent of dryer door. 

Step 29: Attempt unsuccessfully to retrieve screw from dryer door. Must open dryer to retrieve screw.

Step 30: Screw drops into dryer and disappears. Empty out all clothes in dryer to retrieve screw.

Step 31: Insert screw. 

Step 32: Take photos and bask in feelings of accomplishment.

Step 33: Check into anger management classes. 

I think I'm going to lie down now.

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