Leather Strap Shelves

2 Materials
1 Hour
Tired of plain, old shelves? Add a touch of Danish Modern with these easy DIY leather strap shelves!
Adding a shelf to an empty wall seems simple, and if your décor style is undetermined, it probably is. Any wooden shelf would do. But what if you are looking for something specific? If you have a rustic farmhouse, you might decide to upcycle an old pallet. A budget-conscious first apartment? The Ikea Lack floating shelf would work. My recent design quandary was a small bare wall in my Midcentury Modern beach condo.
There are lots of shelving units from the 1950s available, but all I needed was a single shelf (or two). I couldn’t go rustic, as most of my furniture is retro modern. I couldn’t go ultra contemporary, as I’ve incorporated into my Midcentury design a few earthy casual touches (such as a live edge wooden dining table). I needed a compromise.  Here’s what I decided. Leather strap shelves with a Danish Modern feel.

First I cut a 3/4″ wooden board into two pieces, measuring 8″ x 24″.    
After sanding the edges, I applied a light coat of oak stain just to add some warmth.
After the stain dried, I applied Country Chic white wax then wiped off the excess. This lightened the oak and gave the wood a slight luminosity. I was aiming for a Scandinavian light wood effect.
Now that the shelves were done, I needed two leather straps for hanging. Here is where I have a grueling confession for any DIYer to admit. I did not cut these leather straps myself (horrified gasps from the peanut gallery). I ordered them from the Etsy shop Leather EU in Slovenia. (Having them shipped from southern Europe lent an international air to my little Danish Modern shelves, don’t you think?) The straps are 1 3/4 ” wide and 39.5 inches long. Anchors and brass screws were included.
The rest was easy. And here’s the result.
Suggested materials:
  • 2 pieces of wood 8" x 24"   (Home Depot)
  • Precut leather straps with screws   (Etsy shop - Leather EU)
Wendy at myfrenchtwist.com
Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!
Frequently asked questions
Have a question about this project?
  2 questions
  • Betty Betty on Jun 18, 2017
    Another idea for the straps could be leather belts

  • Barbara Barbara on Jun 18, 2017
    No question, just wanted to say what a beautiful kitchen you have. Your home must be gorgeous! I use to live in Covington many years ago, is your house a new build or older?

Join the conversation
3 of 52 comments
  • Mor23729089 Mor23729089 on Jun 30, 2017
    I am too, !!! but, over in Europe, they use a lot of dog for leather skins.... that is what I was saying.

  • Susanna Susanna on Jul 10, 2017
    I am going to try this with my dad's old belts and leave the buckles exposed somehow. Great idea! Thank you for sharing your brilliance! :)