• Guide – Shelves & Brackets

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    Decorate both horizontally and vertically with airy shelves and shelving systems – combine brackets and shelves to create a customised and built-in storage solution. Build an entire shelving wall for books, fine china, handmade ceramics, potted plants, and children's LEGO creations. Or choose different shelf depths to create a workspace or craft corner with accompanying storage space. Maybe an open kitchen shelf with shelves and wooden brackets that match the wood of the dining table and chairs. The possibilities are endless!


    It's great that you're considering a new shelf or an entire shelving system! Shelves provide wonderfully open spaces and also contribute to a personal and genuine feeling in the room. Do you want several rows of shelves or a single shelf in the kitchen or bathroom? Start by considering and listing your needs and desires. Then check off the following points to simplify the decision-making process when choosing the optimal shelf or shelving system:

    1. Placement
    In which room will the shelf be mounted? The kitchen, study, hallway, children's room, living room, or perhaps the bathroom? Carefully measure the wall area where the shelf or shelving system will be placed. What is the wall material where the shelf will be mounted? Whether it's a wall of wood, plaster, brick, lightweight concrete, or concrete, mounting can be done – secure hanging involves using the right type of drill and appropriate fittings.

    2. Usage
    What do you plan to place on the shelf? The weight and size of the items intended for the shelf will determine the depth of the shelves and therefore the size of the brackets. Heavier items such as china, wine bottles, and books naturally require sturdier solutions, while smaller everyday items or a child's collection of stuffed animals won't weigh as much.

    3. Type of Shelves
    Do you want wooden brackets with matching solid birch or oak shelves? Or a Sparring shelving system with metal brackets that attach to hanging rails or wall rails in metal? What fits best in your home and for the intended use?


    There are several storage options that fall into the shelf category. But if you want to decorate with solid wood shelves resting on brackets, there are two different options:

    Shelf with Wooden Brackets

    Both shelves and brackets are available in Scandinavian wood types, birch, and oak. Choose whether to finish with oil, pigmented oil, soap, or even paint. The brackets themselves can also be obtained in selected lacquer and tempera colours.

    Shelf with Metal Brackets

    The Sparring shelving system can be mixed and matched according to specific needs and preferences. There are two ways to mount the Sparring shelving system:
    1. Use wall rails that attach directly to the wall – the brackets are hooked into the wall rail.
    2. Use a top track that is attached horizontally to the wall the hanging rails are easily hooked onto the support bar and can be moved horizontally as needed. The brackets are hooked into the hanging rails.
    Combine with shelves in birch or oak, in various lengths and depths.

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    Choosing Brackets and Shelves

    Shelves provide wonderfully open spaces and also contribute to a homely feeling in the room. With brackets and shelves from Norrgavel, you have the flexibility to create a solution that fits perfectly in your home.


    Generally, the heavier the items you place on your shelf and the deeper the shelf, the longer the bracket arm against the wall must be – according to the lever principle. Otherwise, let personal preference guide you in choosing brackets for your new shelves.

    Wooden brackets are available in solid oak or solid birch. Match with your chosen wood type for the shelves and enhance the wood’s living structure with a finish in oil, pigmented oil, or soap. Another option is, of course, to choose a wooden bracket painted in a beautiful lacquer or tempera colour that fits with the room's other furnishings and colour scheme. For the Sparring shelving system you can choose brackets, hanging rails & support rails or wall rails in one of the harmonious lacquer colours.

    Rules of Thumb for Brackets:

    - It is always the longest arm of the bracket (the one with a screw hole) that should be attached to the wall. And it’s two screws in the shelf.  
    - The guideline is that the length of the bracket (the part that is attached to the shelf) should be at least 4/5 of the shelf depth.
    - A rule of thumb is that brackets should be placed about 70-80 cm apart. For a shelf that is 120 cm long, however, it is usually sufficient with two brackets. If you plan to place extra heavy items on the shelf, it’s always a good idea to have smaller intervals between each bracket.  
    - The heavier the items you plan to place on the shelves, and the deeper the shelves are, the longer the bracket’s “leg” against the wall should be for increased stability/durability. According to the laws of physics, the leverage effect (and the risk of the shelf with all items falling to the floor) is reduced when you extend the distance between the upper extraction point and the lower pivot point.

    Recommended bracket for each shelf


    Norrgavel’s shelves in solid birch or oak are sized to fit all our bracket models, making it easy to build a customised storage solution according to needs, preferences, and taste. The shelves come in several lengths and depths. If you appreciate slightly softer shapes, there is also a Rounded Shelf in solid oak, with rounded corners and semi-circular milled edges. The Rounded Shelf is sized to fit the Rounded-Straight Bracket 28.5 and the Sparring Bracket 27. The extra deep shelf, Writing Surface, makes it possible to create a desk area built into a Sparring shelving system.

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    Cutting Shelves

    The shelves come in various standard lengths, but it is possible to get help cutting the shelves if needed. Customised dimensions and cut with precision. When buying in-store, the staff will help place the order for cutting the shelves as desired.

    When purchasing via the website:
    1. Place the order for shelves as usual.
    2. Send an email to our customer service at order@norrgavel.com with the order number and the desired length of the shelves to be cut, and we will arrange this before the order is shipped from our production in Lammhult.

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    When all decisions are made, and brackets, any hanging rails/wall rails, and shelves are in place. Yes, then the final part remains – the assembly.

    Mounting – Materials, Drills & Plugs

    Regardless of the material of the wall where you plan to hang your shelf, it is possible to achieve good load capacity. It’s just a matter of identifying the right combination of wall material, drill, and plug. Whether you have walls of panel material (wood or plaster), brick, tiles, lightweight concrete, or concrete, secure mounting involves using the appropriate drill and fittings.

    Start by identifying the type of wall you have to know whether you need a regular drill or a hammer drill. Measure and mark carefully before you start drilling. Also, be sure to check that there are no cables or wires where you plan to drill. Make sure you have the appropriate size drill bit and the correct type of plug. Use a spirit level to check that the shelf is hanging straight.


    How best to design a customised shelving system with an integrated workspace in the study? Which sofa fits best in the living room? How should I furnish the children's room so that it works over time?

    Would you like to receive sound advice and discuss small and large questions regarding the interior design of your home in peace? Then there is the opportunity to book private consultations with one of our skilled interior salespeople. Welcome to book a free consultation visit with us!
    Book a Free Consultation
    If you can't find any available times, please email:order@norrgavel.com


    When buying or planning to buy shelves or shelving systems with brackets, some questions may arise along the way. Here we have collected a selection of common questions. Hopefully, this will clear up some uncertainties. If you don't find the answer to your specific question here, both Norrgavel's knowledgeable customer service are at your disposal.

    How much load can a shelf support?

    How many brackets are needed for a shelf?

    What is the correct orientation of the bracket – which part goes against the wall and which part against the shelf?

    When buying two 120 shelves, can a bracket be placed in the middle – sharing a wooden bracket between the shelves?

    Can I choose a smaller bracket than recommended – for example, an 18 cm bracket for a shelf that is 30 cm deep?

    Do the wooden brackets and shelves need to be surface treated?

    Is there a recommended distance from the edges of the shelf for placing the brackets?

    What screws and plugs should I use for installation?

    Is one screw in the wooden bracket really enough?

    How do you best install Sparring shelves and ensure they are straight?

    What depth should shelves be for storing books, china, and similar items?

    Should you choose a hanging rail or wall rail for the Sparring shelving system?

    What are the best ways to set up my shelves to make them look as nice as possible?