How to Hang Shelves onto Tile!

Let me guess…you have fresh hanging beautiful tile and you’re scared to death to drill holes in it…but you REALLY want need some shelves??! Don’t worry, I was in your shoes and I am safely on the other side. It is possible to hang those shelves without ruining your precious tile and it is NOT as scary as it seems!

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Alright party people! I knew I really wanted open shelves in my Laundry Room to display all the cute laundry knick knacks, but I had just finished tiling my own backsplash and was a little nervous to mess up my new tile. I am here to walk you through it so you don’t have to be nervous like me!

{Step 1: Cut and Stain Your Shelves}

img_8681Cut your boards to the correct length for your wall. No power tools? No problem! Have your local hardware store slice ‘n dice your shelves for you! Give them a light sanding and stain them. I like to use a scrap rag/t-shirt to apply the stain.

{Step 2: Mark your tiles}


Measure and decide exactly where you’d like your shelves to be. Once you decide where to drill the holes for your brackets, use painters tape to make a little “x” and mark on the tape where your holes need to be. The tape will give your drill bit a little traction to start off and keep it from sliding and scratching the tile.

{Step 3: Drill the holes!}

Take a deep breath! Seriously, I know it is scary to drill through your tiles but you’ve got this! Be sure you are using a drill bit specifically made for ceramic tiles. I have linked one HERE for you and also in the supply list. Regular bits WILL NOT drill through your tile and can potentially scratch or crack the tile.

Use steady, consistent and firm pressure while you start drilling into the tile. You do not want to just push super hard as this can strip and wear down the bit, making it very dull and harder to cut through the tile. Every 30-45 seconds or so, spray the tile and the drill bit down with the water bottle to keep it from getting hot and overheating. Drill, spray, drill & repeat. I have to say, I didn’t remember to take pictures of this part because I was SO DAMN FOCUSED on drilling the holes to worry about it…so….sorry!

To be honest, my tile for this project was hard to drill through. The ceramic glazing on the face of the tile took a while to cut through. I had to be REALLY patient. Give yourself time and take breaks when you need it. What I thought was going to be easy peasy and quick did take me a while (and a few curse words!) to finish. Some tiles might be super easy to drill through and others may be more difficult. It just depends on the exact tile you use.


{Step 4: Anchor the Brackets}


To be safe, I used a plastic drywall anchor and screws to make sure my brackets were very secure. These came with the brackets that I purchased.

{Step 5: Steady the Shelves}


Once my brackets were in place, I laid the shelves on top and used a small screw to attach the bracket to the wood from the underside. This made them nice and sturdy and level!


Now, put all your cute knick-knacks, plants and dryer balls on your shelves and be proud of those damn shelves!


I would love to see the projects in your own homes! Follow me on Instagram and tag me in your favorite {DIY} projects!



diy subway tile

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