Example of a floating desk top (courtesy of Phil Curtis):

Phil Curtis' Standing Desk

Phil Curtis' Standing Desk

With increased height, it'd be one of simplest standing desk designs, and I am planning to do this at home. But, I am not sure how exactly the desk top (i.e., the wooden board) is supported against the wall.

As you can see, the design isn't using any heavy-duty shelf brackets, or any apparent support beneath. How can this be accomplished?

(FYI, mine is going to be larger, around double the size of the desk top you are seeing in the picture.)

  • Here's another example: flickr.com/photos/andreaslarsen/8248953223/in/…
    – its_me
    Commented Jun 30, 2013 at 11:03
  • Look closely at the other example; you can see the suppport brackets like Michael Karas describes below
    – Niall C.
    Commented Jun 30, 2013 at 14:04
  • @NiallC. You mean the long stripe in the corner? Yes, I noticed that, but it's stretching from below to far above the desk, to the monitors. Here's a HQ version of the image: i.sstatic.net/5tbCH.jpg
    – its_me
    Commented Jun 30, 2013 at 16:07
  • I meant the one you linked to in the first comment, sorry for the confusion. There's something under the desk, stretching from midway under the laptop on the left to midway under the tablet on the right. I think the "long stripe" in the photos in your post is conduit for the monitor cables.
    – Niall C.
    Commented Jun 30, 2013 at 16:39
  • 1
    That strip in the corner of the first pictures is most likely a mask to cover up cables for power, video and camera for the items mounted on the wall.
    – Michael Karas
    Commented Jun 30, 2013 at 18:20

1 Answer 1


You would need to mount wooden strips along the walls that screw into the studs. Then the desktop sits on top of those strips and is fastened from the underside to the strips.

To achieve a more sleek look you could also consider the use of some lengths of aluminum angle iron that is screwed into the studs and into the bottom side of the desk surface.

Either type of mounting strip could be painted to match the wall to make it much less noticeable.

You will want to get this mounting strip along as many edges as possible and into as many studs as possible. Cantilever forces due to the open out side corner of the desk can be significant so make sure of two key things:

  1. Make sure that the desk top material itself can withstand the cantilever forces without a lot of flex and breakage. (Unsupported thin particle board would not be a good choice).
  2. Make sure that fasteners used up into the bottom of the desk surface get a good bite into the material.

Here is a picture showing a cross section of the wall and desk showing how the aluminum angle stock would be applied. You would likely want to use screws into the studs that are a bit longer than what I showed.

enter image description here

  • Ah, I kinda get the idea now. But, how exactly do I do this: "Then the desktop sits on top of those strips and is fastened from the underside to the strips."
    – its_me
    Commented Jun 30, 2013 at 11:05
  • 1
    @its_me - See added drawing in my answer.
    – Michael Karas
    Commented Jun 30, 2013 at 12:47
  • There are also a few systems that install a pair or more of rigid pipes or solid metal brackets perpendicular to the wall studs (sticking out) and then slide on a fairly thick shelf that has an internal channel to hide the pipe or bracket. Set screws under the shelf then hold it in place. This requires a custom shelf, not impossible for the DIYer, but a challenge. these shelves are usually not too deep. A desk would require some additional support at the outer edge such as Michael Karas has illustrated.
    – bib
    Commented Jun 30, 2013 at 15:27
  • 1
    The "wooden strips" Michael refers to are commonly called cleats, and this is also how cabinets are attached to walls. If this were a shelf, it would be called a floating shelf.
    – rob
    Commented Feb 18, 2014 at 17:35

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.