Architect Stephen Atkinson wanted a built-in bookcase in his condo living room, but he couldn’t afford the $3,000 price tag. He favored floating shelves—which cantilever from the wall, have no side panels, and don’t touch the floor—in order to keep some breathing room at the bottom and not lose square footage in an already small space. But to build what he wanted would have meant tearing the wall apart. Instead, he purchased a metal wall shelving system (available at home improvement stores) and devised a clever way to dress it up.
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