Step 1: Choose a piece of wood for your shelf
If you’re keeping your floating shelf natural, choose a wood with a nice grain. If you plan on painting the ledge, opt for a sturdy piece of MDF. For this tutorial, we’ve opted for oak. The beautifully patterned grain gives a luxurious finish – but it’s a hard wood, so go slow when it’s time to rout. If you press your router bit too hard into a piece of hardwood, such as oak, it may burn. Another option is fir; a readily available and reasonably priced European wood. It is softer however, which means it’s easier to work with, but more prone to chipping.