Wooden shelf brackets dress up the appearance of a shelving system. With a little practice and design, you can be quite original in your own creations. Here's a simple set of wood shelf brackets you can start with.

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Cut the 2- by 6-inch boards with a chop saw, table saw or hand-held crosscut saw into two pieces so that each has a square end.

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Sketch the bracket design on a piece of paper, cut it out with scissors, then trace the design on your 2- by 6-inch board with a pencil. Make the top and back edges about 6 inches long.

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Hold one of the wood pieces firmly on the edge of your work surface with the pencil outline facing up. Cut the brackets out of the board with a hand-held, electric jig saw. Repeat to make the second bracket.

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Sand the edges and faces smooth with 100-grit sandpaper. Repeat with 180-grit sandpaper for a smooth finish.

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Clamp the brackets into a bench vise, if you have one, outside edge up, then drill two holes into each, 2 inches apart, with a 1/4-inch drill bit. The holes should stop 1/2 inch short of the back edge. Hold the brackets firmly against your work surface if you don't have a vise.

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Complete the holes using a 1/16 inch drill bit.