Wall-mounted shelves are ideal for showing off photos, artwork, or any prized possession and fit easily in tight places. Ellen Kosloff, a pro organizer with Julie Morgenstern Enterprises in NYC, suggests hanging them throughout the house. "Beautiful objects should be enjoyed everywhere, not in one museum-like spot," she says.
—Mix it up. Instead of exhibiting an entire collection, which can be overwhelming, select a few favorite pieces and rotate in new ones periodically, says Kosloff.
—Keep loads light. Floating shelves are not typically designed to support a lot of weight (some hold no more than a few pounds) so be sure to consider what you plan to put on them before purchasing.
—Go for drama. Take a cue from Washington, D.C., interior designer Darryl Carter and lean a single framed canvas or photograph on a narrow shelf painted to match the wall. The art will "look like it's floating and take on a cool three-dimensional effect," he says.