An Exclusive Guide to Corbels & Brackets

Have you been eyeing a set of corbels or brackets but are not sure how to incorporate them into your space? Are you working on a new project that needs stylish support but aren’t sure which corbel to pick? Maybe you just want to learn more about corbels in general and let the inspiration flow from there. We are here to help with all of your corbel needs whether you are looking for a finishing touch for a design or need to nail down a necessary supportive design element for a large project.

What are corbels?

A corbel is a well known architectural component that has been around since ancient times. It was an integral part of architecture with the sole function of providing support. As the original stone and concrete designs transitioned into smaller, wooden pieces, corbels started transforming into decorative components within the home as well as supportive ones. Corbels (also known as brackets) come in a variety of materials, sizes and designs. Osborne offers one of the largest selections of corbels and brackets making it easy for you to find the perfect fit for your project.

What are corbels used for within the home?

Common Uses for Corbels

Countertop Overhang Support

Corbels are commonly seen in kitchens and bathrooms where they sit underneath countertop overhangs and provide extra support. They may not be noticed immediately depending on the application, but this is a great way to enhance an interior design theme without taking away from the rest of the elements within a space. Many kitchen islands, bars and vanities feature corbels. Corbels can also be used to support shallow overhangs without the need for island legs which can create additional leg room.


Shelves can be used in any room and can have virtually any appearance. They are often a necessity for organization but have you thought about using shelves as main decorative accents within your room? Corbels allow you to turn your shelving into more of an impressive display. We offer several small corbels that can be used for your pantry, kitchen or bathroom shelves. We also offer larger designs that can hold up a large entryway shelf. If you are interested in corner shelves, corbels are great supportive options. There are endless possibilities when it comes to supporting shelves with corbels, plus it is super simple to do.

Fireplace Mantels

Fireplace mantels often feature large overhangs which creates the perfect space for corbels to be used. The fireplace is often the main focus of a room and it is sure to gather the attention of your guests.

Choosing a complementary corbel to use on a fireplace can change the aesthetic of the entire room. Make sure the fireplace is in your living space, study, or bedroom has a great amount of detail by adding decorative corbels to either support the mantels or embellish the faces of the fireplace sides.

Range Hoods

Range hoods and vent hoods can be the most noticeable element in your kitchen when you add decorative corbels. Corbels can be used underneath the hood as support or attached to the face as an embellishment. This means any size of corbel can be used and choosing the right one is up to your preferences and build specifications.

Kitchen Islands

Kitchen islands are often supported by island legs or posts, but island height corbels are also available to support your countertop. If used, these will definitely be a showstopping element within your kitchen design.

Other Possible Uses

  • The underside of cabinets are often left as open space but it presents an opportunity to put a personalized touch on your kitchen or bathroom. Smaller corbels are a wonderful way to add texture and dimension to your cabinetwork.
  • Hidden storage (pull out storage - helmut image) is all the rage now that it is ideal to have clean, clutter free spaces. You can create a decorative cabinetry design with plenty of storage by hiding some of that in the empty space behind some of your embellishments. Corbels can be placed on any surface and can be used as handles for pull out storage which make them a great placeholder for your hidden storage designs.

  • Interested in adding a corner table to one of your rooms? Corbels can easily support a corner surface that can either be used as a regular shelf or as a full-size table, depending on your space availability and design preferences.

  • Create a unique desk space by using corbels instead of legs. Attach the corbels to the wall with a surface on top and you will have extra leg room as well as a seemingly “floating” desk space that will enhance the modern aesthetic of your home office.

  • Clothing storage can be enhanced by inserting a dowel rod into your corbels to create beautiful scarf hangers or other hanging storage

  • In a time when open floor plans are extremely common, some homeowners still want to have something creating a visual division between different areas within the home. Corbels can be added to the corners of open doorways or arches as a way to separate your spaces while adding a decorative touch.

There are many other creative ways corbels can be used to embellish a home project. It is completely up to your imagination. We are so excited to see what you come up with!

Choosing a Corbel Size

Smaller corbels (less than 5” tall) are often used as embellishments or in tight spaces. They can be added to flat surfaces as a way to add elegant dimension, or they can support small shelves. They can also take your furniture to the next level, such as with this kitchen island design. This uses one of our smallest available corbels, the Petite Acanthus Leaf Corbel (Part #892020) to add extra detail to the flat top blocks of the island legs.

Medium corbels are often between 5-10” tall with varying depths and widths. These are often seen providing extra support to fireplace mantels, shelving and countertop overhangs. These also work well underneath cabinetry as more of a decorative component rather than a structural one. Check out these medium-sized Beaded Traditional Brackets (Part #87221) providing stylish support for this shelf.

Your larger projects may call for larger corbels and we have an incredible selection for you to choose from. These corbels range anywhere from 10” tall to 29” tall. These can be used to support large range hoods, fireplaces, islands and much more. They can be used in lieu of desk legs and other table legs. If you use one of these large designs, your project is sure to stand out! Just look at how captivating this Alloway Contemporary Corbel (Part #8411) is under this range hood even with a matching finish!

Island Height
If you thought a 29” corbel was large, what about a 41” tall design? We offer several island height corbels, including one of the largest at 41” tall and 7” wide (the Extended Roman Island Height Corbel with Acanthus, part #1506). Some of these have modest silhouettes and can complement more contemporary spaces. Others are full of intricate detail that will turn your kitchen into a luxurious work of art. These are wonderful alternatives to island legs when additional embellishment is preferred.

Choose a Material


Metal corbels and brackets boast exceptional quality and stability. They are often used in industrial, contemporary or eclectic spaces. Some of our designs are available in various metal finishes so you can have the corbel complement the hardware and other accents in the space.

Wood species

We have over 14 types of wood species to choose from amongst our corbel selection. Choosing the right one for your project requires an understanding of the differences first. Check out our guide on How to Choose a Wood Species to learn more.

Corbel Services

Industrial hanger in back of corbel 955

Looking to customize your corbel selection according to your specific build requirements? We offer numerous services that can be added on to your purchase. See our most common service requested below:

  • Sand the corbel to 220 grit: Our products are sanded to 150 grit as a standard. There is a fee for this service and it is only eligible on items made in house.

  • No sanding: Request that your item is not sanded prior to shipment. This can be done on items manufactured in house only for no additional charge.

  • Hand select: Our team will select specific stock items based on your preferences (more or less knots, more or less color variations, etc). There is an additional fee.

  • Horizontal keyhole: Our corbels typically have vertical keyhole brackets. If you would prefer a horizontal keyhole, this can be added to your purchase for an additional fee on eligible items.

  • Industrial hanger: This hardware is a stronger option than keyhole brackets and may be necessary for larger projects. There is an installation charge for this, plus the cost of the component.

  • Metal keyhole: If you intend to flip the corbel for installation, you can request keyhole brackets be added to what was initially the top of the corbel. One or two brackets can be installed with an additional fee.

Corbel Installation

See our extensive how to guide on selecting corbels and installing them appropriately here.

Still not finding exactly what you were looking for? We offer free custom quotes and would love to work with you on a custom corbel design! Submit your quote request today!

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