Book Shelf Up-Cycle


book shelf 1

This bookshelf was one of my favorite and quickest up-cycles to date! I was so excited to start working on it that I almost completely forgot to take the “before” picture. I bought this sad little bookshelf from an online yard sale. It was in terrible condition and desperately needed some life breathed back into it. Something about it was crying to be bright and boisterous. So I went with a green that made me feel happy.

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • sander
  • paint
  • fabric of your choice, or a second paint color
  • Mod Podge
  • furniture wax

First, sand down the wood completely. It needs to be a smooth surface. If there are multiple layers of paint already on there, try to get as much off as you can.

Second, wipe down the surface so that all dirt (which there was a TON of), dust, or grime is removed.

Third, you’re ready to paint! I did three coats because I loved this color so much. Each time it got a new coat, the color became more vibrant. Don’t be shy with paint coats!

After I painted the entire piece and I let it dry for 24 hours, I measured the areas I wanted the fabric to fill. It’s better to have a little extra than to cut your fabric too short and have gaps to work around. Just like the coffee table up-cycle, the Mod Podge technique is the same.

Put down a thick layer of Mod Podge over the area the fabric will be placed. You’ll need to work quickly, this dries fast! Place the fabric over the layer of Mod Podge. Be sure to pull the fabric tight and push out any wrinkles. Once you’re satisfied with the way its positioned, add two more layers of Mod Podge on top of the fabric to seal it in. If the fabric hangs over anywhere, a box cutter can be used to cut away the excess.

I repeated this process 3 times to give the shelf a fun background.

When that’s completely dry, take an old rag (that will not fray) and go over the entire wood area with the finishing wax.

Here was my finished product:




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