Last week the finished bookcases for my youngest daughter's room were revealed.
They came out better than I expected.
The bookcases didn't always look like this...
This is what they looked like when we bought them from someone who listed them on Craigslist.
We paid $150 for the pair. Not a bargain, but the doors were solid 5 piece raised panel with applied molding and mitred corners. We don't have the ability to make something so fabulous and to have them made would cost at least $150... or at least that's how I justified spending $150 on two really ugly bookcases.
First off, the bookcases were not as tall as I wanted them to be. I wanted them to be taller than the windows and they needed to be tall enough so that the curtain rods could be installed between them. It would have looked too awkward to add all of the height to the top, so I had Mr. Fanatic build up the bottom of the box. It was going to be covered anyway with furniture base. Here's the bottom before:
The old base molding was removed...
... and an inch and a half was added with a couple of pieces of plywood.
He did the same with the top...
The crown molding was removed
... and the box was built up. I wanted a bead so that the seam between the bookcase and the added height on top wasn't so obvious.
Then a box was added on top of the bead.
Here's looking into the box on the top of the bookcases. Later, Mr. F added a shelf closer to the top so that the lights would sit closer to the top of the crown molding. Crown molding was also added to the top of the box.
After the bookcases were constructed, it was time to prime. It's times like this when I'm so glad we have a basement!
Here's a good look at the top of the bookcase...
After priming, came the paint. We used Valspar Semi-gloss in Brilliant White. The brass hardware was spray painted silver.
If you notice, the crown molding was added so that the bookcases can be used either together or separately against a left and right wall.
At this point, the bookcases looked pretty good, but I thought that they would look even better with the backs painted a contrasting color. I thought blue would look great, but my daughter picked out a really bright color that I thought might be too "loud", as my mom used to say...
Boy, was I wrong!
After the bookcases were finished, there was still wiring to do. Mr. F had to go into the attic during a couple of really hot days. He was able to bring the cable wire and install a new outlet up through a space between the floors from the attic.
He's so clever.
He's so clever.
In order to give the bookcases a built in look, he cut out the baseboards so that the bookcases could fit up against the wall.
I'm going to share a little secret with you... The window is not centered on the wall and the right side is 4" wider. You can't tell because the curtains cover the space. Gotta love that!
|On the right side of the window|
there's a four inch gap
|On the left side of the window the bookcase|
is right up against the casing
So, there you have it:
That's how we transformed two ugly bookcases into a fabulous focal point!
P.S. The total cost for these bookcases was around $300. We paid $150 for the bookcases and spent about another $150 on paint, wood, molding, wiring, and lighting.