East #2: Malinda's Black & White Bookcase

Name: Malinda
Location: Jersey City, NJ
Time: "...about 3 weekends due to my short attention span and poor planning." [more below]
Cost: Approx. $75 for materials

Wow. What a great example of what a lot of creativity and a little elbow grease can do. Malinda is ready for Martha Stewart! Head below the jump for all her pics, tools, and instructions and VOTING...

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BEFORE

Tell us the tools and resources you used for the project:

Mod Podge glue (A.C. Moore)
Spray acrylic (A.C. Moore)
Wrapping paper (Blue Tulip stationary store)
Gift bag (Blue Tulip)
Notecards (Blue Tulip)
Decorative paper (Kate’s Paperie)
Wallpaper (ebay)
Paint (leftover latex paint I had, semigloss white & flat black)
Paintbrushes
Utility knife
Sandpaper
Scissors
Roller (for smoothing out paper)

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MY TOOLS

Share step by step instructions for how you completed the project:
I bought this bookcase (made of particle board) about 10 years ago from the back room “as is” section of a furniture store, so it wasn’t in the greatest of shape when I started this project. It’s been in my office where it’s become a disorganized mess. I thought it would be a good piece for a make over.

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DURING

I first sanded and painted the trim and underneath the shelves in a semigloss white. I didn’t use primer because I didn’t have any on hand, so I ended up having to paint about 5 coats. Used Mod Podge decoupage medium for gluing wrapping paper to top of shelves. I had to cut the wrapping paper in several smaller pieces for each shelf because else it would tear or become very wrinkled. The glue had to dry about ½ hour and then another coat of the Mod Podge was put on top of wrapping paper. I also used spray acrylic to further protect and seal the shelves. Next I painted the sides of bookcase in flat black paint and cut notecards and gift bag for a decoupaged design on the sides. For the inside of the bookcase I used a vinyl pre-pasted wallpaper. On top of the bookcase I did decoupage again with a black textured decorative paper. I used leftover scraps of the wrapping paper, wall paper and decorative paper to decoupage a bookend.

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AFTER
How much time did you spend on your project?:

While this project could have easily been completed in one or two weekends, it took me about 3 weekends due to my short attention span and poor planning. The preparation part also took a while because I wanted to find several black and white patterns that would go together and not be too overwhelming. I did a little bit at a time, maybe working 2-4 hours at most. Poor planning included not preparing for the paint as well as I should so it took many coats and a lot of touch up.

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Maxwell left teaching in 2001 to start Apartment Therapy as a design business helping people to make their homes more beautiful, organized AND healthy. The website started up in 2004 with the help of his brother, Oliver.