Getting crafty! Giving new life to an unused bookcase

When we planned our new home, we included a little apartment above the garage. I knew that my daughter might end up living there during college, or my mother might need to move in with us at some point. I figured that until one of them needed it, the room would become my crafting space.

I had a crafting table in the space, my sewing machine, but no place to store my crafting supplies. The first thing I did was survey my supplies to see how much space I was going to need. I spread it all out on the floor. How did I get this much stuff? I was shocked at how many craft supplies a non-crafty person like myself had accumulated.

I needed serious storage. When we moved into our home I had a large bookcase that we weren’t using for anything. I decided it would make a perfect piece to store my supplies. The problem was that I didn’t like how it looked.

craft bookcase_400px

The first thing I did was to paint the cabinet using homemade chalky paint. You can find my recipe for homemade chalky paint here.

I didn’t prime the piece, but I did make sure it was clean. I usually wax the furniture at this point, but skipped that on this piece. I plan to go back later and add a coat of wax when I have a little bit of free time. (Yeah, I thought that was funny too.)

After the paint dried, I made a very simple curtain, hemming the bottom and adding a rod pocket at the top. I didn’t bother doing anything to the edges of the curtain. I thought they looked just fine. I used an inexpensive tension rod to hang the curtain.

craft curtain

Next, I started filling the cabinet with my vintage trims and laces, using old gym baskets to organize them.

basket lace

blue mason jars

The blue Mason jars were filled with vintage sewing notions I inherited from my mother-in-law. I still had lots of craft supplies left—stamps, paper, ribbon, tags, string, you name it. I went on the hunt for some matching boxes to use for the remaining supplies. I found enough at a local craft store. After organizing the supplies, I sorted them into the boxes.

Lastly, I added a little ribbon to pull back the curtain. Now there’s just one problem. I didn’t label the boxes, so I can’t remember what is in each one. I could lie to you, and tell you this type of thing never happens, but clearly it happens all too often around here. Looks like this story will have a Part 2.

craft shelves

For more simple French home decor inspiration from Anita, check out her blog Cedar Hill Farmhouse.


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