Here are a few tips for a cheap, fast, and easy shelf makeover. The supplies are inexpensive, under $10.00. This makeover only took a couple of hours. The skill needed is beginner level. This is an easy project.
This was a trash to treasure, treasure to trash, trash to treasure project. Does it sound like I am repeating my self? Of course, it does! Am I repeating myself? Not really.
The story goes something like this. Over a decade ago we found this shelf either at a garage sale or a thrift store. All we did was clean off the cobwebs and hang it up. No redo and no shelf makeover.
It was perfect for my teacup collection, the angel collection, and other dust collectors. Joe loved buying angels for me. It was his way of saying, “I am thinking about you.” That shelf hung safely on the dining room wall for several years UNTIL…
until Kitty No came to live with us. This adorable black long haired kitty earned her name early on. I won’t bore you with all the photos. But, like all cats, she just does what cats do. She gets into stuff. Hence the name, KITTY NO!!!
One fateful night while I was at Bible Study my treasured treasure shelf became trash again. What really happened is still a mystery. When I got home the shelf was on the floor and broken teacups and shattered angels were everywhere.
Joe was in his recliner watching TV and Kitty No was nowhere to be found. Sorry, no photos of this CATastrophe! I was speechless! No, I wasn’t. All I can say is that it was a good thing I had been at Bible Study. The questioning began. Who? What? When? Where? How? Why?
Who did this? Well, that answer was obvious.
What happened? We just had to take a guess but most likely Kitty No was after a moth.
When did this happen? Obviously, it happened while I was gone. I don’t think things would have been any different even if I had been at home.
Where? Just using our imagination, we surmised that the moth fluttered its little wings, enough to attract her attention and then flew in among the angel wings to hide. Yeah, right!
How could a few teacups and an angel collection make such a horrible mess? Everything was just like it fell. Nothing had been moved or touched. The cat was gone! Well, not completely gone because she is an indoor cat. With the teacups still in pieces on the floor, I went on a search for my beloved furry feline. Unlike our dog, Clyde she does not answer when you call her name. I couldn’t find her in any of her regular hiding places. Was she hurt? Did the shelf hit her when it fell? Did she just use one of her 9 lives?
And, WHY was all the debris still on the floor? I asked Joe why he had just left it all scattered all over the floor. He claimed that he was afraid to throw any of the trashed treasures away for fear that I might want to salvage some of the pieces. And he was right. I did.
It took a little while for me to find Kitty No. She was hiding in the laundry room between the wall and the heating unit. She wasn’t hurt but she was so traumatized. It was a few days before she was back to her curious, playful destructive self.
That was 6 years ago. For 4 year the shelf sat empty on the floor in the dining room against the wall just waiting for something. Inspiration or inclination. It just waited and waited. We moved the shelf to the garage. It stayed in the garage until I started the updates on my house. After Joe had left our earthly home, like so many who grieve, I felt the need to change a few things.
This little shelf was headed for an update. Unlike the Bathroom Renovation which took a really LONG time, this shelf makeover would be another cheap, fast, and easy project. You know that I love cheap, fast, and easy. It’s right up there with the good, bad, and ugly.
The shelf still had good bones. The size was just right. It had potential. And I had a perfect place to hang it. Right back where it was before the fall.
The fall had caused the shelf to lean a bit. It was not quite square anymore. I would have to brace it and stabilize it before I could use it for another collection display.
That scalloped trim had to go. It was really easy to remove. And there was a piece of trim on the right side but was missing on the left side. It was like that when we bought it and we just left it like that until now.
Since it had been in the garage for a while, I had to clean off the cobwebs, again. And the dust!
When you get ready to do your shelf makeover, be sure to clean it before you start. It makes the job so much easier.
I am sure that you can hardly wait to find out my…
CHEAP, FAST, AND EASY – TIPS FOR AN EASY SHELF MAKEOVER
- You will need a shelf, of course.
- Chalk Paint and a brush. I got mine at WalMart in the craft section. They have a large selection of colors. (This is NOT an affiliate link)
- Sandpaper for distressing.
- Tools if you are adding support.
I cut and painted a piece of masonite to use as a back support. This accomplished a couple of things. It stabilized the shelf. I was able to square it up since the fall had left the shelf a bit lopsided. It added extra strength for a heavier “collection”. My collection of white ceramic pitcher might just be the next thing on the shelf. We’ll see.
I had masonite on hand. If you are not handy, you can get your lumber yard to cut it to fit your shelf.
Just another tip on the back piece. Depending on the size of the shelf, you could also purchase a piece of mat board from Hobby Lobby. Tacked in place, it would provide some support wouldn’t add much weight to the shelf.
The shelf and the back piece both got 2 coats of Waverly Chalk Paint. Be sure and follow the instructions. Sometimes I just want to jump right in like I know what I am doing. It’s best to follow the instructions. “Plaster” was the color I selected because it was not bright white and not cream colored.
If you plan to distress your shelf, this is the time to do that. Make sure the paint is completely dry. Then, select a grade of sandpaper for the effect you are after. A heavier grit will achieve a heavier distressed look. I chose a medium grit for just a touch of distress.
Since I knew this little shelf would be hanging on the wall and not subject to everyday wear and tear, I decided not to wax it.
Put it together. I nailed the back in place, making sure everything was square. Because this shelf is going to hold more than delicate teacups and glass angels I decided it needed weight appropriate hangers on the back.
It also needed anchors in the wall that would support the weight of the shelf and the next collection.
And, I sure hope that it will NOT ever again need to support the weight of one big black Kitty No.
I am so glad you stopped by for a minute or two. I hope you are inspired to work on your own shelf makeover. Don’t you just love seeing a transformation? I love seeing past what seems like the obvious and seeing the potential. Let me leave you with this scripture. “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.” 2 Corinthians 5:17
Be sure to come back and see which one of my collections made this shelf their new home.
’til next time,