Restyled: Kid’s Media Shelf


Finishing A’s bedroom was first on our to-do list when we moved into the new house.  We thought it would be fun to let her choose her own paint and accent colors – risky business when dealing with a 6 year old, we know!  No surprise to us, she settled on bright pink and purple paint for the walls with accents of apple green.  The combination suits her princess-loving personality perfectly, and she is so proud to have put her own stamp on the new space.


After painting the walls, we set up A’s bed {an adorable headboard/footboard set we scored for under $50 at a local resale shop and refinished a glossy white} and put an armchair in the corner for her to sit and read.  Since remaining floor space was at a premium, we wanted to find another furniture piece that could provide additional storage and multitask as a TV stand, bookshelf, and side table.


On a whim, we grabbed an old, particle board/veneer {i.e. cheap} bookshelf that was once used in my closet to store accessories, and we hatched a plan to give it a quick and inexpensive facelift.


To start, we sanded the entire shelf using a medium grit sandpaper, just enough to dull the sheen and lightly rough up the surface.  After giving the shelf a good cleaning, we then primed it using Behr Premium Plus Interior Latex Primer {I really like the coverage and consistency of this one, but you can use any good quality primer such as Kilz Odorless Interior Primer}.  Once primed, we painted the shelf with three coats of HGTV Home by Sherwin Williams Interior Semi-gloss Latex Paint in Snowbound, letting it dry thoroughly between coats to ensure an even, opaque finish.  To protect the paint and give it added durability, we then sealed it using Rust-oleum Painter’s Touch Ultra Cover 2x Clear protective spray finish.


For a fun touch, we decided to line the interior back of the shelf with a green and white floral contact paper we found at Walmart for around $5.  To start, I measured the shelf opening and cut a length of paper slightly larger than what I needed to allow for some wiggle room.  A second piece of paper was needed to completely cover the back, so I made sure to line up the floral pattern when cutting the second piece, so the seam would not be visible.  I then removed the backing from the contact paper and carefully adhered each piece to the back of the shelf, working outward from the middle and smoothing any wrinkles or air bubbles as I went.  For the final step, I used a straight edge and utility knife to trim the excess paper from the inside corners of the shelf.


I’m pretty pleased with how the shelf turned out, considering we were able to do the entire project with $5 worth of contact paper and supplies we had on hand!  I love giving new life to old and underappreciated objects, and this project is a great example of what can be done with a small amount of time and an even smaller budget.

Thanks for taking a peek at the new {old} media shelf!  Feel free to share your favorite upcycling tips in the comments or to suggest another furniture update you’d like to see.  We have plenty of projects in the works, but I’m always looking for the next one!

Happy crafting!