They were stained dark on one side and natural on the other.
I removed the hinges and primed them and then they sat and waited… and waited… and waited… while I looked for a couple of dressers. Here they are last Christmas being used as card holders.
Because I have a thing about symmetricality (is that even a word) I originally wanted the dressers to be the same height so I could build the bifold door shelves on top, but after looking for months I realized that was probably a pipe dream, or should I say a dresser dream, because one dresser had to be narrower than the other.
So when I found this vintage dresser set at the ReStore for $35 I grabbed them.
I decided to screw the doors onto the sides of the dressers. Why not?
It was quite easy to do.
I used the bottom side rail of the dressers as my guide so I didn’t have to trust my levelling eye, which sometimes can’t be trusted.
Even though one dresser is narrower and taller than the other this setup satisfies my slightly unbalanced need for balance.
Then onto the shelves. All the wood used was salvaged from the dump (with permission of course).
These pieces had splinter danger written all over them so I went at them with a sanding block, but still leaving them with a rustic look.
One of these days I’ll get myself a smaller version of our circular saw because the big ancient beast that we have is just a whole lotta terrifying. It’s actually the awful noise it makes that I find quite disturbing to my peace, so I refuse to use it.
But I do wield a mean hand saw, and adorned with my pink work boots and gloves I happily and peacefully sawed my wood pieces to size.
I’m never opposed to a little manual labour. My mother always says that it’s good for the soul. I have to say that it’s not too bad for my 50ish upper arms either. lol.
Before adding the shelves I had to make sure that everything was level. In this house that is no easy feat. It was built in 1890 and a level floor or a square wall doesn’t exist. So a little propping up of the feet was required.
Then I measured up from the dresser tops and marked where I wanted the bottom of my 1x1s to go, and I screwed them in.
I screwed in the shelves using two drills.
One for the holes,
and the second for the screws.
Pre-drilling the holes keeps the wood from splitting, and using two drills helps maintain my sanity.
It helps, but it’s no guarantee. lol.
So here are my bookcases all levelled, and doored, and shelved… oh my… and waiting for some white paint love along with the cedar chest that’s been primed and waiting for over 3 years now.
Well I found it in this Behr white paint/primer combo at the ReStore. A gallon of paint is only $10, but paint and primer combos are $15. Still a really good deal.
Whenever I see a colour I like I grab it, and I’ll often grab white because I can use it to mix my own colours. I think I could probably stock my own little paint aisle.
A little white paint love goes a really long way… even on this rustic salvaged wood.
To back the shelves I pulled this $1 thrifted shower curtain from my fabric stash. I’ve been saving it for the perfect project, and this is it.
I think it just adds a little extra something and a little touch of pink never hurt anybody, especially not me.
I simply attached the fabric pieces to the back with flat tacks. That way if I ever need a change it’s easy to do.
If I ever change my mind? lol. It’s probably more like when.
I finished the bookcases off by adding some simple corner details that I salvaged from a broken Victorian screen door from the dump, and some window case molding from my stash to the top.
If you’re interested in more details about how to cut moldings you can check out my DIY Built In Bookcase project that I built in my craft room.
I added a vinyl liner that I found at the dollar store, and prettied up the shelves with some lace from my stash. I just used double sided tape to attach the lace to the liner.
Then I played with a few of my favourite things.
The narrower bookcase holds some of my antique and vintage books, my book angel, a few other favourite items, and the typewriter that I bought for myself when I was twelve with money I earned from delivering Eatons and Simpsons catalogues and flyers to every house on a couple of streets in my neighbourhood.
Does anyone remember those big heavy catalogues? It’s hard for me to imagine that as a girl I actually lugged them around in a wagon that my dad adapted to hold them. I’m not sure I’d even do that now. lol.
We finally replaced the ancient TV that we had in here. It worked fine, but it took up way too much space. The larger shelf houses the new 32″ TV with built in DVD, which I absolutely love.
I recently bought the whole Mary Tyler Moore Show series and am now into Season 4. I’m thoroughly enjoying it. It’s one of my all-time favourite shows. I watch one Mary most weeknights between 10 and 11 while I do my yoga.
I love to have books everywhere so this bookcase holds some of my favourites.
I had to add my funky vintage peacock clock, which does work but the tick it too loud for me so I’m not actually using it, and a photo of John and myself in front of the Eiffel Tower.
And this heavy glass ball with hand painted cats that my brother brought back for me from China where he worked for a few years eons ago.
The cats are painted on the inside of the glass ball with little brushes that go through a hole in the bottom. It’s quite amazing.
I slanted an old ornate frame behind just for fun.
I was getting rather tired of living with this sad looking end of the room.
It looks so much much happier now, and I feel so much happier now that it’s finally done.
Everything got two coats of the white paint/primer combo including the cedar chest, which makes a perfect little window seat. You can just see my pink yoga mat peeking out from beside the TV bookcase. It fits in there perfectly, and I plan to put a hook in there to hang it.
I wanted to make this project as thriftily as I could so I think $40 for the dressers, the shelf liner, and the shower curtain, plus a loonie or two for the paint and primer, is pretty good… and I have one set of bifold doors for another project.
I still need to figure out what I’m doing about drawer knobs. The pink ones that came on the dressers were a cheap plastic and had to go. The drawer front bottoms are all lipped and very easy to open and close without knobs so I’m going to wait until I find something I love. I have a few repurposing ideas, but I have to find the items I need.
UPDATE: Check out my decoupaged drawer knobs project here.
Even though I really needed the break it feels so good to be back. I really missed everyone. I was gone longer than I planned because Spring came and with it came all the work in the gardens. The weather has been quite lovely though so we’ve been enjoying it.I hope Spring has been treating you well.
Thanks so much for reading and until next time…