Bookshelf Makeover

When I was younger, my parents were nice enough to let me rearrange my furniture and paint my room a different color every summer. I truly commend them on having such faith in me and some of my closest friends to get the job done without one of us falling off a ladder or spilling the galloon of paint on the white carpet. BUT ALAS, we had good fortune and nothing too damaging ever happened. A few dribbles on the carpet and strategically painted streaks in our hair never hurt anyone, right? 


You could say this is where my love of painting originated. My 12 year old self looked forward to it every year. I left on a high note with a shade of lavender that really showed my maturity over the original Tiffany blue motif I had going on. 

Fast forward to present day and my apartment life which severely limits my love of painting. I really can’t justify painting the entire place only to change it back to white before we depart from our cozy little apartment in the future. When we first moved in, I loved our built in bookshelf in our bedroom and had plans on painting it before it got cluttered. Then life got hectic, we started storing things on the shelves and the project never happened!

Below is the a before picture of the “junked up” bookshelves before the redo:

Yes, that is our printer taking up half a shelf. And yes, that is a biography of Hitler that I have been called out on for owning way too many times. I was a history major, people. Leave it alone 🙂

Below are the steps I took to completely redecorate this area with so much potential! 

Step One: Remove clutter and 3M Tape before painting. The tape is something I used to skip because I am more of an instant gratification type personality and it’s so tedious taping everything but TRUST me, you cannot skip this step. 

Step Two: Color code the books that you want to display on the shelves. We removed some of the books and also limited the amount we have so that it doesn’t appear cluttered. 


 Step Three: Purchase your chachkies. This was my favorite step because it allowed me to go on a Homegoods shopping spree. I actually felt bad for the person checking me out at the register because it was a good amount of “stuff”. They just laughed it off. 


Advice here: pick different elements to each of the pieces. I wanted one “statement” piece with a lot of color which you will see with the yellow chest and turquoise quote on top of it. 

Step Four: Paint! I purchased my paint at Target and went with a Chalky Finish Paint. I chose a dark color so the contrast would be noticeable and it draws your eyes to the shelves. 


Step Five: Wait for paint to dry and then strategically place your books and decor. I actually drew out on a piece of paper where I wanted everything to go and adjusted accordingly once it was placed on the shelves.




The wine bottle seen here is the bottle of wine my husband and I drank the day he proposed to me at Veritas Winery. I paired this with the drinking cups my brother brought back for me when he was stationed in Okinawa. I love miniature anything 🙂 


I purchased the picture of our little family from an Etsy Shop for our 1 Year Anniversary. I still need to find a frame for it but I’m kinda digging it frameless. 

Tips: Try to alternate the direction in which the books are stacked to be more appealing to the eye. 

Space out your color and the type of decor you are using. For example, don’t place a ceramic piece of decor on the same shelf as another ceramic piece of decor. 

Step Six: Enjoy your remodeled bookshelves! 


The sand bottle on the bottom shelf is filled with sand from our Honeymoon. As you can see, I used some old pieces and purchased some new ones so spruce it up a bit. Have fun with it and make it your own!

Happy decorating everyone!

What are some of your favorite pieces of decor? Feel free to share in the comments!


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