Tuesday, August 2, 2011

The Pinterest Challenge: Or I Can't Stop Staring at My Shelves

Have you ever finished a project and been so in love with how it turned out that you just couldn't stop running out into the room to look at it?

That's how I feel about my newly fabric backed built-ins which were inspired by these pins I'd saved to Pinterest, and thanks to the Pinterest Challenge: Summer Edition, cooked up by Sherry, Katie, Emily and Lana, I had just the motivation I needed to get this simple project done and crossed off my list.

(Source)                                                 (Source)

I'm on a mission to introduce more color into my living room and the natural place to start was the bookshelves, since they're a focal point of the room and the first thing I see when I walk in the front door.

I thought about painting the backs, but the shelves are fixed and I really didn't want to do all that taping and cutting in. I'm lazy that way. Then I remembered some fabric I had purchased for a different project that I changed course on. I do that a lot. Change my mind that is. And buy supplies for projects I never get around to. The fabric miraculously was the perfect aqua blue color to go with the odd greenish chairs I was making over, and the print, a small-scale Moorish tile pattern, blended with the larger scale lattice on the chairs too.

The fabric wasn't wide enough to cut lengthwise and cover both sets of shelves, so it was more economical to turn it width-wise, but I knew that would leave me a little short too. No worries, Jo-Ann still had it in stock so I grabbed another two yards (I wanted some extra for pillows too). I don't know the print name - it is part of their Keepsake Calico collection and found on the back wall along with all the other quilting fabrics and is exclusive to them.

I cut the fabric a little wider than necessary (so I thought, it's pretty close in some places) and there are little gaps behind the shelves and to the sides, so I just fed the fabric down behind and tucked in the sides using a piece of cardboard. This was so much easier than the starching I've seen people do to adhere fabric to walls like wallpaper or cutting individual panels and wrapping it around cardboard or foam core (plus it allowed me to keep the fabric in long lengths in case I ever want to do anything else with it.)

I was going to attach it with white thumbtacks, but the backing was too hard (is this were I add a "that's what she said" joke?), but I had some stick on velcro (also from the same project I'd changed my mind on) so I just stuck pieces of this in the top corners and stuck it right on the wall (side note: if you run out of mustache wax, this stuff will totally work - i.e. don't stick it on your face while you need both hands free to do something else). Because the fabric was a little short I had to pattern match and piece in a little more length. I had a little tutorial and photos planned on how to do this, but the cable for the camera that I took the pictures with is at work, so I'll do a separate post on that next week. I only lined the top five shelves - since the bottom three are pretty well covered with books, I didn't think it was necessary to do them.

So that's it, my easy, peasy project that I should have done a long time ago. So thanks ladies for the little nudge.

I'm also linking this to Thrifty Decor Chick's Before and After Party:


Anonymous said...

I was about to paint the inside of a dark bookcase but you may have inspired me to go for a fabric back instead. Thanks.

Carla said...

Go for it! It was super easy and you can always change it up later :-)

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