I have another reclaimed wood DIY project for you today. I got a truck load (it probably should have been two truckloads, but we squeezed it into one) of 4×8 plywood sheets, 2×6 and 2×8 boards from a craigslist ad. It was salvaged from a home that these folks tore down and they were happy to have it hauled off and out of their yard. This project is made mainly from that wood. The panels that back the bookshelf were milled by a friend of mine who passed them along to me, where they have patiently waited for me to put them to use. I came up with this cool bookshelf that i finished with homemade chalkboard paint and sand distressed. CeCe caldwell Clear Wax then Aging Wax sealed the deal and added just the amount of antiquing to suit my vision. You can finish this project in a day if you are committed, over a weekend if you have some distractions.
This fine Kentwood Bookshelf by Shanty2Chic that I spied at AnaWhite.com was my inspiration. I had just taken a woodworking DIY class by Whitney and Ashley of Shanty2Chic at Haven Conference, and I came home on fire to build. These girls are amazing! They shared their journey coming from zero knowledge of building or power tools, to being able to build some amazing furniture for their homes. I have been building since April, and before I started, I was totally intimidated. I still am by lots of projects, but I am so glad that I broke into the power tool world. It is way easier than I thought, and not much is more gratifying than building custom pieces, from reclaimed wood no less. Go check out Shanty2Chic, walk through some of their detailed tutorials and you can build awesome stuff too! You really can.
One thing they taught me at Haven was to measure as I go instead of cutting all of my pieces called for in the plan. I hadn’t been doing that, and my pieces would be off almost every time. Wood is going to curve and bow and do funky things, especially reclaimed lumber and shipping pallets. I am so glad they emphasized measuring and cutting based on reality and not on the perfect plan. I decided to scrap the plan entirely for this shelf, and just go with my own dimensions based on what pieces I had on hand, and the measurements as I built.
I made my own 2×2 pieces by ripping the 2×6 boards from the house demolition that I scored. This is what I used to frame the side planks, which I cut 11.5 x60 inches from the 4×8 sheets of 5/8 inch plywood also from the house demo. Shanty2Chic used 1×12 boards for the side panels. I went with plywood since I had it on hand, and I knew I was going to paint the final piece.
You can see the Kreg pocket holes in the plywood side planks that I drilled to attach 2×2 framing. Attach shelves and top.
I used 3 pieces of the wood my friend milled for the backing. They were different thicknesses, but since that would only be visible from the back, I didn’t much care. I just measured and cut to length the center piece, and ripped what I needed off the 2 side pieces so that they didn’t stick out over the edge. I counter sank 2 inch wood screws to attach the back panels.
I love the larger panels for the backing, and that I didn’t have to buy any wood for this piece! Fill Kreg holes with wood putty, liquid nail or caulking. It doesn’t need to be something that takes stain if you are painting the piece anyway.
I sanded the unfinished bookshelf with medium grit paper and painted a base coat of CeCe Caldwell Paint in Vintage White (You can see my other CeCe Caldwell Chalk and Clay Paint projects by clicking the thumbnails below). After that was dry (about 1 hour indoors) I made a gray DIY Chalk finish Paint using the Make Your Own ChalkBoard Paint Recipe I showed you in an earlier post.
For a little more aging, I added a coat of CeCe Caldwell Clear wax, then Aging Wax. I buffed with a soft cloth an hour later and that was that.
LOVE! Thank you Whitney and Ashley. Can’t wait to see you again!!