Today, Jan from Impressions by Jani is here, showing a darling transformation of an old bookcase, into the perfect nightstand for her daughters’ room. And that pop of blue paint is amazing!
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Hi Make It and Love It readers! It’s great to be back again sharing another idea for updating your child’s room. Thank you for the warm welcome on my Blanket Storage Display Ladder — I hope some of you have tried your version of that simple project.
Today I’ve got a little bookcase/nightstand update for you that hopefully will inspire you to look at the old, tired pieces of furniture in your home in a new way.
As you can probably tell from the Blanket Ladder post (and lots more over on my blog), I’m always tinkering in my girls’ rooms to make them a little more functional and pretty at the same time. My two middle daughters share a queen bed, which works well for them and provides a great spot for guests when they come stay with us. When we switched out their old bunkbed for the queen, however, we were at a loss for night stands. A bookcase we’ve had for years fit on one side for my older daughter, but the other side of the bed was empty for a while as I looked around.
Finally, I noticed a friend selling this choice piece on Facebook for 15 bucks and I snagged it quick!
It was short and squatty and in need of a little love, but I just plopped it in the room for a while as I waited for decorating inspiration to strike. I’m not really a mood board/plan-out-the-details-from-the-start kind of decorator, since my decor budget is always way, way smaller than my ideas. Instead, I tend to develop an idea or feeling I want in a room, then keep my eyes peeled for bargain finds and pieces I can make over to fit into the space.
This bookcase is a perfect example of this. It was exactly the right width for the area between the bed and the wall, it was cheap, and it had potential. The downside was that it was really too short to be an effective nightstand–it was barely flush with the top of the mattress. With the tall bookcase on the other side (that I have yet to make over), the room looked slightly crooked. Here’s a shot of the whole bed wall now–see how tall the other bookcase is?
The two bookcases are still not exactly the same height, but by adding legs to the smaller one and a bit of trim around the bottom edges (and eventually painting both the same color), they will become a much more unified pair.
The top of the nightstand provides a nice spot for my daughter’s imaginative play. (That little house is another Target find that has been everything from Doc McStuffin’s clinic to Sophia’s castle and everything in between.)
And by adding a bit of white textured paper to the back of each shelf, there’s such a nice pop of lightness to the back of the bookcase. I was a bit concerned that the pattern would be too busy with all the books and other items that I needed to actually store in the space, but it is muted enough that it works nicely.
Also, I couldn’t resist adding a few styling touches to the shelves, as well, of course! The faux coral ties in beautifully with the sea shell backing paper, and the oversize jack fits perfectly in a child’s room. The linen-covered bin (Threshold at Targets) holds more of those flimsy, soft cover books that we seem to have a billion of but never stay upright on a bookshelf. This way the girls can stash those book right back in the bin when they clean their room instead of trying to nicely shelve them upright.
We’ve got two chapter book readers and one who is just on the cusp of learning to read, so the more space I have for their books, the better! I just love having the books organized by color, and my seven year old was so impressed by that! “I’m going to keep the books like this forever, mommy!” Now, we all know that’s not going to happen, but she really has tried and it’s worked better than any other book storing attempt we’ve made over the years.
Want to know how I turned the old bookcase into a nightstand?