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20 Upcycled Bookshelf Tutorials

20 Upcycled Bookshelf Tutorials

Upcycled Bookshelf Tutorials

Need a new bookshelf? IKEA is NOT the answer.

Turns out that a *new* bookshelf probably isn’t the answer, either, not when there are so many wonderful things to upcycle into bookshelves, and so many ways to decorate thrifted or freshly built bookshelves with upcycled components.

If you’re thinking about going bookshelf shopping, first put down your wallet and check out these ideas–you’re probably going to find the bones of your brand-new bookshelf project waiting right here:

1) Pallet bookshelves. Use wood pallets to make face-out bookshelves–just seal these REALLY well, OK? Sometimes wood pallets can be processed with nasty chemicals, and you don’t want that in your house.

2) Cardboard into bookshelves. Upcycle cardboard from the recycling bin into a beautiful bookshelf.

3) Decoupaged bookshelves. Give some personality to bland, mass market-looking bookshelves by decoupaging it with vintage papers.

4) Dresser into bookshelves. Turn a dresser into a bookshelf, and check out the super-clever wood glue stencil technique also in this tutorial.

5) Bi-fold door bookshelves. Bi-fold doors can be sooo tacky, so it’s better to turn them all into bookshelves.

6) Box frame into bookshelves. Your old bed wants to be a bookshelf.

7) Panel door bookshelves. Cutting a door in half makes two sides of VERY sturdy bookshelves.

8) Antique crates bookshelves. Boxes or crates are easy to stack into a bookshelf, and when you add casters, you can even make them mobile! But of course, even one crate makes a lovely bookshelf.

9) Suitcase corner bookshelves. An opened suitcase or trunk fits perfectly into a corner; add shelves to make it a corner bookshelf.

10) Old bookshelves into new bookshelves. Got the bones of an old bookshelf that looks ready for the landfill? Fix it up so that it looks new again!

11) Drawer bookshelves. Drawers stacked just right make good-looking bookshelves with clever shelves.

12) Book shelves. Old books become the base for floating bookshelves or hanging bookshelves.

13) Clock bookshelves. Turn a grandfather clock into a bookshelf.

14) Bricks bookshelves. Leftover bricks? That’s a bookshelf!

15) Picture frames into bookshelves. Use antique picture frames to front wall-mounted bookshelves.

16) Bed springs bookshelves. Wall-mounted bed springs can hold books!

17) Shutters into bookshelves. Use old shutters for the back and sides of a bookshelf.

18) Plant stand bookshelves. A fresh coat of paint turns a plant stand into a light and useful bookshelf.

19) Ladder bookshelves. Upcycle a wooden ladder into a wall-mounted bookshelf.

20) Repainted laminate bookshelves. Laminate furniture is sooo ugly, but it’s cheap and readily available at every thrift shop. Here’s how to paint it to make it cute.

Know of any other excellent upcycled bookshelf tutorials? Link to them in the comments below.

Read more: Home, Green Home Decor, Reduce, Recycle & Reuse, , , ,

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We know that buying handmade or making things ourselves is more eco-friendly than shopping at big box stores, but how can we make sure that the crafts we’re making are as green as possible? That’s what Crafting a Green World is all about! From sustainable fabrics and ideas for creative reuse to eco-friendly art supplies and tutorials, we want to help you make your crafty life greener. We feature everything from tutorials and supplies to green crafters and book reviews. Crafting a Green World is your number one resource for organic, natural, and recycled crafty projects, products, media, and businesses. You can find us on Twitter, Facebook, and Pinterest.


+ add your own
2:24PM PDT on Jun 30, 2014

Cement blocks and boards work well. No cement block, bricks can be substituted.

1:53PM PDT on Jun 19, 2014

Some of these tutorials must have had me in mind cuz I have wanted to redo some things and with the info I just got I can jump on a couple of them. Thank you, I appreciate articles like this, please keep up the good work. Looking forward to more.

2:57PM PDT on May 4, 2014

Great ideas! Thank you! Shared!

12:40AM PDT on Apr 28, 2014

Thanks for ideas, some are a bit crazy for my taste, but some are very usable!

7:31PM PDT on Apr 25, 2014


2:31AM PDT on Apr 17, 2014


8:32AM PDT on Apr 13, 2014

I've knocked apart old laminate furniture to make shelves with concrete blocks and bricks. Not pretty, but fine for basement and garage storage.

4:35AM PDT on Apr 13, 2014

Thank you for the article

2:40AM PDT on Apr 13, 2014


7:34PM PDT on Apr 12, 2014

thank you

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

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