Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Book Space

I live in a small apartment.  I mean, my apartment can fit inside of the classroom, in which I teach.  No matter the size, I enjoy it and I find it cozy.  One thing that is tough about an intimate living area, is the lack of space... for things, like books!  I love to read.  I have hundreds of books, though, I am working on breaking my attachment to books I didn't particularly care for.  But, that is neither here nor there.

On Sunday, I woke up and decided that that was the day to do some apartment makeover activities.  It was the second day of Christmas break, after all.  I only have three weeks to get as much stuff as possible done.

So, I reattached the thing on the bottom of the front door, that had been partially ripped off and consequently was beginning to trap me inside.  I had to stick the tip of my foot between the door and the screen and kick the door back... every morning, in the dark, in order to get out of my house.  Score! One thing fixed!

I purchased some nice frames and a painting at Kohl's, at majorly discounted prices, for my bathroom.  And I hung them up too!  Score!  Two things!  They really spruce up my bathroom.

I hung a frame and some 'Z's above my bed.  Let's face it, when I moved into this place a year and 8 months ago, I only focused on the living room and kitchen area, as these are the only places that people would be seeing, when visiting.  Score, three things!  I was on a roll!

I plan on adding wings to the frame and spray painting the 'Z's gold.  

Now, the most amazing thing that I did on Sunday, was purchasing 4 wooden crates from Michael's, some stain and poly coating, and a brush.  I was in desperate need of some bookshelves or something of that sort to get some newly acquired books off of my living room floor.  When I was at Michael's and I saw these crates, I was struck with an idea.  I ran with it and I am extremely happy with the results.  At first, I wanted to hang them all in my room, but they stick so far out, that I was afraid I would smack my head on them.

I ended up putting two in my living room, on top of my other bookcase.  I am still trying to figure out where exactly I will place the other two.  If I do choose to hang them in my room, I think I am going to need some brackets, to help support the weight of the books, so that the crate doesn't rip out of the wall.

I am very happy with the results and I think they look as if they have been in my living room all along.

Wooden crates from Michael's, $9.99 (4 total)

I suggest getting the smaller cans of stain and poly, because I could probably make 100 more of these crates and I would still have enough stain and poly to make at least 20 more!  I got a brush (Linzer Stain and Poly) that is specifically for stain and poly.  It is amazing!

What a difference, huh?

I had never stained before, my first two crates look great, because I took my time.  The last two have a few drips here and there, but I think it adds to their charm.  I chose a matte poly, in order to keep the 'rustic' look.  I wasn't looking for a high shine manufactured look.

Here they are at home and filled with books.  I really think they look great and they were so simple!

I mean, even the dinosaur is happy to have them near!

The best thing is that they got my extra books off of the ground and made room for more, that will undoubtedly come in the near future.

If you are wanting to do this project, may I suggest that you give yourself plenty of time? Before you put the poly coating on, your stain has to sit for an hour.  Also, please have good air flow!  My apartment was not ideal for this and I was getting some serious black lung and holes in the brain.  However, I used what brain cells I had left and placed my fan in the kitchen, facing an open window and all was well.

Choose a stain that works well with your existing decor and have fun!

A simple project that delivers great results.

Merry Christmas!

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