Monday, November 15, 2010

project: blue shelves

Reading about a project online does not mean that it will work in real life.
But sometimes it does.

I saw these apple crate shelves on one of the blogs that I regularly follow:

And I thought: that would be perfect for some storage in our dining room. I called 4 orchards in our city and the last one I called had 16 mismatched crates that they were going to throw away. Bryce picked them up the next day - for free! Mine didn't look as pretty as the ones above; they were all different shapes and sizes and shades. So I decided to paint, since we needed more color in our house anyways. Here's the nicest one of the bunch (which we decided to leave as-is - it holds books in our living room):

The process (which I don't have any pictures of) went something like this:
  • 2 coats of blue spraypaint on 9 crates (turned out very uneven and some weren't covered sufficiently)
  • 2 coats of oil-based primer with a paintbrush (oh my goodness . . . incredibly tedious)
  • 2 more coats of blue spraypaint (terrible cramp in my right pointer finger and painful pulled muscles in my forearm)
  • Bryce screwed them together
After hours of spraypainting - this process literally took 2 months - I am very pleased with the result.

My "blue shelf" (as I fondly call it) holds: cookbooks, mail, extra pens & notepads, a plant, speakers to plug an iTouch or laptop into, 2 baskets from Hobby Lobby and some decor items I had laying around. (FYI: the black & white designs are scrapbook paper in random black frames.) The pictures aren't the best (terrible lighting, I know) but you get the idea. My shelf is accomplishing exactly what we needed for basically just the price of spraypaint: unique storage and a pop of color in our dining room.


  1. I love those! That is adorable!!! Big fan!


  2. Cute! What a fun twist to paint them! I was planning to stop by our favorite orchard after work today and pick up 4 more crates to make bedside tables--two per side. I'm debating about whether that will be crate overload in our house... but they are tough to beat for the price! (And sadly, I still haven't managed to screw our bookshelves together yet after all this time! Woops.)

  3. Oh...I don't think that would be crate overload, Emily. Especially if they're in another part of the house. They are tough to beat for the price and so adaptable. :)