It’s been a while since I’ve done a basic furniture makeover… and I have to say, this oak bookcase makeover was downright therapeutic. With a few simple steps, I gave this outdated bookcase a new look with a black and light wood finish!
I have been looking for a large, shallow bookcase for this wall in my new home office for some time now.
I needed more storage, but I don’t have room for file cabinets or other traditional office furniture. So I kept an eye on local Facebook Marketplace and Craigslist for a real wood bookcase or cabinet that would fit the space. Fortunately, this double sided one was not only the perfect size (7 feet tall by 4 feet wide), but it was made of real oak wood and oak plywood, which both made it sturdy and gave it beautiful wood grain.
Fusion Mineral Paint in coal black + trim roller + paintbrush It has beautiful coverage and a lovely, satiny-matte finish in a variety of paint colors.
Give an old oak bookcase a fresh, new look with these simple steps.
Tip: Take extra care at edges and corners to keep your sander flat so you don’t wear through the finished layer.
A smooth, flat sander will ensure the old stain and sealer is removed evenly. Consider an air compressor, shop vac, damp rag, and tack cloth.
The back panel was previously held on with staples, but I reattached it with screws. This limits you to plywood or solid wood furniture for this kind of makeover. You could, however, take a faux wood bookcase that already had a light-wood color and paint the outside black to get a similar overall effect.
In this case, the bookcase will only be holding books, office supplies, and a few decorative items… So I opted not to seal the raw wood of the interior since that was extra work and sealing wood can often change the color and appearance.
For mid-traffic pieces (like a nightstand), see this suggestion for protecting a raw-wood look. For high-traffic pieces (like a dining table), see this method for sealing a natural-looking wood.
Once finished, I couldn’t help styling the bookshelves in my office with some of my favorite pots, baskets, and decorative vases. Next time you see this, it will likely have more baskets and bins to store my design materials (slowly getting organized over here!).