D.I.Y. Painted Laminate Book Shelf


       When Matt and I moved in together he brought all of his college furniture. This bookcase was bought at a garage sale and instead of getting rid of it and buying another book shelf, I decided to try and revamp it for the nursery.

- Shelf
- Kilz Oil Based Primer (or Zinsser Oil Based Primer-more odor, or Water-based Primer- needs more drying time and a sanding)
- Paint colors of your choice
- Clear Polyurethane 
- 220 Grit Sand Paper
- Paint brush and/or foam roller
- Mineral Spirits to clean supplies
- Mask to protect from fumes
- Plastic to protect surrounding areas

Step 1:
        First, I filled in any scratches or dents with a putty and sanded them until even with the laminate. Since I am painting it the difference in material will not show. I then cleaned the shelf with a damp cloth. I also took out any shelves that could be removed and worked on those separately.

Step 2:
        Next, I used a small foam roller to roll on the Kilz Oil Based Primer to really create a binding agent for the paint to stick to. I used a cheap brush just to get the paint in the cracks. Zinsser Oil Based Primer works well too, but has a strong odor...so since there is a pregnant woman in the house, we decided on the odorless Kilz {still has a small odor so use in a well-ventilated area}. Check the back of can for length of time to wait in between coats.

       If you use water-based you MUST sand before (not the case with the oil-based), and wait at least 7 hours for the primer to cure. I believe the cure time for the oil-based is only 2 hours, but I usually wait a little longer to be sure. After I primed, I lightly sanded with a 220 grit (between coats) sandpaper to take off any drips or brush strokes.

* Again, you MUST wait the required amount of time for any primer or paint{on back of can}to cure in between coats or the finished piece will be sticky and might even peel...and it will never really go away.

Step 3:
       Next choose your paint color for the shelf; I used a Custom White Valspar Semi-Gloss and Benjamin Moore's "Cork" that I had left over from another project. I used a better quality brush to paint two coats of this paint {3 for the white}.

Step 4:
        If painting two colors, paint the first color only. After the white paint cured, I taped off the outlines and painted the yellow.  I also peeled off the tape before the paint completely dried...about 10 minutes after painting. The reason is because I have found some latex paints like to peel once dry when you try to peel off the tape.

Step 5:
        Since the shelf is going in a boy's room and will going through a lot of wear and tear; I wanted to make it more durable. I used a clear Polyurethane {Satin or Semi-Gloss finish depending on the shine you want} to seal the painted shelf.

There you have it, the updated shelf that can be reused/repainted as many times as I want!