How we saved these old office shelves from the landfill and built THIS

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The living room did not really feel like it was “us” and as it is probably the room we spent most of our time in, we wanted it to look and feel amazing.. I loved our big grey sofa, pale pink walls, with the fireplace finished and our log holder updated, I was really happy with one side of it.. The other side, not so much.

We bought this sideboard a few years back and I really loved it but somehow it did not feel like it suited the room.

I did try and paint it and change a few things but it still did not work. We also needed some more storage and who doesn’t love a good shelfie? I absolutely love large bookcases and built ins! Having spent ages on Instagram and Pinterest I thought it would be a good idea to build bookcases around the existing TV which is mounted on the wall. There are so many amazing hacks online on how ton achieve this. Have you seen Malcolm’s beautiful Ikea Billy hack?

Image Credit – Malcolm at Design 69

Initially we thought we had two options: 1 to build the shelves from scratch using MDF boards, and 2 use pre-built shelving like Malcolm did in his post. Sadly IKEA does not deliver to the Isle of Man so we were thinking on how to get the shelves delivered to us, which would incur extra cost.

We kind of left that idea for a while and somehow things just fell into place after a while! I knew there was an office that was closing down and they were getting rid of all the furniture in the building. I was not interested in the filing cabinets but what I was interested in were the bare MDF shelves they had! Well, if you don’t ask you don’t get, so I did ask!! And guess what?? I got a large selection of the shelves provided I would remove them and take them away…Immediately I called Shaun to organise the biggest van he could find!!

I was so happy I only measured them roughly and thought we will make it work! Shaun and I crammed as many as we could in his van and even took some apart to fit a few extras in just in case. We thought we will worry about the sizes later..

Turned out there were two different sizes.. It is never straight forward.. I didn’t really mind as it meant we had quite a few to play with and probably would not need them all for the living room. This meant I could have some extra for my craft room!

We started by playing around with the shelves and stacking them in situ. Having settled on the layout, we fixed them together.

As these shelves were built for large office files, we decided to add a few shelves to make it look more appealing and also to allow us to store more things on them. We also built the shelving for the sky box and added a few little shelves around.

We fixed them all in place using screws. The shelves were attached to the wall using brackets.

To create some storage and to hide the leads and sockets we knew we needed some doors for the bottom shelves. Shaun and I knew we were over our heads with this (having tried for about an hour and failed), we called in our friend Mikey who is a joiner. He built the doors and added hinges to finish off the shelves!

They were then ready to be painted!! I used Zinsser Primer for the shelves as my first coat and then Farrow & Ball Modern Eggshell in “Railings**”. I matched the walls behind and painted the walls using Modern Emulsion.[**the colour looks slightly more blue in the light, it is a dark grey colour which was a blue undertone -we have used this colour in our dining room, kitchen and hallway].

To finish off the shelves I added some gorgeous gold handles!

Good for the planett and good for the purse!

PS the long sideboard that we previously had I put on “freecycle” Facebook page in the Isle of Man and a lovely lady came to collect it.. so another piece of furniture is used and not going in the landfill!!

What do you think??

4 thoughts on “How we saved these old office shelves from the landfill and built THIS

  1. You really did a lovely job, with the shelving. Good work for repurposing and saving it from landfill.

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