Repurposed Curbside Bookcase Into Farmhouse Shelf – Painted White

This post may contain affiliate links (disclosure here).

Hello, all my fellow Junkers!  I wanted to share my curbside bookcase find.  Yep, someone actually was tossing it!  Can you believe it? Here is the repurposed curbside bookcase makeover.

Repurposed Curbside Bookcase
Bookcase Found on Curbside

Curbside Bookcase Makeover

As you can see, it was blah.  A big brown, well square.  I turned it upside down and sideways trying to figure out what I could create.  After a lot of pondering, I decided I would repurpose it into a farmhouse shelf. 

I started the project by removing the back.  It was yucky, and I knew it needed replacing.  I also removed the shelf and the fasteners that hold the shelf in place.

Back of Bookcase
Back of Bookcase

I then gave the entire piece and the shelf a light sanding by hand with 220 grit sandpaper to scruff up the surface a bit.  This allows the paint to adhere as its suppose too.  I know people preach no prep, no prep, but I am here to tell ya, prepping pays off in the end.  Trust me.

Cleaning the Bookcase

I cleaned the piece with vinegar and water to remove all the dust and grime.  My color choice was white.  I was going for the farmhouse feel.  The back would be a piece of beadboard that you can get at Home Depot for around $10 bucks.  It’s a small sheet, not the entire full sheet, so it makes it easier to work with. 

Supply List for the Bookcase Makeover

Dixie Belle Paint in Cotton

Dixie Belle Best Dang Wax

Beadboard Piece

4 Casters – I got mine from Home Depot you can have a look at those



My paint choice was Dixie Belle Chalk Mineral Paint in the color Cotton. I painted the piece, and the shelf, keeping my brush slightly damp.  This helps the paint go on smoother and cuts down on brush strokes.  After a 24-hour drying period, I applied my second coat.  

I allowed the second coat to dry overnight.  It was then heavily distressed on the corners and the ends, where you might see normal wear and tear.  I did this by hand with a piece of 120 grit sandpaper.  Doing it by hand allows you to control how much of the paint you remove.  I also sanded the entire piece and shelf lightly with 220 grit for a smooth finish.  I added one coat of Dixie Belle’s Best Dang Wax to seal the bookcase.

Here she is distressed and staged. But I felt she was missing something.

She needed to be lifted off the floor. Casters had crossed my mind, but they were so expensive these days. So I decided to ponder a day or two.


After visiting our local Home Depot for other items, I was scanning isles as the Hubs purchased wood. And low and behold, I found these casters! And less than $6 bucks each SCORE! I was so excited! You could also paint these if you wanted them black.

New casters for the repurposed bookcase
Home Depot Casters

The Hubs cut four pieces of wood out of an old 4×4 piece.  He added one piece to each corner by using wood screws.  He then screwed the caster into the 4×4 piece.

Adding casters to the repurposed bookcase

Here is the finished bookcase. The casters really add charm!

Bookcase with casters
Bookcase after makeover

Curbside finds can be redone and reloved! If your out and about, don’t pass up the freebie!

Looking for more furniture makeovers ideas? Here are a few other projects you may be interested in!

$3.99 Thrift Store Cabinet Repurposed into Gorgeous Buffet

Upcycled Armoire Cabinet Freebie

It’s not about what it is, it’s about what it will be.”


5 thoughts on “Repurposed Curbside Bookcase Into Farmhouse Shelf – Painted White”

  1. Alicia Hursley

    Thanks for sharing this, Christina! I actually buy storage units and try to flip items. Oftentimes, I just end up tossing a lot of stuff in a dumpster rental, and I thought that would be the case with a bookcase I found in one recently. After following your blog, I was able to bring it back to life and flip it for a good profit.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top