Watch Home This Plain Ikea Bookshelf Gets A Facelift! | College Apartment Home Decorating Ideas On A Budget

Who doesn’t love to use Ikea for home decorating projects? I had a spare shelf unit that I never put together and I figured that I should spruce it up a bit and make it into a bench and a shelf. Give it an identity that was unique and decorate my house a bit you know? Now you don’t need any decor classes to put this furniture together, I promise you it’s extremely easy. So I had everything that I needed in my shop which was the Ikea shelf unit, some pieces of lumber, screws/power drill, paint, stain, spackling and a sanding block. The first thing I did was measure the width and length of my shelf unit and cut the lumber according to those measurements (see video). Then I sanded them down and conditioned the wood that I would be using as the bench part (this is optional, I had time), let that dry and stain the top pieces of wood (I was able to fit 3 pieces). After you complete that then again we have to let it dry completely and apply the poly (and yes let it dry!).

Now that we have prepped the wood components fully, it’s time to put the shelving unit together. I took about 30-35 minutes to complete my shelving unit. So my 3 pieces of wood were lined up flush on the floor and I flipped the unit over to rest on it with about an inch space on both ends. Stay with me now because this is where the real back-breaking work comes in, literally. We now have to use the holes already in my Ikea shelf and drill corresponding holes for the screws that I need to put in to secure the wood to the shelf. This has to be done (ready?) all of 36 times! I had to make sure that there was no sliding of that wood once I tipped it over. Next, I incorporated some trim for the edges because I want this to look pretty damn official in the man cave, just be careful to not drill into the area where there are already screws in the shelf ok? Finally, it’s time to board up the back of the shelf bench (I used 2 pieces of wood for this that I had painted white to match the shelf) and secured them with the screws on the ends and to the separating boards in the shelf unit. That’s it! Put a throw cushion on there and lounge away!

Measuring up my boards for the shelf unit. | apartment decor ideas

Measuring up my boards for the shelf unit. | apartment decor ideas

For my shelf unit soon to turn “shelf bench unit”, I need to cut some lumber up for the additional parts that would make it into a bench as well as the shelf (apartment decor ideas).

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Now it’s time to cut according to the measurements I got from the shelf. | decor room ideas

Now it's time to cut according to the measurements  I got from the shelf. | decor room ideas

I cut up my pieces of lumber for my shelf bench (decor room ideas) and it was based on the measurements of the shelf.

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These are the pieces I got after I was finished. | custom decorative designs

These are the pieces I got after I was finished. | custom decorative designs

These were all the pieces that I needed to go on to the shelf unit- three for the bench, two for the back of the unit (to wall it up) and the trim for around the unit (custom decorative designs).

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It’s fun time again kids, the perilous sanding of the wood!

It's fun time again kids, the perilous sanding of the wood!

Gosh how I hate to sand wood, it’s a must do, but I don’t have to like it while I do it right?

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I am staining the conditioned wood (you don’t have to condition first, it’s optional) | summer decor ideas

I am staining the conditioned wood (you don't have to condition first, it's optional) | summer decor ideas

This project is perfect for (summer decor ideas) when the weather is nice and warm, not saying you can’t do it when it’s cold…but the drying goes a lot better in warmer temperatures.

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After my stain dried, it was time to put on the poly! | decor designer

After my stain dried, it was time to put on the poly! | decor designer

This was a quick job, the poly glided on like silk on that fresh stain you can call me the best decor designer now (smile).

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Painting the boards that go to the back of the shelf white.

Painting the boards that go to the back of the shelf white.

l didn’t want to make the backing of the shelf brown, I wanted to give only the bench part of the shelf unit a nice dark brown finish.

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It’s time folks to put our Ikea shelf together.

It's time folks to put our Ikea shelf together.

Here we go, it’s was time to finally put the main attraction together and Ikea didn’t disappoint, all done in 30 minutes!

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My finished shelf, ready to meet the newest addition.

My finished shelf, ready to meet the newest addition.

So this is what I ended up with after that quick assembly. A four-compartment shelf that would continue to sit on the floor.

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I had the 3 pieces of wood lined up flush on the floor.

I had the 3 pieces of wood lined up flush on the floor.

After I lined up the wooden pieces that would be used as the top of the bench (I made it flush). I placed the shelf directly on top of it with about a 1/2 inch space on each end.

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Get ready for this, I was drilling for a while!

Get ready for this, I was drilling for a while!

So I had to screw the bench to the shelf in each compartment space. That’s nine times in each box!

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The easy part was applying the trim to the base of the bench.

The easy part was applying the trim to the base of the bench.

We can call it a bench now (smile), I am now just placing the trim around the sides of the bench and screwing them in with the power drill, making sure to avoid the screws that were already in place.

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Yes, this entire project involved me drilling away on the floor!

Yes, this entire project involved me drilling away on the floor!

It’s almost complete and I am finishing up on the trim installment, what do you guys think so far?

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Who’s up for a game of dominoes? Lady sure is interested.

Who's up for a game of dominoes? Lady sure is interested.

Well, guys, this was what I had when I was done with the drilling and what not. I decided to challenge my dog to a game of dominoes and I lost!

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Another angle of my shelf bench all spruced up!

Another angle of my shelf bench all spruced up!

I threw in some black plastic baskets and a decorative throw pillow with some extra zest! It’s a really decent addition to my home decor!

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