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The quick and easy way to add character and update bookshelves or any cabinet.

Does your home need a little update? This quick and easy DIY project for your home can be completed in 1 hour for less than $10!

Yes, it’s true! Try this project this weekend and update built ins, bookshelves or even a china hutch with this quick and clever decor idea.

Not only does it add character to a piece of furniture, but it’s also easy on the budget.

Can you guess what I used? It’s not wallpaper!

Bookshelves Before DIY Project for My Home

Easy Bookshelves Update

Lets take a look at my DIY built in bookshelves before my little update. They were fine, but I’d been dreaming about adding shiplap, pallet wood, or maybe wallpaper for quite some time. 

However, I just couldn’t commit to just one design. What if I changed my mind and I didn’t like it?

Clearly, it would be difficult to undo. Not to mention that I change my mind quite often. 

Keep scrolling, and I’ll share what I used that looks terrific, cost me less than $10 and is easily removable if, I were to change my mind.

And for more ideas to add value to your home take a look at 10 Sensational Home Improvement Ideas on a Budget.

Supplies Needed for this Home DIY Project

Clearly, there are many options and patterns for bulletin board paper. I happened to see the brick bulletin board paper at Michaels and knew it was what I was looking for. You will also find shiplap, pallet wood and wood grain designs for example. Look around your area and see what’s available. I’ve also seen many patterns of bulletin board paper at Hobby Lobby.

Supply List:

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Measure and Cut

First, you’ll need to measure the back of the bookshelves or cabinet you would like to cover.

Then, measure and cut paper to fit your area.

In my opinion, a craft knife would be the easiest way to cut each piece. However, my blade was dull and began to tear the paper.

Therefore, I just used scissors. I was too lazy to go to the store and buy a new blade.

Dry Fit

DIY Project for Your Home

Next, you’ll want to dry fit each piece.

Learn from my mistake, my first piece went up perfectly. However, my second piece was not quite cut perfectly. I positioned it and I could see that it needed a little adjusting. Well in the process I tore it a little bit and needed to cut a new piece.

Add Painters Tape

I found painters tape the perfect solution for adhering my bulletin board paper. 

Not only did it adhere well, but I know down the road when I want to remove it, it will not damage the painted surface.

Also, I tried both FrogTape and a Blue Painters Tape that I had on hand. I found the FrogTape to stick better. 

Where I had used the Blue tape it loosened in a couple of areas and I had to replace the tape with the green FrogTape.

I believe it is easier to place the tape on the paper, than to place the tape to the bookshelf and then add the paper.

In fact, I tried both ways and found it easier to apply the tape directly to the paper.

Position Paper

Simple Home Decor Idea

Next, position the paper along the top edge of the bookshelf and begin pressing from the center towards the sides.

DIY Project for Your Home

Then, continue to smooth the paper from the center downward adhering the the sides and bottom edge of the paper to the surface.

Before and After View

Simple Home Decor Idea

Take a look at my progress. The back of my shelves on the left side are now completely covered with the paper. It makes quite a difference. I’m loving the change already!

Easy Bookshelves Update
DIY Project for Your Home

Now take a look at the right side of my bookshelves with the way it looked before this little DIY home project.

Then, take a look at what it looks like now. I now feel like the bookshelves are much more interesting and have a depth to them that I’m loving!

So Realistic, See Who You Can Fool

Easy DIY Project Bookshelves Update

I have to share I little story with you. The afternoon I did this little DIY project for my home I received a FaceTime call from my son. I was sitting in the chair in front of the built ins. 

Right away he noticed and wanted to know if I had tiled the back of the bookshelves. He and his wife had been looking at a tile just like this paper for the backsplash in the their kitchen. They couldn’t believe it was just paper.

Now this solution to add a little depth and interest to my bookshelves will not work as a backsplash. However, think of the possibilities where it could add a bit of drama to your home.

My brain has already been working, deciding where I may do this again.

Easy DIY Project Bookshelves Update
Easy DIY Project Bookshelves Update

Ready to Try This DIY Project in Your Home?

Please tell me, is this little DIY project for your home something you’d like to try? Clearly, it’s not expensive and can add a lot of interest to your home.

Please share with us where you would like to try it. We would love to hear your thoughts on this little DIY project. I love the change it made I my home.

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Thanks for spending some time with us today!

And as always here at Sunny Side Design


DIY Project for Your Home

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This Post Has 6 Comments

  1. Debi

    Is the paper textured? It is very realistic looking. My original thought was it was brick paneling

    1. Michelle Dickson

      Did I fool you too? I fooled my son, he thought I had tiled the back of the bookcase with brick tile. No it’s not textured, it’s smooth paper. It is very realistic looking however.

  2. syl

    I like it and would like to try it. I’m also nosy. What’s in the binders on the bottom shelf?

    1. Michelle Dickson

      Great Sly, we are glad you liked this little project. Not only was it easy to do, but it totally changed the way my built ins felt. The binders on the bottom shelf are scrapbooks. I like to have them easily accessible for my family to enjoy.

  3. Sally Gillies

    VERY clever. It makes me wish I had bookcases!

    1. Michelle Dickson

      Thank you Sally. This technique would also be fun in a hutch.

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