Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Pottery Barn Knock Off: Wooden Shelf

So I told you we'd finished a few projects for the living room and I'm finally ready to introduce my favorite...our big beautiful wooden shelf. I'm so excited to have this hanging over the TV so I can stare at it while David watches boring fishing shows or playoff hockey. Nobody cares about hockey Boomer.
Here's the inspiration from Pottery Barn, which I've admired for a while:
Pottery Barn Shelf $399
But there are two issues with Pottery Barn's version. 1) It's four hundred dollars, so no. 2) It's just a little too much for me...height-wise. I like the style but I only wanted two levels, so David and I designed our own version using crown and base molding.

The bottom part is a simple piece of upside-down baseboard from Home Depot, but for the top we needed a large piece of crown and neither Home Depot nor Lowe's carry any that are big enough. We ended up finding this one at Ring's End Lumber....a local lumber shop David frequents for work.

He cut and backed both with supporting pieces of just scrap wood, all of course while I wasn't there to photograph it. Then he put a piece of wood on top of the crown and this what it looked like at the corners:
We attached a 2x4 to the wall to screw the shelf into from the top and put it up there to make sure we liked the position and size.
And there it sat. And sat. And sat....as I debated what to do with it....
Originally I planned to make it look just like the Pottery Barn version, which meant staining it, covering it with a layer of paint, and then sanding it down to essentially shabby-chic it up, like I did with our nightstand trays.
But that project taught me that shabby-chic is not really my style. I do enjoy these trays, but I don't have big plans for shabby-chic-ing again. So then I thought about priming and painting the shelf white, but the idea wasn't thrilling me for some reason. A little too boring I think. That would also make it very matchy-matchy with the crown molding above and the TV stand below.

Then the inspiration came, and I'm so glad I waited. One of my favorite bloggers, Katie Bower, posted a tutorial about whitewashing. It immediately hit me that that's what I wanted for the shelf. I was thrilled. It was perfect timing and the simplest tutorial ever. And the best part? I already had everything I needed for the project....water (check), white paint (check), a paint brush (check) and paper towels (check check check). So thank you Katie for the most perfectly timed inspiration and for being so freaking fabulous.

So I sanded the shelf down until it was completely smooth and then followed Katie's simple tutorial for whitewashing the shelf.
I made my paint by mixing equal parts water and white paint (the same color we use on all our trim - Valspar's Snowcap White) and stirring it very well. (Nice basement/painting area rug huh?)
Then I coated the whole thing in my white-wash and David helped by continuing to stir it as I painted. Here it is after one coat.
We decided there wasn't quite as much coverage as we wanted, but it dries very quickly so we gave it an hour or so and did another coat.
Here's what it looks like up close and personal after the two coats. Oh my goodness it's gorgeous with the wood grain showing through.
Then we hung her up...
...and added some summertime decor.
There's the Made With Love and Oats version of Pottery Barn's Decorative Ledge. And the living room redesign slowly progresses....


countertop website said...

Pretty decent. I like its simplicity.

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