Who doesn't love a built in?

I for one love a beautiful built in, and I have a couple in my two spare bedrooms, but they were not the type of built in I dream about so of course I had to do a little tweaking.  These were not original to the house but were a great idea by the former owners to maximize a small space that would have otherwise gone unused.  I had always planned to keep them but just do a little upgrade to make them more attractive and easier to use. 

The old shelves were made out of  wire with the plastic coating on them so placing small items on top was an issue since they would fall right through.  Here they are before, I started dismantling them before I grabbed the camera but you can see the shelves off to the side and one still in the bookcase.  I am not sure what part the cement looking contact paper played on the bottom shelf but needless to say, that is now gone!

Thank goodness for our amazing friend next door with his handy saw and nail gun (I must have a nail gun by the way), this project went off with only minor measurement hitches (that was my fault by the way, nothing is straight in these old houses!).  Other than that this project took a couple hours and...TA DAAAAA!

I am so happy with how this turned out and on Monday I will show you a tutorial on how we hung the shelves using pretty molding rather than the brackets that the home improvement stores insisted I use,  I am so thankful that was not my only option!  What do you think?  Would you have tried to use this space for something else or keep the built in? 

See you swoon,


  1. What an improvement! I agree that you must have a nail gun. I think my husband would marry his if he could. I was very afraid of it for a while, but he made me use it when we put in new baseboards and crown molding. I have to admit it was kind of scary, but also a rush. Can't wait to see what you do with your snazzy new built in :)

  2. I love it! What are you going to put on them! I'm cracking up at Heather's husband wanting to commit adultery with his nail gun.

  3. Wow, I can't believe how great that looks. I love it. I am your latest follower. I would love for you to come and check out my blog and follow me back at www.diybydesign.blogspot.com. Thanks so much.

  4. The nail gun made me nervous at first too but it was so much fun and man does that thing make life so much easier! It did scare me to death when the compressor went on and I was not expecting it though.

    Hi Judy! Welcome to Swoon and thank you so much for following us. I have been visiting your blog this morning and *LOVE* it. The board and batten in your mud room is to die for, I want to do laundry at your house!