the farmers market bookcase.

Last winter I purchased a beautiful armoire via a Facebook Marketplace ad, and coincidentally, I knew the seller.  She’d purchased a few of my pieces in the past.

While I was at her home picking up the armoire, she mentioned that she had a few other pieces she wanted to sell including this bookcase.

It’s not my normal style, but it’s a really nice quality piece and I thought it could be fun to make over, so I purchased it.

It’s a bit odd though because it’s collapsible.  I’m struggling to figure out why one would want a collapsible bookcase.  Especially one that is as heavy as this one is.  It’s not like you’re going to tote it around and set it up whenever you have a sudden need for a bookcase.  But the shelves are hinged and fold upward.  Then the sides fold in, and the top and bottom fold in as well.

It took me all year to get around to doing something with it because it was a bit clunky to wrangle it around with all of those hinging pieces.  But I finally pulled it out of hiding last week and got it painted up.

After giving it a light scuff sanding all over, and then cleaning it with TSP substitute, I gave it a base coat of B.O.S.S. after Mr. Q looked at it and said ‘gosh, that stain looks like it would bleed thru’.  I allowed the B.O.S.S. to dry for 24 hours and then gave the bookcase two coats of Dixie Belle’s Dried Sage.

I ‘discovered’ this color last summer when I painted a dresser I got from a friend.  Based on the name, I assumed this color would be more of a sage green … and I’ll admit, I’m not a huge fan of your typical sage green.  But then I used it and realized it’s a fabulous medium warm brownish-greyish sort of color with a green undertone.  I went on to use it on my potting shed floor, although I lightened it up a tad for that using some Drop Cloth.

It was the perfect color for this bookcase.

However, this color is such a chameleon that I really struggled to capture it correctly in my photos.  It changes with the light, and compared to what is beside it.

After the Dried Sage was dry, I decided to add my wallcutz Farmers Market stencil to the top of the bookcase.  I liked the sign I made earlier this month with that stencil so much that I wanted to use it again.

So I got to work stenciling.  It took a couple of tries to get the colors right.  I initially started off using  Drop Cloth to stencil the large wording, and that just didn’t work so I sanded it down and painted a fresh coat of the Dried Sage so I could try again. Ultimately I realized I should paint up a tester board to try and get the colors right before attempting the stencil again.

I painted the board in Dried Sage, then I added a few swipes of the Cocoa Bean because I would have a Cocoa Bean shadow under the larger words.  I tried Burlap, but it was too brown.  I tried Cashmere, but it was too yellow.  I tried Sawmill Gravy straight up, but it was too light.  Finally it occurred to me that I could mix some Sawmill Gravy with the Dried Sage itself creating a lighter version of the color.

And that was perfect.  It’s subtle, but still very legible.  Applying the stencil to the top of this bookcase adds just a little something special to it, but it’s definitely not an ‘in your face’ sort of detail.

When looking directly at the bookcase from the front you don’t even see the stencil.

I also added the bottom portion of the stencil to the top shelf using my custom mixed color.

Once everything was dry, I sanded lightly to distress and then added a couple of coats of Dixie Belle’s flat clear coat to protect it all.

Now it’s perfect for displaying some ironstone

or maybe some brown transferware.

All this bookcase needed was a little bit of paint to bring out its charm.

What do you think?

This bookcase is for sale, so be sure to check my ‘available for local sale‘ page for details if you are local and in need of a bookcase.

Thank you to Dixie Belle Paint Co for providing the paint used in this makeover.

17 thoughts on “the farmers market bookcase.

  1. Love the colour and such a versatile piece. I was thinking a collection of small antique egg baskets would also look lovely on it or old dairy cream jugs.


    1. It still seems wildly unpractical to me, but I am now thinking it’s meant to evoke the style of a campaign piece but not really be functional in that way. Maybe?


  2. Your makeover is lovely! However, I am finding more and more of us are seeking that old original wood finish. Trends, who can figure them out, lol.


    1. Yep, I agree. I actually offered this bookshelf to my sister in its ‘before’ state and when she saw it in person she said ‘that’s really orange’ … so maybe it looked better in the ‘before’ photo that in person.


  3. Oh, it’s perfect! Bookcases are a hot seller here but it’s difficult to find smaller ones. I wish we had more available around our area. Have a lovely day!


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