simple is beautiful

Guest Blogger, Emily A. Clark

Monday, August 23, 2010

I am so excited to share my very first guest blogger, Emily Clark, with you.  Emily lives about an hour away from me here in North Carolina and while we haven't had the opportunity to meet in person, I always enjoy reading about her inspiring projects.  She has the best luck with Craigslist and today she is going to share one of her favorite finds.

When I think of a creating a cozy living space, bookcases always come to mind.  There's something about a collection of books and personal objects that makes a room feel so comfortable.

So, with that thought, I was determined to find a space for some bookcases of my own.  I had planned to buy a couple of Billy bookcases from IKEA when I found these little beauties on Craigslist:

No, I'm not totally crazy.  They were the perfect size to fit right under our stairs, and when I saw those paneled doors, I knew I was onto something.  Oh, and did I mention they were only $20 a piece?

Fast forward a couple of  months later (I may have procrastinated a little):

After sanding through the eight layers of neon paint underneath the brown, they were ready for a few coats of white gloss paint.

Once they were painted and moved into the house, I painted the backs a deep navy (Stunning by Benjamin Moore).  Painting or papering the backs of your bookcases is the easiest way to give them instant style, and makes them already appear more filled before you even start accessorizing.

To style them, I used lots of old books (or took the dust jackets off of newer ones) and added in some favorite black and white family photos.

I had several older accessories that were sitting in boxes in my garage, so I got them out and sprayed them white as well to give them a fresh look.  I like the way they pop against the navy.  If you don't have older accessories to use, one of my best resources is Goodwill.  There's always an abundance of brass candlesticks, trays, bowls and knick-knacks that can be easily updated with spray paint.

Thanks to Rene for letting me share one of my favorite Craigslist finds.  If you would like to see the rest of this room and more of my furniture makeovers, be sure to stop by my blog.

Thanks again Emily! 


  1. Great post!

    You must have been a fly on our wall last night as I shared my ideas to my husband of adding these to our living room ;)


  2. Great find!! I love the blue in the back, it really adds interest. Thank you for sharing!!

  3. I LOVE Emily's work, and she continues to inspire me while I search out things to repurpose!

  4. Loved the guest post! Emily is awesome!

    My post today is about my bookshelves in my library. = )

  5. Emily is so talented and she did such an amazing job transforming these bookcases! Janell

  6. Rene: What a great first guest blogging post. Emily, what a great find!!! The navy on the back is really pretty, we need bookcases too, just might have to start searching. (one of my favorite things to do!) --Gretchen O.

  7. Love Emily's work and style. Those bookcases are amazing. Love the white and navy and her displays are great.

  8. Great guest to have for your first guest post. I love Emily and she is one talented and stylish lady. Happy Monday to you both!! Kathysue

  9. Love the great Craigslist finds. So awesome what you did with them!

  10. love a good craigslist makeover! Fabulous guest post, very excited to hear about your blog over on Emily's!

  11. That is such a transformation. Wow.

  12. Rene...I really like your Craigslist makeover. I too shop online classifieds here in Canada...I can't believe sometimes what people are willing to part with. Sometimes they ask too much and sometimes you can find an awesome deal.

  13. What a great deal! The bookcases turned out fabulous. Emily does have quite a knack for transforming things. She was an excellent guest blogger.

  14. Love how she transformed these bookcases - if only I could style a bookcase like she does!!

  15. Oh how I adore Emily!

    I need to find some bookcases for my family room! they are a must in any design!

  16. Very nice guest post, Emily. I love the navy background of the bookcases. Very nice.


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