Custom Office Bookcases

I hope you guys all had a happy weekend. It was a big birthday weekend for us, which was a fun distraction from all of the projects we have going on. There were chocolate cupcakes and lemon drinks sprinkled with bits of fresh thyme so it made the whole weekend feel extra special!

As you guys know, my Dad was building some bookcases for the office makeover I’m doing as a guest participant for the One Room Challenge. He’s a really talented guy so I knew he could handle it no problem. He built the kitchen island at Loblolly Manor


and our farmhouse style dining room table too.


Over the course of the past few weeks, we had several phone conversations detailing what I wanted and more importantly what I needed. I sent him my favorite book that held the two inspiration images and asked him to marry the pieces of furniture. We discussed trim, mouldings, corbels, paints and measurements…all over the phone. I never saw a picture of what he was doing. I just trusted over and over again he was bringing his best gifts and my mom who appreciates my simple vintage style was guiding him in the appropriate manner (I know, right? I think it was a bit stressful for all of us).


Last week, with heavy rain clouds and a Nor’easter on the way the sweetest parents on the planet delivered the bookcases….and they were so big they were hanging out of my dad’s truck…which is saying a lot because he’s 6’ 4” and his truck is big. I was totally worried they weren’t going to fit through the door…and that my mash potato arms weren’t going to be able to help my dad bring them inside. But we got them in and this what my office looked like for a few days…


I know…tight quarters for sure. I’m standing in the bathroom taking these pictures so I can get all of it in the shot. The untimely weather meant we wouldn’t be able to use the paint sprayer on the almost 9 foot bookcases.


It took me a good part of two days to get them primed with Zinsser


and painted with two coats of Valspar’s Bistro White. These tools really helped get into all of the corners because by day 2 my arms were aching after painting the dresser, desk, wall and trim the week before.


I decided to use the same strategy for painting the bookcases that I used for painting the textured walls…paint the edges first then paint the inside.


It took a detail brush to get into all of the grooves of the dental molding at the top. That detail really makes a difference. My mom did such a good job picking that out…even though I was like…mmmm…I don’t know…like a million times…it may be too fancy for me…like a million times…yes, all over the phone. I’m pretty sure she has the patience of Job. Obviously, she has great taste…so gorgeous, right?


Originally, I wanted to place corbels on the ends of the bookcases. My dad even bought these, which I loved loved loved. He picked them out and everything all by himself.


But once I got the bookcases painted and installed, there was something about the simplicity of the slight bow of the arch mixed with the dental molding that stole my heart.


My initial plan called for 7 and a half foot tall bookcases because my office ceilings are 9 feet. As you can see, he came in just under 9 feet, which gives me the giggles. When I asked him why he built the bookcases so tall he said, “because you said you have a lot of junk and I was trying to help” (insert angel emoji acting all innocent).


every. word. true. But just so we’re clear, Dad, it’s not junk….those are my treasures ☺


See you guys back here tomorrow. In addition to bookcases that were big enough to hold lots of inventory, I also needed a work island and that’s finished now too.

Many blessings,


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  1. Wow!! Beautiful bookcases! Can’t wait to see the whole room makeover!

  2. Oh my gosh CoCo – these bookcases are fabulous! It’s is extra special since they were made with your dad’s own two hands and your mom’s loving heart! Your room is coming together beautifully!

  3. Hi CoCo! Your dad is quite the furniture builder! I absolutely love all the detail of the bookcases. They turned out wonderfully. Can’t wait to read about the island. Hope you have a wonderful week!


  4. Hi, I came across your website yesterday and absolutely love it! I have a question for you and that is to ask what type of paint you used on your lovely bookcases – I generally use Annie Sloan chalk paint but really don’t fancy having to wax all that including the shelves, but don’t think it will be hardy enough without the wax, or am I just being lazy! I might add that I am moving a week today and would like to get them done before the move.
    PS love your home!

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