Do you love a rustic and modern bookcase part 2

Do you love a rustic and modern bookcase part 2? We have the bookcase built and we’re now ready to paint, pipe and work on the shelves. You can find the beginning steps here.

Painting the rustic and modern bookcase

I was so excited to start painting and see how it would look. Before I got going I did some testing on the pine board.

Trying the painting techniques on a test board. This is shows straight paint, 1 coat of thinned down paint and the closest board has 2 coasts of thinned paint.

I didn’t want to stain the bookcase and wasn’t sure I wanted the thick painted look so I did something a little different.

To get the look I was after I thinned my paint down with water. Kind of like a whitewash. I didn’t measure the exact quantities but used about 2/3 paint to 1/3 water. I kept adding water until I had a pretty thin paint, stirring it with a paint stir stick. Making sure it wasn’t so thin that it would run all over but a lot thinner then regular paint.

I was really liking the look after one coat but by the time it dried I could see it needed a second coat. Because it was so thin it really soaked into the wood.

The painted rustic and modern bookcase

I am loving the way it looked.

I taped off the inside pieces so I didn’t get paint where I didn’t want it. My original plan was to only do the face and none of the edges but after pulling off the tap I realized I wanted it done. This was a personal preference but I’m loving the way it looks. I toyed with the idea of painting one more inner piece on the bottom but decided against it. I wanted a break between the black pipe and black paint.

Figuring out the pipe

The part I liked most about the inspiration bookcases was the black pipes. You can find the inspirational pics here. It gave it that rustic modern look I was after. We have used the gas pipe before on other home projects. I love the look but also knew making it work for the bookcase was going to be a challenge unless you are able to cut and thread pipe. Home Depot has the pipe, but are no longer offering the cutting and threading service.

Finding the pipe we dreamed about

On a whim we decided to see what Lowe’s had. On the drive over Monte was talking about what we needed and wondered why it hadn’t been created. Wouldn’t you know we walked in an found exactly what Monte was describing. He actually said, ‘it was like Christmas’. It was what he wanted but didn’t know existed.

The only challenge we had with the Lowe’s pipe was getting it long enough so we had to get creative.

Lowe’s steel-tek pipe.

A lot of options to make any project work

There are a lot of options to make your projects work. It looks like they have 10′ lengths of the black pipe online.

Because the pipe didn’t come long enough we decided to add a horizontal piece across the top then extend the length to what we needed.

It was the look I was really wanting and was so excited when it was going to work out. To extend the length we added shorter pieces and add a horizontal piece across the top with the T we purchased.

We had to get a 72″ length cut to extend the 2 sides and add the horizontal piece across the top.

Cutting our pipe

Figuring out the Pipe

We were pretty careful at Lowe’s making sure our measurements and our design would work but sometimes you never know until your home and see it all laid out.

The pipe will really elevate our rustic modern bookcase.

It was a little tricky getting it to the proper length. Because we were working with two pieces that needed to match up perfectly made for a bit of a struggle.

Working on the perfect length.

After the length was worked out we had to figure out the width. There was a little room for adjustment so I was able to place the pipes on the rustic and modern bookcase exactly where I wanted them.

Getting a visual of the width

It was a little tricky trying to hold all the pieces in place while we figured out where to bolt it in.

Tightening up the horizontal piece

A brillant idea

Monte had brilliant idea. He ran a drywall screw through the foot piece so it stayed in place. Freeing up our hands to work with all the loose pipe.

Adding this one screw to each side was a game changer

After adding the screw so it would hold in place we were able to install and tighten all the short pieces for our shelves.

These are strictly decoration but I really loved the way they looked.

Adding the decorative shelf pieces

I’m so excited about this rustic and modern bookcase

After the pieces were all in place and looking good we were ready to bolt it. We did this last because we wanted to make sure it was all going to work before making holes in the tongue and groove pine board.

The lag screws we used.

These steel tek pipes aren’t going anywhere

A couple of tight corners but Monte was able to make it work

Staining the Shelves for the rustic and modern bookcase

I wanted to finish the shelves beautifully. It took some time to track down the stain I was after. We purchased shelving from Home Depot that we needed to cut to length. It is 1″ x 12″ and 48″ long.

After that was done I gave it a quick sanding. I really love sanding wood.

Giving the shelves a quick sanding

After they were sanded I wiped them off with a blue shop cloth

Once the wood was beautifully smooth I used a wire brush to loosen all the sawdust trapped in the wood grain. I learned the wire bush tip recently and it is a total game changer.

Run the wire brush to loosen all the saw dust hiding in the wood grain

I was so excited to try these two stains together. I found this staining process from an IG influencer who builds beautiful products. If you start with a white wash stain followed by the color you are after it mutes the grain just a bit and gives it a beautiful look.

Ready to stain

I purchased Minwax stain from Lowe’s, a white wash and the Minwax special walnut stain. Plus a water based Polyurethane.

These will make the shelves look amazing …. unfortunately that didn’t work as I hoped

… And it was an epic fail. I loved the way the white wash looked but when I added the special walnut it looked terrible. I was so sad but that is some of the DIY fun. I’m not sure what the problem was but I think it had to do with the wood and not me. It looked like I missed huge patches of white wash.

So on to plan B. I decided to sand it off the best I could.

Good thing I like sanding

I decided to try the Jolie brown wax over the remaining white wash. It’s a favorite product I love to use.

After sanding I wiped the wood, used the wire brush and wiped it again before adding the finishing wax.

It turned out so pretty. There were a couple spots that reacted a little weird but not near as bad as my first attempt.

The Jolie finishing dark wax is so pretty

Since I was working with 4′ boards I covered the whole board with my special wax brush then began wiping it off. Not only does it look amazing the wood feels amazing. It wasn’t the exact look I was after to begin with but I really love it. Because this is a finishing wax I didn’t use the polyurethane I had purchased.

The final steps to Do you love a rustic and modern bookcase part 2?

To add the shelves we needed to move the pipe from one side so we could get the shelves in place. Super quick and easy. Since they are mostly decorative it wasn’t an issue.

We had to move the pipe on one side so I could get the shelves in place.

After the shelves were in place we tightened the pipe and my dream bookcase was finished.

I couldn’t be more excited about the way it turned out.

The beautiful rustic modern bookcase is complete

Decorated and ready to enjoy

Now to the fun part decorating. I knew what decor pieces I really wanted to use and I wanted to add books that I covered in brown paper so it looked neutral and pretty. It is such a beautiful piece with so many pretty design and decor elements.

Such a beautiful unit

Love all the pretty elements

As I work in my office I keep glancing at the shelves and smile.

I’m thrilled with the final product

Decor to the Door

I love beautiful decor. It adds so much to a space. If you’d like some help with seasonal decor check out my site decor to the door also linked in the header. I have gorgeous unique collections of seasonal decor together in one box ready to add beauty to your home.

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I am passionate about cultivating home. Whether you like DIY, design, decor or organization I want to help you cultivate the best home for you. One space and step at a time. Small simple to maintain changes with big results.