A Fun & Functional Bookshelf

When we moved into this house my cooking magazines and recipe binders didn’t fit into my new kitchen.  There just wasn’t any space for them so I kept them in my office.  It drove me nuts though because as I said yesterday it’s always best if you can store stuff where you use it (and avoid being annoyed if at all possible).

I’ve been wanting to add a buffet of some kind to my dining room to store these things but I haven’t been able to find anything that wouldn’t break the budget.  Then the other day as I was strolling through Wal-Mart as I tend to do I found this awesome bookshelf on sale.  I loved it immediately and while it wasn’t exactly what I had in mind I knew I could make it work.  Especially at the price of $39.00, sweet!

(the glass canister holds the dog treats)

It even came with those two fabric bins you see, perfect for storing my tablecloths!  I really do love it.  In fact I love it so much I bought a second one to use as a TV stand in the basement.  The two bins work nicely for corralling all the Wii stuff that never seems to end.

Now that they’re in my dining room, I’d really like to replace the colorful striped magazine holders with something a little more classy but it’s tough to beat 99 cents 🙂  If I had more inclination or even more patience I’d just cover these myself with pretty scrapbook paper but nope they don’t bother me enough to do that…hahaha.

If you’d like to print off this FREE God is Great Prayer Wall Art for yourself, visit Simply Awesome Printables!

If and when I ever do get an actual buffet I can use this piece just about anywhere in the house.  It would make a great nightstand in my daughter’s room or in my office as a printer stand.  I don’t have room for it in my entryway but I wish I did because it would look great there to house hats and mitts and all the other stuff that needs a home as you walk in the door.

Oh and if you’re curious about my recipe binders check out how I organized them: Part One and Part Two.  As you’ll see I did a little purging when we moved 🙂

Filed under: Organizing Solutions, Recipe Organization


48 Responses to A Fun & Functional Bookshelf

  1. 1
    Claire @ Claire K Creations says

    I wish we had Wal-Mart in Australia. Every time I’m in the States I visit it. Such a great buy!

  2. 2
    Marcia Francois, Organising Queen says

    I love it, Laura 🙂

    I also have great intentions – if only I was more crafty… although I must admit my decorating went up a notch this Christmas (which is still about a 1 on the scale of most of North America :)) simply from reading more decorating blogs.

    So do you think there’s hope for us if we read more crafty blogs? 🙂

    • 2.1
      Laura says

      LOL, nope afraid not 🙂

  3. 3
    Kim @ Homesteader's Heart says

    I didn’t see them at the 3 Wal-marts that I live within 10 miles of. LOL! I’ll have to go back and look harder because that’s exactly what I’ve been looking for.

    • 3.1
      Laura says

      You know Kim there were only two in the store when I went and I bought them both and I’ve not seen them again. Not sure if they were part of a January special or what….hmmmm.

  4. 4
    Joan J says

    Just FYI for anyone not finding them at WallyWorld – IKEA has the same bookcase on sale this week, at the same price, minus the fabric bins. Just FYI.

    • 4.1
      Laura says

      Good to know, thanks!

  5. 5
    camille says

    Hi Laura,

    Beautiful find. I do have an idea for you regarding your magazine holders. I bought cheap cd cases from IKEA I loved the price but hated the color. I had some spray paint and NOW I love them. May want to give it a try, you may already have some paint somewhere. Happy spray painting!!

    • 5.1
      Laura says

      I’ll have to give that some thought…even the idea of spray paint scares me. I tried to spray paint vases one time and it was a DISASTER! 🙂

      • daphne says

        you can use any kind of paint on the magazine holders. I used regular wall paint and just painted mine to match my kitchen. They were the cheap cardboard ones and have held up fine for years.

      • camille says

        Cardboard is much easier though. Do it on a sunny day and do a light dusting of spray paint first to act as a primer, then come and finish off. Or get the hubby to do it. : )

  6. 6
    Sarah @ Mum In Bloom says

    Love this shelf.. especially that it comes with those baskets! I’m gonna search for the sweet grace printable online too. Very inspiring project indeed. Now off to Walmart I go ;o)

  7. 7
    Beth says

    What a great find. It looks perfectly organized, I need one of these for my sewing magazines. Off to shop, thanks for the great idea.

  8. 8
    Sharisse says

    I absolutely love it!! I have the perfect spot in my home for a shelf like that!! I would also love to find where the grace printable is, if anyone knows. I’ll try to google it and if I find it post the link here. Off to search the Walmart and Ikea website, so excited!!

    • 8.1
      Laura says

      Thank you!!

  9. 9
    HaB says

    Hi! LOVE the bookcase. Can you give us a little more information regarding the brand. I tried searching Walmart.com and came up empty handed. This would be PERFECT in my kitchen. Thanks!

    • 9.1
      Laura says

      The brand is the Walmart one called Mainstays.

  10. 10
    Phyllis P. says

    I LOVE this! What a great idea 🙂

    Did it come in black by chance?? Can you share the mfr. info, model # or anything like that? THIS is EXACTLY what I’ve been searching for use in our home office. Please do share all the details you can!!

    • 10.1
      Laura says

      The brand is the Walmart one called Mainstays and I didn’t see it any other colors. I’ll see if I can find it online for you.

      • Phyllis P. says

        Thakns so much! I appreciate it! Showed the pic to husband and he loved it. I will search out Mainstay’s website and see what they have to offer. Thanks again!! Time to finish cleaning off the first disaster zone of the day…. the desk this message is coming from to you! 🙂 Enjoy your weekend!

  11. 11
    [email protected] says

    re: the magazine rack, you could just find some scrapbook paper or wrappping paper that you like and recover them to co-ordinate your room. 🙂 I like the shelf too. I am looking for super-tall ones for my living room. Tough to find!

      • [email protected] says

        Thanks. I did find some on Ikea website that I liked but unfortunately no Ikea near here (but apparently we will be getting one in 2013… long wait though!) and the shipping is too ridiculous at this point. But thanks so much for your comment! 🙂

  12. 12
    Sharisse says

    I looked a the Walmart website and didn’t see it online but will look in their stores. On the Ikea site it’s the Expedit model and the price was lowered to $39.99. I wonder if both Ikea and Walmart’s models are the same size?? http://www.ikea.com/us/en/catalog/products/20135300

    • 12.1
      Laura says

      The dimensions of mine are 28″ x 28″

    • 13.1
      Laura says

      Ahhh you’re awesome, thank you. I’ll update my post to include it!

  13. 14
    Kara @ KSS says

    I looked for the bookshelf online, but I couldn’t find it. Do you know if it’s in-store only?

  14. 15
    Summer Jo Brooks says

    I am featuring you on my blog later today!
    Check it out: believingboldly.com

  15. 16
    Living the Balanced Life says

    I love pieces of furniture that can be versatile and moved around and used as your needs change! We have several things like that!
    We have room in our kitchen/dining area to put an island, and have thought about getting a large furniture looking piece for years. Instead, we have a tall butcher board and steel breakfast nook table as an island. It has 2 shelves that I store big bowls and pans on. It is on wheels so we can move it all around. Our kitchen table is butted up against it. The room is a large open space so the cool thing is when we have guests or a party, we can move things all around. So as much as I would like a large buffet looking island, I think I will stick with my versatile one!
    There is a God and it isn’t me

  16. 17
    Melissa says

    Hey there~
    I’m moving in June and want to start this business of purging now, instead of waiting until the last minute. Any helpful advice as to where to begin?


  17. 20
    Angela says

    Such a great find! I love the idea of keeping all your tablecloths in the bin. I have “seasonal” tablecloths that I just end up storing throughout the year. This is a great alternative. The other bin could house my aprons. You have the wheels in my head turning now. Thanks for sharing!!!

  18. 21
    Laura says

    You could always just spray paint them whatever color you like. That’s what I did with mine.

    • 21.1
      Laura says

      Can you spray paint cardboard?

  19. 22
    Laura says

    Sure can. I actually made some magazine holders out of cereal boxes and spray painted those as well. I had to do two coats to cover up the designs, but it worked great! Hope that helps!

    • 22.1
      Laura says

      Well who knew! Although I did try spray painting vases before and it was a complete disaster…didn’t cover at all. I think I probably didn’t use the right spray paint and then the mess, oh my word! I think I’m just going to wait for a sale LOL or get myself a crafty friend 🙂

  20. 23
    Marilyn Holeman says

    Laura, I think you should go for it! Spray painting the cardboard magazine holders should be pretty simple. (It’s something even I can do!) And it will give you confidence. The vases probably weren’t a good first-time project. Thanks for all your inspiration. I wanted to cheer you on, like you seem to do for me. Blessings!

  21. 24
    Lisa says

    Going home to experiment with baskets on a similar bookshelf–great idea!

  22. 25
    Anna says

    This would be perfect in my study! I went to one of the nearby Walmart’s this evening and alas, there were none. 🙁 I did see some taller bookshelves in a similar style but not in white & no bins. It looks a lot sturdier than some of the other “cheap” bookshelves.

  23. 26
    grace says

    great bookshelf and the bins are wonderful for hiding stuff. Spring is some time away in my part of the country but for a lot of you the weather is great.
    Check out garage sales or moving sales. Color wrong spray paint the books shelf and you should be able to find the bins some where.

    I have binders for my recipes and have started to reorganize them. Need to get busy and finish it after reading your old posts on your binders.

  24. 28
    lorie says

    anymore details on the bookcase I went to Walmart and could not find it 🙁

  25. 29
    Chanin says

    Thank you so much for posting my printable on your blog! It looks great! I have the same one hanging in my kitchen. My girls say this prayer every night before dinner! 🙂

    • 29.1
      Astoria Girl says

      My husband has said this prayer before dinner since he was in kindergarten. I was so excited to find this! Thank you!


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