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Lately, I’ve been on a furniture kick. I see all sorts of nifty projects online and think “I can do that” and it’s about time I try! So, when I saw this blog about how to line dresser drawers with gift wrap, I was inspired to get to work.

I decided to line the back of a bookshelf instead of the inside of drawers. I picked a laminate bookcase I’ve had for years with the idea that it wouldn’t be the end of the world if I completely screwed up this project. My mom had some leftover paint she wanted used up, so I decided to sand, prime, and paint my bookcase before applying the gift wrap.

Primed Bookshelf

I painted a little on the back so white would show through if my wrapping paper wasn’t quite big enough. Then I went ahead and sealed it with polyurethane, since it will be getting a lot of use. (I’d rather put in a little more work to begin with than have to do a lot more work later if the paint scratches.)

Now, the fun part! I cut the wrapping paper to fit the inside of the bookcase. I then used a foam brush to put a light layer of matte Mod Podge on a portion of the bottom of the bookshelf and fit part of the wrapping paper to it. I worked my way up in sections instead of putting Mod Podge on the entire inside.

Lined Bookshelf

This gave me a little more control over the bubbling and crinkling. After getting the paper in, I let it dry for about fifteen minutes then put a thin coat of Mod Podge on top of the paper. I repeated this process a few times letting it dry between coats and smoothing as I went. I had never used Mod Podge before, so I didn’t invest in a brayer but used an old ID card to smooth the paper from the middle to the outside. I imagine my method works on smaller projects, but I would go ahead and invest in a brayer (I don’t think they are very expensive) if you’re doing a larger project like this one, because I still had some bubbling. Even though I had some crinkling, it’s not noticeable unless you are looking for it and won’t be noticeable at all once there are books on the shelves.

The last thing I did was clean up the sides with an exacto knife and spray the back a few times with an acrylic sealer. I recommend doing this. The paper feels sturdier like it won’t rip with a lot of use. I love the fun paper on my upcycled laminate bookcase; it really brightens my space.

Finished Bookshelf