before and after upcycle

How to Upcycle a Cabinet: 5 Steps

In this blog I’m going to share with you how I upcycled this cabinet into a neighbourhood library


There is nothing better than taking an old piece of furniture and creating a new way for it to be used. That is what have done with this fun cabinet. 
This DIY July Bunnings  are challenging the DIY community to give back and I was so excited to be part of this project and create a neighbourhood library using an old cabinet. 
I found this cabinet on one of my many Salvation Army thrift store trips and loved how unique it was. There are some great finds at the op shop that you can upcycle and make your own or use as is and the best part about it is and it’s easy on your wallet.
For this project I headed to my local bunnings to pick up some materials and got to work. As we have been renovating for some time I took advantage of items and paint that we already had. 
sanding cabinet<br />

Step One: Preparation 

I was planning to paint this cabinet so I sanded it to rough up the varnish to give the paint a surface to stick.

As the cabinet will most likely be kept outside I decided to coat the back and top with a water proof membrane as there were some cracks in the wood. If you were using this cabinet internally this wouldn’t be necessary.


emboss<br />

Step Two: Waterproof the windows

To add a layer of protection to the glass, I embossed it using a frosted privacy film. I measured the glass panes and cut them down to size. 

You need a solution to spray on the glass to wet the adhesive and smooth out the film. At first, I used water mixed with washing detergent to manipulate the frosting in place but I found this left a white residue on under the window film.

I swapped out the soap mixture for water and this worked in the same way and didn’t leave any marks. Once it was dry I used an external caulk around the edges of the glass and left it for 24 hours to dry.


Step Three: Prime & Paint 

I primed the cabinet using a tinted primer then applied two coats of a Dulux black satan exterior paint


Step Four: Adding some personality

We are gifting This community library to our local kindergarten; I wanted to add a pop of colour. I applied peel-and-stick contact to the back of the cabinets. I measured each back panel and cut them to size. Application is a little tricky as it’s very sticky, and you want to avoid bubbles. I peeled the top of the wallpaper back and applied it using a scraper as you pull the back from the wallpaper.

Step Five: Signage

I cut some vinyl for the library signs using my cricut Joy and added these as a finishing touch

neighbourhood library

The kids have had a load of fun helping me pick out some books to donate and start the library off and we can’t wait to help the kindy get it installed.

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