Bookcase Progress (And Will The Painting Ever End?!)

Over the last week-and-a-half, I have scraped, scrubbed, drilled, sawed, caulked, sanded, grouted, primed, and painted so much that my wrists and hands are so achy and sore that the thought of picking up a paint brush today makes me want to shed a few tears.

But there’s no time for tears.  🙂

I was certain that I could get the bookcase wall in my living room finished yesterday to show you the finished product today.  I didn’t.  I painted last night until I literally could no longer grip a roller or paint brush due to my aforementioned sore hands.  But I WILL get it finished today!!  Even if I have to tape the brush/roller to my hand.  😀

So in the meantime, let me show you the progress.  I got one side painted, and even got the light installed.

DIY built-in bookcase wall - one side painted with lighting installed

But you can see that the wall between the bookcases is still a mess, and the trim on the walls that I had to remove to install the lower cabinets has been cut and put into place, but right now it’s just sitting there.  I still need to actually attach it to the wall, and then do more caulking, wood filling, sanding, priming and painting before it’s done.  Oh, and I also have to do some drywall mudding to some areas where I accidentally tore away a bit too much wall texture while removing the trim.

But it’s coming along!

Here’s the preview that I shared last night on the A2D Facebook page

DIY built-in cabinets and bookcase

The other bookcase is still just primed, and looks pretty awful at this point.

DIY built-in bookcase wall - one side primed only - still needs to be painted and have lighting installed

But I will…I WILL…finish this today!!  🙂



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  1. Kristi you are a true inspiration. I love to paint but sometimes it just takes too long. I spent two hours cutting in last night and 25 minutes rolling on my first coat. It can take so long sometimes and you just want to get it done. You are a trooper.

    I have a question about the wood paneling in the tiny bathroom. Exactly where did you get it and what is it’s cost.

    1. I got that paneling at Home Depot. It’s called something like Knotty Pine Wood Panels (but don’t quote me on that). It’s located near the beadboard tongue and groove strips (which is different from the big 4′ x 8′ beadboard sheets). Anyway, the strips are 8 feet long, and each package has about 6 or 8 strips in it. Each package is about $15.

      It’s definitely more expensive than the 4′ x 8′ hardboard sheets that I used in my other bathroom to create a faux wood plank wall, and if I hadn’t been on such a time crunch (trying to get the walls finished so that my father-in-law could install the toilet for me), then I definitely would have opted to go with the hardboard cut into strips again, simply because the finished look is similar (in fact, I like the hardboard better), and it’s so much cheaper. But generally, when you’re short on time, things cost more. 🙂

  2. Kristi … bravo! The cabinets are gorgeous! Wish you lived close to me (TN) so that I could hire you for some home improvements! 🙂 Your finished product is every bit as good or better in most cases than the so called professionals that I have used in the past. Keep up the good work!

  3. It is looking amazing. And look at how far you’ve come in such a short period of time! I can’t wait to see the finished result.

  4. No time for tears? There’s always time! Sometimes I think that’s how our house gets finished, LOL. You are doing great! Thanks for the inspiration.

  5. These built-ins are going to be amazing! I love the completed side and know you’ll get the other side completed today. That is a new look for your living room and I love it.

    I suffer from arthritis and know what you’re talking about. When you’re done today, alternate ice and heat and use a mild pain reliever. Your hands will feel much better tomorrow.

  6. I feel you pain, I have carpal tunnel, and my hands hurt even when I don’t over do it.
    It’s looking great! Keep up the good work! 🙂

  7. I wish I lived close enough to come help you. It looks amazing. Can’t wait to see it completed. Hope you can take a long soothing bath when you are done.

  8. Wow! Those look amazing! I wish I could be there to help you. I love helping others, but can’t seem to start much myself. Yay for you!

  9. I hardly ever comment on blogs but I just had to let you know how amazing you are! You are doing such a beautiful job! Praying for your continued strength to get it all finished in time! May God bless you abundantly.

  10. wow Kristi, you are B R A V E women!!! well done, it’s so beautiful…wish you good luck with the new house. I handshake your sore hands

  11. I agree with all of the others. You are so talented. You’ve done so much by yourself in such a short time and it’s looking amazing! Hang in there, we are cheering you on from afar.

  12. Wow, we are moving out of Texas on Friday but if we weren’t, I think I would want to purchase your condo because it’s beautiful. I just recently found your blog and I went back to when you first started and I am working my way forward. I agree with everyone, you are amazing and truly talented.

  13. Keep your eye on the finish line! When those bookcases are done, and you stand back and admire your work, it will all be worth it. Turn on some music to help you along. Time goes pretty fast when you’re listening to your fav tunes and singing out loud!

  14. I LOVE this project!! Can you detail more information about the lights in the bookcase, where did you find them? how much?