Chalk Paint Remodel-1970’s Built in Shelves & Fireplace

pin ad 2


Thanks for stopping by!! I’m Shanna-Kaye, wife-mom-DIY’er-photographer-and lover of all things turquoise!

This project has been on my to-do list since we moved in, 3 years ago. My husband and I bought a 1970’s house that had huge built-in-shelving on both sides of the fireplace…and I immediately thought they would look fabulous painted. Funny how long it takes to start a project!! For at least a year my husband’s framed print of Nathan Bedford Forrest hung over the wall-and while it’s a neat piece, it doesn’t say bold, bright, or feminine 😉



We stored my son’s baby toys under one side of the shelves for a while…tacking up a blanket to keep it covered. Originally it was built to hold a huge TV on the floor (think 1970’s!) The wood was stained super dark-and had gold pulls and a gold mesh on the shelves.

The brick was an ugly yellow-ish and brown-ish color-that looked like it was mixed with soot. I searched ALL over Pinterest for ideas on painting over the nasty brick and shelving…and found a few tutorials, but none that sounded easy and were bold colored.





As you can see-the right side of the shelving became the “catch all the DIY projects” pile. It stayed cluttered for 2+ years… Ugh!! When something isn’t pretty-it’s hard to stay motivated for it to be clean.



The toys got moved, and my fabric stash and sewing machine found a new home here……and this was right before I started!

One day I decided to just go for it.


I had just found Vintage Farmhouse #1 Paints thru a photography client-and had used it to paint a few small nightstands.

I was in LOVE-and they had the perfect turquoise color.

—If your local to East Texas, you can contact Shelley and pick up the paint with Vintage 8 Decor!

I picked up a few large Mason jars of paint in Tyler, and started painting.

Colors: For the Shelves I used MILK PAIL. For the Brick I used DAIRY CREAM.   (click the link to find her shop on Etsy!)

I ended up putting a double coat on both the brick and shelving-and used 2+ of the largest jars they sell….the project ended up costing ~$125-$150 for all my supplies.


The awesome thing about chalk paint is you don’t HAVE to prime. I’m a lazy painter. There, I said it! I don’t like prep work….so I wiped down the surfaces, scrubbed the brick a bit to get grit off-and then painted a layer of Polyurthane on the brick before painting. This helped seal the brick some-I know there are probably other ways to get a smoother look (like using primer or a filler)…but I didn’t want to head to the store so I just started painting!


I used a 2.5 inch brush, and painted. And painted. And painted. It took 3 days (spread out over a week) to get it all done-and my husband helped me with the top half of the fireplace since I’m not that tall 😉


We are pretty silly….the great thing about chalk paint is there is little to no smell, so you don’t get the crazy paint headache like regular paint!!


I can’t tell you how EXCITED I was to get this project finished. I could barely wait for the paint to dry so I could hang my new photo of my babies over the mantel.


And here is the FINAL product!! As you can see-I LOVE bold and bright things. The table is painted with regular Valspar paint-and as a result, it is peeling off and will need to be repainted eventually. But it adds a pop of color that everyone loves. The pink chair and coral nightstand are chalk painted as well-and so is the frame on the fireplace.

We also replaced our ceiling place with a free one from my Inlaws-the old one had been there since the house was built and my husband had broke off 2 of the blades 😉



Once I had the front of the doors painted, I used sandpaper to distress the edges. I then pulled off the gold metal mesh, laid a piece of burlap over it…and nailed it back. I was going to paint the knobs, but once I saw it with the newly painted front I fell in love!


Then came the decorating! I’m a professional newborn and children’s photographer-and collect vintage cameras-so this side is full of my cameras and photos of our family. DSC_9424DSC_9427DSC_9425DSC_9433

This is painted with the MILK PAIL paint as well-I found this gem at a yard sale for $5. It was ugly, painted black in some spots…and made the perfect vintage piece!

I repurposed the lamp shade to match with my curtain on my front door-and found the box and frame from Tuesday Morning.


This is a $7 nightstand painted with COTTEN SHEETS chalk paint-and I love the detail on it! The frame is painted with MILK PAIL-a $2 frame from a yard sale.

The lamp was free from a friend…she planned to throw it away but my husband took 5 seconds and fixed it when I brought it home! DSC_9421pin ad


Thanks for reading-I would LOVE to get this project all over pinterest so others can be inspired with their 1970’s homes as well!

Feel free to ask any questions or leave a comment below-thanks y’all!


Shanna-Kaye Fancher

[powr-hit-counter label=”Enter a Label”]

0 0 votes
Article Rating
Notify of

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments