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Old Bookcase into Sofa Table!

Childproofing in Style, Possible?
The term "childproofing" may bring to mind images of a house full of foam padding on every remotely sharp surface, more short metal gates than at the horse races, and everything below a height of six feet firmly super glued to the floor.

That's basically what I imagined as we entered parenthood 10 months ago. Yes, my Munchkin is 10 months old now. I can't believe it!!
He started out so small!

It was great, and I thought I had this parenting thing down. Everything was going fine, that is, until he learned to move.
Once he picked up that annoying habit, my home slowly evolved from a beautiful showcase of my most treasured accessories, to something more resembling the McDonald's Play Place, fully able to be hosed down each night.
(duh my son speaks in LolCats)

I was forced to snatch my lovely things from display and either pack them away or stow them so high only the house flies could appreciate them.

We've done little things along the way, like adding outlet safety plugs, a baby gate in front of the stairs, and Scotch Garding the couch. We've done our best to embrace our new lifestyle of, "don't you dare leave your cell phone on the coffee table, Andrew will eat it!!"

Our electronics- remotes, phones, wireless keyboard, etc. were slowly retreating to higher and higher ground as Andrew became better and better at reaching them. It got to a point last week where I was literally holding them above my head just to keep them out of his reach. I needed to do something, STAT.

Ever since I saw Young House Love's behind-the-sofa console table, I've been totally inspired by Sheri's awesome handiwork. Way to knock out extra storage space plus a baby keep-away area in one shot!

Just beautiful. Hand stained wood with a bit of a rough, eclectic vibe. I would have loved to make one myself, all pretty and hand stained and all. But I was in a hurry. That was the morning my coffee and cereal bowl were perched high above my head as I locked eyes with Destructo my sweet little boy and I knew something had to be done, pronto.

I headed for the garage, not knowing exactly what I was looking for, any kind of board, flat surface, or object that I could nail to the wall and get my stuff out of the Little Dude's reach! There, standing in the far corner of the garage was our old bookcase, dusty and waiting for dump day.


Tale of The Velveteen Bookcase
When we did our living room makeover, this bookcase was one thing that didn't make it back into the room.
I had it in my bedroom growing up and it came with me when I got married (does that technically count as my dowry?) It's your average, low cost, particle board bookcase, and had served its purpose faithfully for a long time!

After moving it out of the room to paint, we could see it was definitely showing it's age, saggy shelves, holes in the back, basically falling apart.

It would have been firewood. But, today was it's lucky day.

As I maneuvered it back out of the garage and into the house, I could almost feel it shudder with pleasure at a familiar touch. You could almost hear it squeal, "she still loves me!", very Velveteen Rabbit like.

Yes, I've come for you, old friend, uh, I mean furniture. I brought it into the living room, removed all the shelves and metal shelf inserts (major choking hazard!) and flipped it on its side.
I scooted it behind the couch, still not sure exactly how this was going to pan out. I pushed the bookcase and couch against the wall and put all of Andrew's "no no's" on top.
The bookcase is about 8" wide. It's really the perfect width, because it doesn't push the couch too far into the room, and still gives us enough surface area to stash all our keep away items. 
The height is about 4" below the back of the couch. Shorter than I thought I wanted, but it actually worked out too.

After I put the things on the ledge, and stood at the other end of the living room to evaluate my new sofa table, I realized I couldn't see the bookcase or the stuff at all! It looked like the couch was pushed right up against the wall. There were NO piles of stuff peeking out from behind! something I hadn't really considered before. The shelf is low enough to hide all our Andrew no-no items.

(can't see it, but it's there!)

I LOVE that happy accident! It may not be the ideal or nicest solution to my problems, but it worked out perfectly, with stuff I had on hand and for FREE. Maybe someday I'll get to bust out my wood stain and go at it the proper, non particle board way.

As for now, we are loving our new instant childproof invisible diy sofa table. It's easy enough to scoop up all the electronics after we finish our Star Trek Voyager for the night and put them in the baskets and bowls up on the ledge. Faithful bookcase, you serve me well.

FUN FACT: that's right, I said Star Trek Voyager. As in 1995. We are hopeless Trekkie fans. Live long and prosper, yo.

And let's just hope Andrew doesn't learn to climb any time soon...

Have you found any other creative ways to use old bookcases? or other old furniture pieces? Gotta love recycling. Yes ma'am, we done good here today.
<3 Alyssa

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