DIY Romantic Industrial Shelves From Curb Side Find

Hi All!

This week I am back with another addition of Curb Alert!  This time I came across an old tin garage shelf sitting in a neighbors driveway.  After driving past it for days and dreaming of ways to give it a makeover, I stopped and asked my neighbor if he would be interested in selling it.  He told me he was planning on throwing it out and I could have it.  I was excited to land such an awesome piece and he was excited because he didn’t have to pay the dump fees.  Proof that sometime it pays to be a little brazen.

Here is what the shelf looked like after I dragged it home.   It was in pretty rough shape and the bottom shelf was completely rusted through and unsalvageable. I  had to use a pair of tin snips (affiliate) to cut it off the frame.  After I finished disassembling the shelf I used 100 grit sandpaper to smooth out and remove the rust build up and chipped paint.

Next I washed everything with a Dawn soap solution to remove any remaining grease that may interfere with new paint.  Once it was thoroughly cleaned and towel dried I primed my shelf using a can of black paint I had left over from an old project.  Then I used a top coat of Rust-oleum Metallic Flat Soft Iron spray paint (affiliate).   I highly recommend priming your surface when using any kind of metallic spray paint because the paint does not cover as well as traditional spray paint. In the end it will save you a lot of time, money, and frustration.

To keep with my Romantic Industrial theme I covered the existing weakened tin shelves with some reclaimed fence boards.   To help me prepare for the this step I had a friend help me out by squaring up my old fence boards using his table saw.  After they were all square I made the reaming cuts with my Ryobi Skill Saw (affiliate).  Then I finished them by rounding the corners and sanding away any splinters using a pad sander.

After removing all the dust with a tack cloth I attached the boards to my shelves using a tube of Liquid Nails glue and then added weight to each self ensuring a strong bond between the boards and the metal.  After letting the glue set for 24 hours I sealed my boards using two coats of  Rust-oleum quick dry clear matte polyurethane.  If you haven’t tried this product yet, I highly recommend it. It is a low odor, water based polyurethane that dries in half the time of it’s oil based counterpart.

After a short dry time the only thing left to do was resemble my shelves and layer in some beautiful accessories!

One of my favorite pieces on this shelf is this beautiful vintage frame with my parents wedding photo.  It was one of my favorite pieces as a kid.  Having it displayed on the shelf always reminds me, no matter how far away we may live from our families they are never too far away.

I’m so happy with the way the shelf makeover turned out.  It was the perfect piece for our living room and a great way to pull together our Romantic Industrial theme.  Do you have any curb alert pieces that you love?  Tell us about them in the comments below!

Disclaimer:  This page and post contains affiliate links and pay per click advertising.  I only bring you companies and brands that I happily use in my home.  Should you choose to purchase an item from one of these adds you will not be charged extra by buying through one of these links. They exist simply to continue to bring you great DIY projects.  For a full list of disclosures please visit our policy page.

Shop my styleIf you loved the look of my Romantic Industrial Shelves then here are are few options that have a similar look and feel!

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31 thoughts on “DIY Romantic Industrial Shelves From Curb Side Find

  1. Cat!!!! This is amazing! I actually gasped when I saw the before! I swear to you that I have some of these out in the old garage, but I could never make them look that great! Well done!

    1. Awww, thank you so much Karen! That really made my morning! You are an amazing DIYer, I know you could make those shelves stunning! Lots of love!


  2. These shelves look great, Cat! I love the texture and warmth of the wood against the metal of the shelves! Thanks for the metallic paint tip! I’m getting ready to use some metallic paint, and I’m always happy to avoid added frustration. :0)

  3. This turned out amazing! I am not sure I would have seen the possibilities you did, now I will be looking at the shelves like this a lot different. Thanks for the idea!

  4. Gorgeous!!! doesn’t even look the same.

    liz jo @ <a href=>sundays with sophie</a>

  5. This turned out great! I love the look and you’ve styled it perfectly! I love your work! I’d be honored if you’d share some of your projects on my Making Broken Beautiful party. It begins tonight 6:00pm (MST) and goes until Saturday evening. I hope you will join in!

    Have a great day!

  6. This is the neatest thing I have seen in a long time. What a way to take something so old and junky and make it new again. I hope you showed your neighbor the after results too. They would be amazed.

    Thank you for sharing at The Creative Corner. I can’t wait to see what you share next week too.

    1. Aww thank you! I did show them, and he was very impressed! It was kind of neat to see his reaction because he definitely thought I was nuts in the beginning!

  7. I’m so in need of some shelves and wanted industrial looking ones. I love how you transformed this one into something that looks as pricey as the ones in the store!

    1. Thank you Jamie!!! I priced a set of shelves that were similar to this and I couldn’t believe what they cost! It’s amazing how much money is spent on recreating upcycled items! Thank you for stopping by Jamie!!

  8. What an awesome transformation! It’s a great accent piece for sure. Thanks so much for sharing with us at Merry Monday:-)

  9. Cat, you did a fantastic job refinishing and styling this old metal shelving. I can hardly believe the before. What a great idea to use old fence pickets for the wood. The contrast of the texture of the wood against the metal looks awesome.

  10. This turned out SO nicely! I have one of those shelves in my basement from the previous owners. I love the addition of the plank shelves! Awesome transformation! Thanks for linking to FF!

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