Add a personal touch to the shelves in your home without breaking out the paint by covering the shelves with fabric. Covering your shelves with fabric allows you to decorate the shelves with a design in much less time than it would take to do the same with paint. Fabric-covered shelves also allow you to make use of larger scraps of fabric you may have left over from home decor sewing projects you completed for the same room the shelves are in.
Measure and the depth and width of the top of the shelf, the height and width of the front edge and the depth and width of the bottom of the shelf.
Sand the top, bottom and front edge of the shelf with low-grit sandpaper -- just enough to remove the smooth surface so the découpage medium can adhere to the top of the shelf. Brush away any resulting dust.
Measure and cut a piece of fabric to the width and depth of the top, the height and width of the front edge and the width and depth of the bottom of the shelf.
Paint a layer of découpage medium onto the top, bottom and front edge of the shelf with a foam brush.
Place the corresponding fabric pieces on the top, front edge and bottom of the shelf. Smooth the fabric out with your hands to remove any air bubbles between the fabric and the shelf. Let the découpage medium dry for 2 hours.
Paint another layer of découpage medium over the top, front edge and bottom of the shelf of the shelf to seal the fabric to the shelf. Let the découpage medium dry for 24 hours before playing anything on the shelf.