Boho Bookends as Botanical Home Decor

Boho Bookends as Botanical Home Decor

A pair of plain wooden bookends at the thrift store is ALWAYS going to catch my eye. I mean, a plain wooden ANYTHING will do the same- let’s be honest. But this pair grabbed my attention recently and today I’m transforming them into boho bookends with some botanical flair.

wooden bookends

My plan was to paint them (of course) and use a Monstera leaf stencil on them for a modern look with a little pizzazz.

boho makeover on wooden bookends

But not just pizzazz on the outside- I wanted to add some on the inside, too. Not sure what I mean? Well, I hope you’ll keep reading because I’m about to show you!

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Upcycling a Set of Wooden Bookends

First things first, I needed to paint the bookends. Well, a thorough wipe down first because they were pretty dusty.

But then paint. And because I was looking for a botanical look, I grabbed some green paint from the garage.

painting the wooden bookends

But it was the wrong green. Utterly and completely wrong. Too yellow, too warm for the look I was going for.

green bookends for botanical home decor

So, I went in search of a replacement color and found this shade by Wise Owl Paint. Ironically called “Botanical”, too, so I knew it was meant to be.

It was exactly the shade I had envisioned in my mind.

wise owl chalk paint in botanical

Now, remember when I alluded to adding some pizzazz to the inside of the bookends? Well, I painted the inside a matte gold.

painting the inside of boho bookends

And by “inside”, I mean the part that will touch the books that they’re holding up.

A Monstera Leaf Stencil for Boho Bookends

Now, to really make my boho bookends pop, I used two sizes of the same stencil. A Monstera leaf stencil since it’s such a popular plant right now!

monstera leaf stencil

And an FYI- these stencils in particular are no longer available unfortunately. But it looks like plenty of alternative versions are available online here.

My plan? To stencil with gold on the green and to stencil with green on the gold! Like a photo negative.

Which is what I did, starting with a smaller Monstera leaf in matte gold on the front of each green bookend.

monstera leaf stencil on boho bookends

It looked fabulous! Because I opted to not sand the green paint, it had a velvety surface that resulted in very clean stenciling!

Next, I used the largest leaf stencil on the interior gold surface, using the Wise Owl green paint! Almost like a photo negative, inside and outside.

monstera leaf decor

Last but not least, I needed to add a topcoat to my boho bookends. I buffed on my favorite clear wax until they were buttery smooth, and that was it!

clear wax to seal the wise owl paint

Boho Bookends as Botanical Home Decor

And with that, they were done and ready to be used with my books. Aren’t they pretty?

boho bookends

It’s a simple and straightforward makeover, which I try not to bore you with too often. But I love the photo negative effect by using the two paint colors like that.

Just a little extra pizzazz that you see whenever you remove a book that they’re holding up.

monstera leaf decor for a boho home

Also of note, I’ve been really enjoying looking through the interior design books in that above photo. I’m drawing inspiration from them (especially “Habitat”) for our new home that’s under construction. Obviously, most of what I’ll end up with is thrifted or consigned versions of inspiration photos!

For even more botanical home decor ideas, you may also be interested in this “Thrift the Look” challenge that my blogging friends and I did, too!

Botanical decor

And for even more DIY Boho decor ideas, this collection is FULL of inspiration!

Bohemian style decor and upcycling projects for boho decor on a budget

Craft on!


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bohemian home decor with boho bookends

botanical home decor

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Sarah Ramberg is the owner of Sadie Seasongoods, a website that celebrates all things secondhand. From upcycling ideas and thrifted decor to vintage-centric travel itineraries, Sadie Seasongoods is a one-stop shop for anyone who loves thrifting and approachable repurposing ideas. Sarah is also the author of “Crafting with Flannel” and has been featured in numerous media outlets and magazines.


  1. Annette Wells says

    Where do you purchase the Soft Wax? I can’t seem to find it anywhere. Thank you.

    • Sadie Seasongoods says

      I bought it at a furniture painting store about 8 years ago or so. If you want Annie Sloan (the brand of mine), you just need to search for Annie Sloan stockists in your area. But there are other brands that are more universally available at craft stores; I just can’t speak to their quality.

  2. Allthough BOHO isn’t my style, I really liked your project. I’d have them holding up a collection of my gardening books in no time flat! I love bookends but have so many books, i usually cram the shelf in tightly with them all. Take my TV, don’t ever try to take my books!

  3. Rebecca Payne says

    I love these. Great job!

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