My apartment is tiny, but this shelf is the perfect size! See how I DIYed a vintage telephone table for 1/2 the price of Urban Outfitters Mini Storage Rack!

DIY Urban Outfitters Mini Storage Rack Makeover

Our combo living room/dining room is short on space, but we still need places to set drinks and books and whatnot. I’ve been on the hunt for a while for something small to put on the left side of our couch, but most side tables I’ve found are just too bulky for the space. We’ve ended up using this little Ikea plant stand as a spot for the boyfriend to set things (he always seems to sit on that side of the couch) but looks-wise, it left a lot to be desired, so I’ve been wanting something else.

DIY Urban Outfitters side table
The epitome of utilitarian.

Flashback to last winter: I was brainstorming furniture and decor for our new place (on Pinterest of course) and I pinned this cute little Urban Outfitters mini storage rack.

Urban Outfitters Mini Storage Rack
Urban Outfitters “Mini Storage Rack” $39

I liked the shape and color, but wasn’t willing to shell out $40 for it at the time. I subsequently forgot about it (and they’ve since sold out of this color). A couple months back though, my mom and sister were in Portland for a visit, and we visited House of Vintage, a big local consignment/vintage shop.

Imagine my excitement when I came across this cute little shelf for half the price of the UO version! For $20, I was sold! The stand was a dingy and chipped brass color, but the size and shape were so charming, and I loved the perforated hexagon pattern even more than the wire mesh of the UO version!

ashleymacq_vintage_tableMy mom explained that this was actually a vintage telephone stand. Back in the days of landline phones, you would have put your telephone on top, a notepad on the small compartment underneath, and your phone books on the bottom. While I certainly remember the days before cell phones, this little stand’s previous purpose never would have occurred to me!

I took it home and used it as-is for a few weeks before I finally got around to painting it. I decided to go with yellow for a fun punch of color, and to tie in with some of the other yellow accessories in our living room.


Two quick coats of spray paint later and we were in business! Here it is in our living room now.
ashleymacq_side_tableIt’s the perfect size for a drink or a book without taking up too much space. It’s even given a new home to a few of my favorite graphic novels – though magazines or records would fit perfectly there too. I really couldn’t be happier with this little thrifted find!

ashleymacq_side_table_booksWhile I do like Urban Outfitters stuff, so much of it is based on real vintage pieces that can be found for less money with just a bit of hunting. I’ve seen other stands very similar to this on ebay and Craigslist for about what I paid. I don’t know about you, but I’d so prefer to hunt down an authentically vintage piece (or stumble upon one accidentally, like I did in this case) and give it a quick coat of paint, than pay twice as much for a reproduction!

*Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links, which means I might receive a few cents if you make a purchase using them. However, all recommendations are my own. I only recommend products I like and/or use myself, regardless of possible compensation. 


  1. […] She describes the whole process on her personal blog, helpfully named ““. […]

  2. Love this! It’s so creative and it looks exactly like the UO one. Good work! Thanks for sharing! Xo, M&K at

    1. Thanks M&K! I love your blog! Some really cool projects 🙂

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