Furniture Makeovers: 10 Before & After Projects

Furniture Makeovers: 10 Before & After Projects

Janel Laban
Jun 14, 2011

As we focus in on furniture choices this June, it bears repeating that often the best "new" furniture solution is a rethink of the furniture you already own — no one can argue that keeping pieces out of landfill while giving them a second (or third) life isn't a worthwhile way to go. Sometimes a good refinish is all that is needed, but you may have a piece that is too far gone (or wasn't up to snuff to begin with) and in those cases, adding a coat of color can help; here are ten from our archives that are worth a peek.

• SHOWN ABOVE: Iris's Newly Colorful Credenza: Her trusty IKEA piece — formerly brown with glass doors — is now a colorful Knoll-inspired piece that not only hides things more successfully than the old credenza did but is a bright spot in her calm and neutral space.

Beverley's Kitchen Island: After seeing your post on DIY kitchen islands a couple of months ago, I was inspired to forego an IKEA or other pre-made solution and make something that would be unique to us.

Centsational Girl's Cabinet Transformation: Adding crown molding, priming the laminated surfaces, brightening with white paint, and coloring the interior with a small green paint sample from True Value transformed this standard shelving into something really special.

Jason's Dramatic Table Overhaul: The table itself is an affordable little occasional table I bought at about three years ago. The table's finish hasn't aged very well — it chipped off on the legs and around the edges of the top, revealing an undercoat that's much lighter than the dark finish.

Meg's Mid-Century Dresser Repainted: What you can't see is that this dresser was torn apart on top. It had gauges and scratches all over. It took a very coarse sandpaper and a thick coat of primer, but we were able to get it smooth.

Johnny's Painted Dining Chairs: While perusing Craigslist earlier this year, I came across these handsome retro chairs. The set of four was sturdy and chic, but the chippy varnish was a mess. Our painted pine floor looks lovely, I thought, so why not paint these pine chairs too?

Becki's Thrift Store Find Color Makeover: The paint color she used is Martha Stewart Milk Pail: a medium aqua blue that isn't too shocking. The finished result is such a great complement to her chocolate brown wall and white television stand, and has inspired me to find something in my own home to makeover with this pop of color.

Lindsey's Rescued Kitchen Cart: I rescued this cart from an estate sale for 25 cents. And with the help of sand paper, spray paint and barkeeper's friend I refreshed it with a new color and shiny, polished legs again.

Veronica's Dresser Turned Yellow Charmer: You know the drill. A roadside find that is just begging for a makeover, so you pull over, somehow manage to get it in the car and think to yourself--lucky find! That's exactly how Veronica came to acquire this dresser (but knew the messily applied grey enamel paint had to go).

The Dresser and the Orange Bottle : We're no strangers to saving a great piece of furniture by giving it a little love which in turn gives it a longer life. One thing we've always struggled with however, is brush strokes. For the most part we like to use a foam roller to help out with that, but there's an easier way — and it comes in a magical little orange bottle.

List originally compiled as part of our year-end review: Best of 2010

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