Before & After: Cristin’s Mod Podge Buffet Makeover

published Apr 9, 2013
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(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)

When Cristin and her husband found this dresser on the curb in their neighborhood, it quickly became apparent why no one had grabbed it first: it’s huge, heavy, and covered in dated white veneer. But with a little vision and a ton of Mod Podge, this beast became a buffet. 

(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)

From Cristin:

Last summer, while hosting a garage sale at my house, my husband came home from work and told me there was a buffet table out to the road in our neighborhood. Then he added, “I saw it on my way to work.” That was hours earlier. I thought, “it’s never going to be there!” But we gave it a shot and sure enough, there it was. When we loaded it into our minivan, we came to understand why no one else took it. It was a million pounds and so long that it was hanging out of our van. Oh, and one other thing, it was ugly, chipped white veneer. The best solution–cover it with fabric!

This project is featured in Cristin’s new book, Living Simple, Free & Happy: How to Simplify, Declutter Your Home, and Reduce Stress, Debt & Waste. She and her husband managed to furnish their home with found items that she refinished on the cheap (and used the savings to pay off their mortgage in under 7 years!). Cristin shares her top tips for working with Mod Podge:

1. Starting with a piece of furniture with square corners, rather than beveled edges, is best for Mod Podging because the application is like wrapping a present. 
2. Measure and cut and test your pieces before you even unscrew the lid to the Mod Podge.
3. Mod Podging a piece of this size is best done with two people. Especially the top. That was done with a single piece of fabric so my son and I poured and spread the Mod Podge on the top (matte) then lowered the fabric down with each of us pulling two corners.
4. Because Mod Podge can dry rather quick, I brought my project inside so the heat and wind wouldn’t accelerate the drying process. I wanted to have as much time as possible to smooth the fabric out.
5.  I used a liberal amount of Mod Podge around the underside of the buffet top, but I also hammered one tiny fabric tack into the underside of each corner.

Thanks, Cristin!

(Images: Cristin Frank)