Before & After: From Drab Desk to Painted Vanity

published Nov 3, 2015
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(Image credit: Submitted by Lauren)

I was “gifted” this really simple, but classic desk from my boyfriend to use as a makeup table/vanity. While I loved the character, the desk was pretty beat up. There were imprints and scratches on the top and the knobs mismatched. I decided to take on my first larger project in my new apartment and paint the desk an awesome shade of teal gray. Not knowing a whole lot about furniture repainting, I researched a couple of different blogs and home repair sites to see what kind of tools I would need and how complicated this project would be. Turns out, it was really easy!

(Image credit: Submitted by Lauren)

The original desk was definitely in need of a good sanding. I found my paint at my local True Value, I opted for a chalky green/gray that would go with a lot of different color combinations. (True Value in Fresh Meadow). Because of the drying time, this desk took me three complete days to finish, and was probably 5-6 hours of work total, including shopping.

What you need:

  • Paint (Any kind will do, but go for satin or a gloss in between a satin and a matte–a matte will show every crack/error)
  • Primer (Just ask your hardware store for a cheap recommendation)
  • Sandpaper or an electric sander
  • Two to three large foam rollers
  • One small foam roller (optional)
  • Paint brush (For smaller areas and trim)
  • Knobs (Optional if you’re replacing these)

An alternative to finding and purchasing knobs from a home or hardware store is to spray paint the existing knobs a shiny metallic or black matte.

Thank you, Lauren! You can read more about this project on Lauren’s blog The Life Styled.