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Before and After

  • Turquoise & Pink Hexagon End Tables - Before & AfterKaren selected these hexagon end tables to be painted, glazed, and distressed in turquoise and pink, with heavy Black Glaze. The original pulls were also spray painted pink.

    For more inspiration, visit our End Tables Collection.


  • Earlier this summer, I discovered this awesome buffet at a local thrift store.  Our friends Ryan & Andrea were kind to let us store it in their garage.  I was very excited about it’s potential as a flat screen TV stand–and so were they!

    They decided to make it their own, requesting an antiqued white finish.  All the molding and detail, when distressed, looked great with that finish!  The original pulls added so much to the look of this piece.  Yet with one broken, they opted for knobs on the middle doors.

    I love what paint, glaze and distressing can do to old pieces like this!  For more ideas on what can be done with dated furniture, visit our DIY Inspiration album.

    You can also find us on Pinterest!

  • Chunky Vintage Dresser in Antiqued White from Facelift FurnitureVintage Chunky Dresser ~ in Antiqued White with Tea Stain Glaze.

    One of the things I like most about refinishing furniture with paint and glaze is seeing how an ugly dresser like this can be transformed into a beautiful and prized piece. With all it’s molding, and very solid construction, there was tons of potential beyond this dated appearance.

    The dresser was painted antiqued white, distressed, and then tea-stained glaze was applied to provide the off-white, antiqued look.

    Antiqued White Chunky Vintage Dresser Before & After
  • Sea Blue Nightstand Before & AfterWhen Taylor purchased a Sea Blue six drawer dresser, she wanted a nightstand with the same color and sun-washed white glaze.  She chose this nightstand, which is from the Nine Needing a New Look group

    This nightstand took on a whole new life with it’s new color!  And the white glaze did a great job of accenting the molding and spindles on the doors. The original knobs and hinges were kept on the nightstand.



    There are just two to go in the Nine Needing a New Look series!  I’ll be featuring the vintage nightstand tomorrow, and it will highlight yet another color option different from those below.  To see all the previous transformations, go HERE.

  • Hutch Repurposed Into Bookshelf - Before & AfterI nearly threw this one away. As a dated hutch with no matching base cabinet, there seemed no good use. Just taking up space, I finally set by our curb for trash pick up–from the photo, you can probably see why!

    I did salvage some hardware and even small cabinet doors for future creative use. As I removed those items, I noticed how the piece was made of solid wood.

    So….I couldn’t resist, and started wondering if there was any hope of converting this into a usable piece. Before I knew it, it was off the curb, back on my driveway. I pulled out my circular saw. I began to see potential for a bookshelf, but there some issues with reaching that destination.

    First, the legs which held the hutch up on it’s previous matching cabinet. Those had to go, and I removed them with my circular saw, downsizing the piece in height. The thin press board backing was still in good enough shape to use again, so I also cut it down to size.

    Next, I had to deal with the middle support running up the front side of the hutch. In the shelf area, that wood rod went up through the front edge of the second shelf, creating a square sized hole when removed. I pulled out the Durham’s Water Putty, and filled in what was missing there, as well as in holes where previous hardware had been. I also filled in a gash to the press board backing

    Hutch to Bookshelf Before

    Next came priming the shelf. One of the greatest discoveries I made when learning how to paint furniture is Zinsser Bulls Eye primer. It’s water based, and sticks to almost anything–even glossy surfaces. I still sand those kind of surfaces lightly with a medium grit sanding sponge. But after vacuuming (shop vac) and then cleaning, the piece is ready to go.

    Being water based, the primer dries fast. After an hour, it can be recoated. If a white finish with tea-stained glaze is my final goal, I’ll often apply two coats of Zinsser primer and hour apart. Then another hour later, I’ll apply the white latex paint. It’s great, because I can get 3 coats on within 3 hours (latex requires 4 hours dry time between coats, so I just do one coat of latex on top of 2 coats of primer).

    Then typically, I’ll wait a day to apply a finish such as tea-stained glaze. I’ll then wait another day to apply polyurethane. I use Zinnser’s water base poly, which just requires 2 hours dry time for recoating.

    Hutch Bookshelf After FLF

  • I am about start on this retro, vintage style cabinet.  I see flat screen TV stand written all over it.  The backside is finished as well, so would also make a great room divider piece.  Really, a lot of options (entry piece, small buffet, playroom cabinet & toy storage). 
    For entertainment stand purposes, a plus is the two open lower shelves, making electronic accessories use easy (cords and all).  The top drawer and side cabinets with shelves provide great storage as well.  There is even a shelf that slides out form the right underneath the top surface.  Umm…maybe a great place to set the popcorn! 🙂

    UPDATE:  Thanks to Jenn for puchasing this for custom painting!

  • In our recent series titled Nine Needing a New Look, we’ve seen what can happen when great paint colors transform dated and even ugly furniture.  To take a look back at the five pieces that have been upcycled so far, go here.
    Soon after the first post of this series, Susan emailed me and requested to have the top middle maple end table custom painted.  She hand picked her paint color from Lowe’s, and chose Valspar “Imperial Yellow.”  Susan’s table selection is now featured as the sixth in this series. 
    I’ve never painted furniture such a bright yellow, and have to admit I was a bit sceptical.  After distressing and applying tea-stained glaze to it, I was sold!
    Susan chose distressed yellow with tea-stained glaze to create a statement piece.  I think she chose well, and look forward to painting another end table this cheery color.

    This series is also featured on our Facebook page in a before and after album titled Nine Needing a New Look.  It can be viewed by clicking HERE (no Facebook account required).
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