Vintage to Modern Painted Nightstand Makeover

By on November 4, 2014

Vintage to Modern Painted Nightstand MakeoverA few weeks ago, I picked up a really cool vintage coffee table and two end tables super cheap. If you were a kid in the 80’s like I was, I’m sure you remember these pieces. I had this exact same set in my house growing up, in fact, I still remember playing hide-and-seek with my brother and being able to fit in the nightstand cabinet with ease. What can I say, I was a master at hiding.

I already turned the coffee table into a TV and storage cabinet for my daughter’s playroom with a fun turquoise finish, but the two end tables had a different destiny. They are fairly oversized in nature and of course have that vintage vibe to them and all that fun carving on the front. I have two different projects for each of these nightstands, but let’s get started with the first one shall we?

Check out this lovely nightstand. It’s definitely vintage, but wow is it sturdy! These pieces were built to last back then and this certainly has. No, it’s not solid wood. In fact if this was made today, you’d probably find it on a clearance shelf at Walmart, but it’s vintage, so I’m rolling with it.

Vintage Nightstand

My son has been in desperate need of a nightstand for his room. Honestly, I’m tired of walking in his room and stepping on all of his video games sitting next to his bed or knocking over glasses of water when I come to put laundry away. When I first showed this to my 17 year old son, I was immediately shot down and told there was no way he would put something so old and junky and also very girly into his room. You know how teen age boys are don’t you? His room is currently done in a more modern feel with lots of black and silver glass and he has this bedding in his room that is done in navy blue and white.

Of course, the first thing I had to do is remove all the hardware and the doors and give this little nightstand a good wipe down to get rid of the cobwebs. Then it was out to the yard to get the first treatment. The inside was pretty much like the outside…brown. To give it a more modern feel and make it easy to wipe down on the inside, I used a gloss black spray by Painter’s Touch, all over the inside as well as the bottom skirting of the nightstand.

I use Painter’s Touch almost exclusively when it comes to spray painting furniture simply because when it comes to spray paint, you get what you pay for. The quality is excellent, I get fantastic coverage and my hands are not cramped into disfigured claws by the time I’m finished.

Nightstand Makeover

While the spray paint was drying, I got out my trusty hardware spray paint box and gave all of the hardware a lovely coat of metallic silver paint. If you don’t typically paint the hardware on your furniture pieces, I highly recommend giving it a try. It’s amazing how just painting the hardware can really change the feel of a piece of furniture and will also save you $money$ from not having to buy all new hardware.

Nightstand Hardware

Once the black paint was dry it was time to give the rest of the nightstand a coat of the navy blue I picked out to match my son’s room. Yes of course, I did mix the blue with some plaster of paris to make my homemade chalk paint. If the top hadn’t been so scratched up I may have just done a coat of regular paint, but I’ve worked with chalk paint quite a bit and I know how well it can hide imperfections in finishes, so it really was the perfect type of paint to use for this project.

Nightstand Makeover

Because I wasn’t going to be distressing this piece, I did decide to go ahead and do a full two coats of paint on the nightstand to ensure it received full coverage and had a classic yet modern feel to it. Without doing any sanding at all, I then applied a thin clear coat wax over all of the blue painted areas of the nightstand.

Once it was all dry, it was time to put this baby back together. I started attaching the hardware and as soon as I saw the silver hardware against the blue, I was in love. Seriously, the color combination couldn’t be more perfect for my son’s room.

Vintage Nightstand Hardware

As you can see, the final project is no longer junky or even girly. Even my son agreed he “may” have been wrong. Imagine that!

Vintage to Modern Painted Nightstand Makeover

What do you think of the final project? I think it’s perfect for a teenage boy!


About Misty Spears

I absolutely love all things DIY, especially when it comes to decorating my own home. I’m a thrift store junkie and my head just explodes with ideas to repurpose old junk into something practical and beautiful when I come across that perfect treasure. I’m a wood furniture rebel and try to paint every surface I can to bring color into my life. My life revolves around my family and enjoying every moment that life serves up to me. You can connect with me on Twitter @diyhomeinterior, Instagram @mistyspears and see my pins on Pinterest for a sneak peak into all the DIY projects I am working on and crazy life happenings.


  1. Tamala

    November 4, 2014 at 6:37 pm

    I think this may be my favorite piece!! This is so lovely and I love that the furniture that was made back in the day was so sturdy!!! My mom has these iron chairs … for nearly thirty years and we just had to change the cushions because they were really built to last. love them

    • Misty Spears

      November 11, 2014 at 4:43 pm

      Same here. They sure don’t build furniture like they used to do they?

  2. Jenn Alex Brockman

    November 4, 2014 at 10:17 pm

    I like it! I’d love to see one of these in white with some charcoal gray or black “antiquing” around those details.

    • Misty Spears

      November 11, 2014 at 4:44 pm

      I have one more nightstand left to do…I won’t be doing it exactly in the colors you mentioned, but I do have a slightly more girly rendition of it happening. I think you will like it, especially with the “antiquing” I will be doing on the details. :)

  3. Cynthia Dixon

    November 6, 2014 at 3:32 pm

    You certainly can do some amazing things with furniture lady! How did you get involved for redoing furniture? It really does show that you enjoy it.

    Great job!

    • Misty Spears

      November 11, 2014 at 4:46 pm

      Honestly, being broke. LOL I’ve never had a ton of money to spend on decorating, so I became a thrift store junkie and started refinishing and painting furniture, even repurposing items into other uses. I also hate to see things go to waste so if I can fix something up, it just makes me feel better.

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