Friday, October 14, 2011

A Different Kind of Entertainment

Almost three months ago, I received an e-mail out-of-the-blue from a sweet woman named Joy. Joy “knew” me from my blog, and she said she had an oak entertainment armoire she was willing to give me if I thought I could do something with it (she had been unable to sell it).

Umm…free furniture? Yes, please!

CWTS

Yep, that was three months ago. Even though I knew almost immediately what I wanted to do with it, it was a BIG project (the armoire is over 7 feet tall), and it took a lot to get me motivated to tackle it (enter Crafting with the Stars, Round 2).

Of course, the reason these entertainment centers are virtually unsaleable is that the new TVs don’t fit in the same spaces. So here you have a perfectly good piece of solid wood furniture with beautiful moldings, lights, and leaded glass panels, and no one wants it.

Well, I thought, what if it housed a different kind of entertainment?

I envisioned this armoire repurposed as a sewing cabinet, or maybe one which would house a computer (those are two of my favorite forms of entertainment at least).

The first step was to build a big box that would fill the open space in the armoire. I had a friend help me (OK, it was really the other way around…WAY around) with this part. The idea was to have a pull-out shelf at working height, so all the other measurements were secondary to that.

CWTS2

Look, it fits! Always such a relief.

The other “building” part of the project involved the top drawer. See all those nice plastic dividers? They were meant to hold VHS tapes—remember those?

baby 010

There were no sides for the drawer, so some spare plywood was used to create the sides and a back.

Next step was to remove the leaded glass. I wasn’t a big fan of the brassy gold trim, so I used Rub n Buff in pewter and black to stain the metal. (And my fingers.)

CWTS3

Then—I removed all the hardware for sanding, priming, and painting! Did I mention this armoire is HUGE? And I couldn’t ignore the inside of this piece. EVERY SURFACE had to be painted. That’s in addition to EVERY SURFACE of the insert!

CWTS1

The exception was the crown and base molding. My friend suggested that those be sanded down and stained dark, and of course this is a look I love. It was a MAJOR ORDEAL to sand it all down! …but I did it.

CWTS4

You may notice that I had already primed before I tackled the moldings. I covered them with plastic wrap and painter’s tape to protect them during painting.

The upper display cabinet was backed by a mirror, but Emily from Décor Chick suggested that I cover it with beadboard to cut down on funky reflections. Since I had already planned on backing the main cabinet with beadboard, it sounded great to me! Especially since then I could ignore trying to keep the mirror clean (I would never have succeeded anyway).

SewingArmoire 017

I used Liquid Nails to adhere the beadboard directly to the mirror. It helps to use a spatula tool to spread a thin, even layer over the whole back of the beadboard.

SewingArmoire 018

Then I balanced precariously on a chair and held it in place and prayed and held it in place and taped it and held it in place and prayed some more. Sorry, no pictures of that…my photographers have to go to school sometime!

I also thought a “working” armoire needed a chair to go along with it. I have three chairs in my garage that were a curbside find—would you believe they actually match my kitchen chairs??—except they’re pretty well thrashed (mine are only a little bit thrashed). But hey, that means less sanding for me!

SewingArmoire 019

I painted a chair first green (to match the insert), and then in the same creamy white as the armoire. To give the chair a little more pizzazz, I used my tried-and-true overhead projector method to paint a vintage French advertisement that says something about corsets (it appealed to my sense of humor). I got the graphic from The Graphics Fairy.

I distressed the chair to show some of the green underneath, and glazed the whole thing.

Whew! So are you ready to see the end product?

collage1Wr

Two functioning drawers, lined with a pretty botanical paper…

SewingArmoire 027

A completely extendable shelf (we used this slide from Rockler).

SewingArmoire 032

Chalkboard cupboard doors (these actually retract into the cabinet so you don’t get claustrophobic while you’re sewing/blogging). One side will be a magnet board when I can get some sheet metal cut for it.

SewingArmoire 048

A beautiful lighted display cabinet (that was fun to stage)…

SewingArmoire 035

An integrated work light and a power strip (found at Lowe’s)…

CWTS5

And of course the chair.

SewingArmoire 038

So, what do you think?

collage2

Would this be your kind of entertainment center?

IMG_3152v_1

Linking up to:
Visit thecsiproject.com

***********************************

This sewing armoire is going to be a Christmas gift for one of my dearest friends! Her husband is the one who helps me so much on my building projects, so we are making a trade!

This project has been featured at House of Hepworths and My Repurposed Life.

image

*************************************************

Linking up here, Thrifty Décor Chick’s Before & After Party, and The DIY Show Off.

77 comments:

Heavens2Betsy said...

What a fantastic transformation. It truly is beautiful. Joy obviously gifted it to the right recipient. penny

Teresa@oursoutherncountryhomeandfarm said...

Beautiful! This was very creative, and what a lucky friend you have!

Decorating with Cents said...

You did a beautiful job, very creative, I definitely like the transformation. http://decoratingwcents.blogspot.com

Jennifer Jill Araya said...

Gorgeous sewing center, Korrie! I absolutely love it. Congrats on finishing #2 again. :) I can't wait to see what you come up with next.

Lesley said...

Yeah!! That means I voted for you!!!!! :)

Twice Nice said...

Seriously my kind of cabinet! Great job! Deb

Mariaelena said...

Oh my!!!....this is gorgeous!!!...what a fab job you did...what a nice place to sew...you should be very proud!!...Mariaelena

Pamela said...

Opps! I commented on the wrong post! This is truly amazing! What a great friend you are!!

Miss Thang said...

SHUT THE FRONT DOOR! I just love this...

The Pink Flaningo(Trash to Treasure) said...

Very Creative...

pbrenner said...

That is a fabulous transformation - I am totally impressed! It looks like an incredible amount of work, but what an end result! Thank you for sharing, and likely inspiring others of us to reclaim those tired old tv cabinets :-)

Patty

Kathleen said...

you did a wonderful job on this transformation....I would love to have something like this for my computer...you have me thinking now...Glad you are in round 3...

oops! said...

My kind of entertainment center! Love Love Love it! Your so talented, and so cute!

Anonymous said...

That is simply awesome!

Kathy @ Creative Home Expressions said...

It absolutely would be my kind of entertainment center, Korrie! You've made it into a much more versatile piece and I think it turned out fantastic. Love the chair, too!

Myszka said...

You are a genius!!! This is absolutely great! And I love the idea of sewing machine inside.

Loribeth said...

This looks great! I'm thinking about painting the inside of my armoire desk and you've given me a lot of great ideas... Love the chalk board! And, of course, now you have me thinking about a chair too...

Sandi @ The Primitive Skate said...

So Beautiful! What an awesome transformation, Korrie! You are sooooo talented! Love the chair too!

Nacho said...

Okay, so my Ma has that same center and we have been trying to get her to get rid of it. As soon as I saw this I told her this is what we are going to do to hers. Great job and am happy I voted right.

Thrifty Crafty Girl said...

That is amazing! Nice job!

Marsha S said...

That is amazing! What a great piece!
You are very talented!

dmccmc18 said...

I knew by the chair that was your design. I love it very good idea.

Noreen said...

Wonderful...YOU inspire me!!!

allenaim photography and design said...

I totally voted for thone!! Love love love it!

Stephanie said...

Such an amazing makeover!! Love this! Very inspirational...looks like it took some time. So glad you shared it.

Connie @ Sensible-Redesign said...

What a beautiful job you did. I love it! It has cubbies for everything and in such pretty colors. It will be a wonderful gift. You are a very good friend to have.

Ellie's Country Accents said...

What a fantastic, beautiful job. The cabinet looks wonderful.
Ellie

Sherry@ Ties2ThePast said...

Hooray!!
I voted for you!!!
♥'s
Sherry

The Johnson Familia said...

WOW! I can NOT believe the transformation! You are surely talented! Thanks for the inspiration

www.gandcjohnson.blogspot.com

The Frosted Gardner said...

Three Words: YOU ARE AWESOME!

pasqueflower said...

LOVE, LOVE, LOVE that sewing armoire! I'm sure your friend will be thrilled to have it!

Laura at Ms. Smartie Pants said...

I love your piece and voted for you. Someone gave me a piece for free that looks almost like it. I plan to paint mine with Chalk Paint. How cool you have your own sewing space now!

Heather said...

Love it so much! What a great idea:)

Meg and Mum's said...

This is crazy gorgeous! I love your ideas! I have a very similar tv cabinet I scored dirt cheap and was wondering whether to re-hinge the doors so they opened out or keep them as sliding in (http://www.megandmums.com/2011/08/awesome-finds.html) Now that I've seen yours I know I'll leave them as is! I'm also pinning this so I can refer back to it. Thanks for the inspiration!! :)

Tracy Suzanne said...

Amazing Korrie! Looks like you worked your butt off and it was so worth it. Thanks for showing us how good a great built item can still be with a little imagination and hard work.

I'm your newest follower after seeing you on Remodelaholic. Hope you'll stop by and visit soon.

Hugs...Tracy :)

ImSoVintage said...

Korrie, I love, love, love this. I really need this. Are you sure you don't want to move next door to me?
8-)
Laura

ImSoVintage said...

oops!!! Forgot to say congrats to making it to round three. You are so very deserving.

M'Recia said...

So glad you were able to get that out of my mom's garage and make it beautiful!

Beth said...

That is just amazing! What a transformation!!

TracyMB @ Crow's Feet Chic said...

Absolutely fabulous! Lots of work, but so worth it. Your friend is going to be over the moon! :)

GGBunnie said...

BEAUTIFUL!!! I have this armoir and it is still in it's original state. The only difference being my crown and lower molding go all the way to the back of the piece. It has been used in so many places of my home. I installed shelves in it and reworked the drawer and it was in the master bedroom. It is a beauutiful piece of furniature.
My daughters are begging me to tackle this update (I am an avid seamstress.) While my son in law sighs..."NO...I am tired of moving that monster." It is a cumbersome piece.
I am smiling...it WILL be moving onto the sewing room :)
Thank you for the wonderful inspiration.
PS...At one time I too had the dining room chairs :)

Sharon @ mrs. hines class said...

I am so IMPRESSED! (and a little envious of the friend who is receiving the armoire as a gift. ) This would sooo be my kind of entertainment.

Sharon

Heather said...

I am IN LOVE with this makeover. I just love everything about it. Great work!!

Jenny @ Simcoe Street said...

This looks amazing!!!

Jenny
www.simcoestreet.blogspot.com

Melissa said...

I would LOVE something like that when we get more space. If we ever get a house, I think I will be hiring you!

Hi, I'm Suz!! said...

Oh.wow.

i.totally.love.this.

I'm now on the hunt for an entertainment center that I can do this to. What a wonderful piece of awesomeness!

Hugs ~~ Suz

Beth said...

I really need something like this for my sewing area! Does the lady that gave it to you know what you made with it? She clearly knew you'd do something amazing with it! And your friend is one lucky friend!!!

~ Laura said...

I Love this with all my heart!!! I had no idea which project was yours so I just had to go on faves....yours happened to be my top pick!! If we were limited to one project, yours was IT!!!!! It is beyond words amazing!!!!! :)

Rose @ Confessions of a Curbshopaholic said...

Wow! That is amazing. I would have taken it apart for the wood. I rally love what you did with this!

Andi @ Jane of all crafts said...

seriously korrie this is amazing!!!!!!!!!! I can't believe it's the same cabinet.

Lynn at Cottage and Creek said...

You did a super job. I can't imagine tackling a piece of furniture so BIG. I'll bet you were exhausted but oh, so satisfied.
:)Lynn

Kimberly @ The Brown Eyes Have It said...

YOU ARE AMAZING! That is an incredible redo of an armoire. You have one very lucky friend! :)

Cassie @ Primitive & Proper said...

i think this idea was so smart and resourceful! no one ever uses tv cabinets like that anymore, and using it ass a craft place is just perfect- you can hide away your mess!

Miss Charming said...

You put so much work into it but it turned out beautifully. It doesn't even look like the same piece. (Such a wonderful job!)

Jenny @ Simcoe Street said...

Lucky friend -- this is gorgeous!

Jenny
www.simcoestreet.blogspot.com

Lindsey @ Better After said...

Holy smokes Korrie, you are a refinishing rockstar! Fantastic!

A Vintage Green said...

WOW. A lot of hard work but what a great sewing/display/storage cabinet. Your friend is going to be thrilled with her gift.
- Joy

Honey at 2805 said...

Korrrie, this is a fabulous transformation! You are such a professional! How good of you to gift it to a friend!

Thank you for linking this lovely post! I appreciate you, my friend!

shabbylisaw said...

This is ahhhhmazing! I never would have thought that the before product could turn out to look so fabulous. I'd have a hard time getting rid of it. Your friend is very lucky.

Renewed Upon a Dream said...

Oh my gosh this is sooo amazing! What an excellent gift for someone! It looks like it took a lot of work, but it was well worth it. I love the windowed cubby at the top, probably my favorite part. :)

Shabby chic Sandy said...

This is so great--I would LOVE to have something like this. I would stay more than entertained with this than some silly TV (unless Nate is on of course)

Meg said...

Heck yes I want this! NOW! ;) You did a wonderful job making it into something useable and I know your friend will be thrilled to have it! It's genius and beautiful and oh my...I just can't say enough great things about it! Love it!

Proper Prim said...

WOW, that is simply gorgeous. What a sweet thing to do for your friend. That was a ton of work but so worth it. Amazing job Korrie.

Hugs, Deb

Reenie said...

WOW! You did a fantastic job on it. Love it :)

Allison @ House of Hepworths said...

I featured you today at my Hookin Up with HoH Party!

Congrats!! Feel free to stop on by and grab a button if you'd like.

xoxo

Allison @ House of Hepworths

Rhonda said...

I love it! I have an armoire that I've been unable to sell as well, and this gives me inspiration to turn in into a computer station!

Awesome - visiting from House of Hepworths...

Rhonda @ home.made.

gail said...

Korrie-amazing transformation. That was a LOT of work. I bet your friend is going to LOVE it! (who wouldn't?)
catching you this week!
gail

The LadyBugs Garden said...

This just beautiful..I love the idea..
Stephanie

Pam said...

Wow, that looks great. You did a fantastic job. Thanks for sharing.

Terri said...

WOW...what a phenomenal transformation! This turned out amazing, beautiful job!

Shelia said...

Oh my goodness, this is magnificent! You did such a wonderful job and it was free? I hope the lady who gave it to you has seen it! I'm a sewer and would love to have something so gorgeous and you can shut the doors! :) Love the pretty little lighted display behind the leaded glass! You should be so proud of yourself.
Be a sweetie,
Shelia ;)

Guerrina In CT said...

I found your link on Thrifty Decor Chick's blog and this is absolutely amazing and has solved my problem of needing a sewing cabinet! I've a smaller entertainment center that will be perfect! Thank you so much!

Anne said...

What a fabulous job you did here! I have an oak armoire that I've been wanting to paint but... now I'm all inspired :)

xox

Stephanie said...

AMAZING job! It was pure brilliance to add the work light and the slideable work surface for your sewing machine! I have my sewing machine in an old entertainment center too, but I couldn't figure out how to entend the shelf so that it would wobble up and down as the machine was being used! You;ll have to let me know how it works for you. Love the insert for the open space (I need one of those). And the light is perfect, I am always needing more light when I am working. I'm super jealous that yours has the retractable doors, I just have to move mine all the way to the outside! Anyways, I found you through "Not Just a Housewife", just wanted to let you know how awesome it is...oh and I LOVE 2 tomed furniture, so staining the top even though it took longer was so totally the way to go!!!

Traci said...

Stunning!

Christa said...

I LOVE this!!

Tons of work, bu this end result is wonderful. Beautiful and functional. Nice job. (I want one!)

moonlake said...

Great job love it.