I like nice, roomy nightstands that look like nightstands (as opposed to a small table or overturned box. Even better if it has lots of storage inside! When I saw this pair on Craig's List for $25 I knew they had potential.
This is the pair, one sitting on top of the other.
Sorry, not the best photo!
Before they were an off-white shade requiring a lot of touch ups. The handles were a brassy color.
I got the notion to remove the toe kick for each piece and add feet to the bottom. Each piece received fresh paint, and the handles were spray painted a hammered silver color.
By the way, in case you were wondering, the toe kick is the recessed bottom part of each of the cabinets. Your kitchen cabinets probably have them too...go stand at the sink...the part that's recessed that you can kick with your toes? That's a toe kick.
With the 6" feet, my Roomba can fit underneath!
I used a glossy white because I didn't want shabby chic so much as just...chic.
I also painted the interiors, which were the original brown before...and now a bright white:
The organizers from Marshalls (one in each stand) hold sheets.
A pretty drawer organizer keeps items in place. (Also from Marshall's)
I also repainted a dresser/mirror that was also bought on Craig's List. Before, it was a boring brown veneer in need of lots of touch-ups (sorry, no before photo). Now, it's another chic addition to the bedroom set:
Originally, the mirror was attached. Unfortunately, it was so low,
I couldn't even see my head...and I'm vertically challenged!
The cost for the dresser, mirror and nightstands, as well as the supplies to spruce them up, was under $100.
<b>And Now-How To:</b>
This project is best done outside for ventilation (and because of the mess!) Remember to wear safety goggles and follow all safety instructions provided with the tools/materials that you use.
<b>Replacing a toe kick with feet:</b>
Tools: Jigsaw, drill, 4 feet with pre-drilled screws (found at Home Depot or Lowe's), gorilla glue and felt rounds for the bottoms of the feet.
1. Turn the cabinet (or in this case nightstand) upside down on a sturdy surface to work. Using a jigsaw, carefully cut off the toe kick FLUSH with the base of the cabinet. It's OK if it's not perfect, mine isn't either. Just make sure that the spots where you will later add feet are pretty level and that any mistakes aren't visible when the cabinet is turned upright.
2. Measure in from each corner about 2" and mark with a pencil. This is where you will drill holes for your feet, so make sure that each mark is an equal distance from it's respective corner.
3. Drill a hole slightly smaller than the diameter of the screw that's attached to the foot. If you aren't sure what the diameter is, use a cheat sheet (available at home improvement stores for a few dollars) or ask someone at the hardware store to measure it for you. Or, use the lazy method...eyeball it.
4. Screw in your feet (all 4).
5. Carefully turn the cabinet upright and see if it stands level. I say carefully because some of your feet may be loose. That's OK at this point.
6. Assuming that the cabinet isn't GROSSLY tilted, turn it back on it's head, unscrew the feet, pour in some Gorilla Glue (yes, that's it's name. It's good stuff!), then screw the feet back in. Let dry overnight. Nothing will ever get those suckers back out again.
7. The next day, turn it back on it's feet and check to see if level. If it wobbles a bit, that's OK, we can fix that. Note which leg is short.
8. Lift one corner at a time adding the felt rounds (use the kind with a sticky back) to the bottom of each foot. If you had one foot that was shorter, add two rounds, stacked on top of one another to fix it.
9. Finish painting!
I used to seriously hate doing any work that didn't provide immediate gratification. In my mind, that included sanding and priming. What I learned with the nightstands and dresser, however, is that those are important steps that may seem tedious, but in the end, have a high payoff.
1. Remove all hardware from the furniture that you intend to repaint.
2. Sand surfaces using a medium-grit paper, followed by a finer grit.
3. Get rid of the dust that accumulated from sanding...since I was outside, I got out the yard blower and blew the heck out of the furniture first...then I came back with a damp cloth and wiped all of the surfaces that I intended to paint.
4. Prime following instructions on paint can. I used oil-based because I already had it. Since you sanded, I think you could use either oil or latex.
6. Recoat as necessary to get the finish you want.
7. Paint hardware with spray paint, if needed.
8. After everything dries, put everything back together and voila! A new piece of furniture!
**Bonus: Although it's a huge pain in the you-know-what...I painted the insides of the drawers as well as the sides that show when you pull them out. It just looks nicer when you use the furniture. If you leave those areas unfinished, you'll be less satisfied, even if you don't realize it!