Refurbishing Furniture

Bronze Post Medal for All Time! 172 Posts
July 26, 2010

An old dresser fixed up with rope drawer handles.This is a chest of drawers I painted and stenciled for my sewing room.

Approximate Time: 4 hours not counting drying time



  1. First I washed the chest well and then I sanded lightly to remove the shine. I then primed the whole chest with a latex primer. At this point you might want to number your drawers because sometimes even though they look the same size, they are not. I found out that the hard way.
  2. After thoroughly drying, paint the chest the color of your choice. I painted mine a grassy green to go with the rest of the room. You might need two coats if your coverage is not good with the first one.
  3. Next, I did the stencil in the middle of the drawer. You can either use paint for this or if you have a thicker stencil, you can use the joint compound or Spackle to apply over the stencil. This raises it, and gives dimension to your project. When using this stencil, after applying the compound, immediately lift the stencil and wash it off so it is clean for the next drawer.

    After allowing to dry, about 4 hours, you are ready to paint it. Place stencil back on the dried compound and paint it, being careful not to get any under the stencil. Do each drawer and allow to dry. If you have a hard time getting the paint off your stencil, use denatured alcohol.
  4. For top coat: Mix 2 parts ivory paint with 2 parts glaze OR you can use water instead of glaze, but you have longer working time with the glaze. To glaze, dip just the tip of your brush in the ivory mixture and brush some off on newspaper. Then lightly brush over the grass green paint and over the stencil. Remember that you do not need much paint, you just want to lightly touch and glide across. Let the glaze application dry.
  5. Make handles by using clothesline rope. Cut off a length that is long enough to make a square knot in the middle and long enough to insert through both holes where the former handles were.
  6. A drawer handle made out of rope.


  7. NOTE: Before cutting, put Scotch tape around where you will cut or it will fray out. You will be tying them together in the back of the face of the drawer so you will need a good length. Test one out for length before cutting all of them. I bought this rope at the $1 store so needless to say, it was a very economical way to replace the handles. This was a fun project. I had the paint already so I just paid $15 for the chest and $1 for the rope, very economical project.
  8. By Elaine from IA

    Comment Pin it! Was this helpful? 6
    Read More Comments

15 More Solutions

Share on ThriftyFunThis page contains the following solutions. Have something to add? Please share your solution!

December 28, 2010

A glass top coffee table can be changed to match the seasons. Every few months. I gather leaves from either my cedar or oak tree and lay them atop the glass.


I give it a light coat of spray paint, remove the leaves and once dried, flip the glass over.

Leaf Patterned Glass Table Top

Comment Pin it! Was this helpful? 17

Bronze Feedback Medal for All Time! 107 Feedbacks
April 3, 2007

When we were younger we bought our kids dresser at a garage sale, but the handles were missing. We couldn't afford to buy any. So, my husband strung rope through the holes and tied a knot inside to hold it in place.

Comment Was this helpful? 4

Silver Post Medal for All Time! 433 Posts
July 6, 2012

I was not liking the way my kitchen chairs were looking; they are 20 years old. I didn't want to buy new ones, so I gave them a coat of white paint and bought a new chair pad for them.


They look so much better.

Painted chair with new pad.

Comment Pin it! Was this helpful? 3

December 29, 2007

These two items were being tossed by a friend. So, of course I had to bring them home. The legs on the TV tray were tarnished and the top was pretty beat up. Some paint, some decoupage and a new tray.

Salvage Chair and TV Tray

Comment Pin it! Was this helpful? Yes

March 23, 2005

Quick ideas for touching up scratches and dings on furniture. Post your ideas.

Comment Was this helpful? Yes

February 22, 2012

Take all mismatched furniture and create a entertainment center. You can purchase spray cans of Stone at Wal-Mart, Home Depot or any place they sell spray paint.


It gives a ceramic looking finish.

Use "Stone" Spray Paint To Refurbish Furniture

Comment Pin it! Was this helpful? 1


Ask a QuestionHere are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community or ask a new question.

November 11, 2013

Our cedar swing looks old. What is the best way to make it look new again?

By D Phillip


November 14, 20130 found this helpful

Sand the rough spots, then 'paint' it with linseed oil. You'll need multiple coats of the oil and it will be beautiful. Linseed oil also protects from rain. Remember to give it another coat each year. If it's exposed to the sun it will eventually darken and look even better!

Reply Was this helpful? Yes
Answer this Question

January 22, 2012

I have a plain glass table top. I would like it better crackled. Is crackled a word? Does anyone know how to do this? The table is about 58 inches round. Thanks.

By Hedy P


Gold Feedback Medal for All Time! 679 Feedbacks
January 30, 20120 found this helpful

I think there might be a spray product that you can use to give the table a crackled effect - yes crackled is the right word. I don't think you really want to actually try altering the glass itself - you might have a mess of broken glass on your hands. It would involve heating it & suddenly cooling it. We used to do that with marbles in a frying pan, but I don't recommend doing it to something as large as a table top.

Another alternative would be to cover it with contact plastic that has a crackle pattern in it, or perhaps with a piece of plastic lens in a crackle pattern, that they use for covers over long fluorescent ceiling lights; this would have to be cut carefully but could possibly work. Good luck with your project, but be careful with the glass.

Reply Was this helpful? Yes
Answer this Question


Share on ThriftyFunCheck out these photos. Click at right to share your own photo in this page.

July 9, 2005

I'm the type that likes to use what I got. In this case what I got was two side chairs that didn't match my living room. I decided to make it match with my carpet.

Refurbished chairs in a zebra print.

Comment Pin it! Like this photo? Yes

May 7, 2021

This project cost me $1 to do! All I had to buy was the $1 decal from Dollar Tree. I got the cabinet from "loose trash" from the next door neighbor. It was in good condition but in need of some exterior improvement to "doll it up" a little!

A white dresser with sticker designs on the front of the drawers.

Read More... Pin it! Was this helpful? Yes

December 13, 2016

This is a page about refurbishing goodwill patio chairs. Over time exposure to the elements can damage patio chairs. Refurbishing them is a great way to give new life to your patio chairs.

Refurbishing Goodwill Patio Chairs

Read More... Pin it! Was this helpful? Yes

June 22, 2016

This is a page about refurbishing a dresser. Save money on furniture with some time and paint, by giving an old chest of drawers a new look.

Dresser in the process of being painted black

Read More... Pin it! Was this helpful? Yes

July 6, 2013

This is a page about refinishing wood furniture. Refinishing wood furniture is a great way to recycle an older piece or repair damage to the surface finish of furniture.

Refinishing Wood Furniture

Read More... Pin it! Was this helpful? Yes
Load More
Home and Garden Home Improvement Furniture RefinishingMarch 29, 2012
Pest Control
Back to School Ideas!
Ask a Question
Share a Post
Better LivingBudget & FinanceBusiness and LegalComputersConsumer AdviceCoronavirusCraftsEducationEntertainmentFood and RecipesHealth & BeautyHolidays and PartiesHome and GardenMake Your OwnOrganizingParentingPetsPhotosTravel and RecreationWeddings
Published by ThriftyFun.
Desktop Page | View Mobile
Disclaimer | Privacy Policy | Contact Us
Generated 2022-08-29 00:12:05 in 3 secs. ⛅️️
© 1997-2022 by Cumuli, Inc. All Rights Reserved.