Thursday, February 28, 2013

A Bright Transformation

After 3 and a half years of not seeing eye-to-eye, Stephen and I finally caught up on the same page and made a big, unimportant purchase: we bought a new TV.  To some of you, this is no big deal....however, to me, this was HUGE!  That story, however, is for another day and another time...continuing on...
The reason I tell you about the new TV is because it called for a new place to set it up.  Our old TV used to sit to the right of our fireplace:

Here's the problem with this set-up: it was definitely NOT conducive to watching television while sitting on the couch.  Something had to give, especially now that we have a new television.  Some of you may be thinking, "Hang that television above the mantel!" but I just couldn't bring myself to do it...I really love being able to decorate the mantel during the different seasons, and after this summer, when I used a Pinterest inspiration to update the mantel, I really didn't want to mount a television in that decoration space.  Originally, I thought we could put the new TV to the left of the fireplace, but then Stephen pointed out that it would cover up a lot of our bookshelves...that's when the brainstorming occurred.  

After seeing a friend turn a dresser into a TV stand, and then seeing them all over Pinterest, I decided that I was now on the lookout for a dresser to transform myself (with the help of my dad and his tools, that is).  I didn't need just any dresser, I needed a small enough dresser to put in the nook to next to our french doors (where the chair is):

This nook is directly across from the sofa and provides a wonderful viewing area to watch the television from both the couch and the love seat.  And so the dresser hunt began.  I literally checked Craigslist daily for about 4 months before I hit, what I believed, to be the jackpot.  I picked up this little lady, who just happened to be the exact right size (40") and came with a mirror (which was repurposed for another area of our home - that's to come later) for $50.  Here she is:

My original plan was to only remove the top drawer to use as a shelf for cable/dvd player and utilize the bottom two.  The only problem with this plan, was that when I got home, the drawers turned out to not be in as good of shape as I had previously thought...not to mention the whole thing was looking a little sad as I removed drawers:

Once I realized the condition of the drawers, I decided to only use the bottom drawer and to improvise with baskets where the second drawer originally was.  Here was the plan: remove the warped cardboard that separated each drawer and replace it where the first and second drawer had been with thick MDF that could act as a shelf.  I would then prime and paint the piece and call it a day...unfortunately it took a little bit longer than I had hoped, but nonetheless, the project is complete and I couldn't be happier!

I went to Home Depot and had 3/4" MDF cut to match the length and width of the bottom where the first and second drawers originally sat.  My dad helped me cut the small corners on these boards so that they fit perfectly inside the dresser.  He also helped me by attaching side supports on each side of the inside of the dresser so that the MDF had something to sit on all the way around it.  In order to get the boards in, we had to take the back and the top off the dresser - she looked a bit decapitated for awhile!  I filled in the hardware holes on the bottom drawer, because I only needed 2 holes (instead of the 4) for the new pulls.  
I followed Centsational Girl's advice and went with the Zinsser oil-base cover stain/primer, because the top of the dresser was a laminate.  I bought a cheap paint brush for the primer and then tossed it when I was finished to avoid the messy clean up.  I primed the pants off the dresser, and the new shelves, painted them and then put the drawers into place.  I put the bottom shelf into place and polyurethaned it before I put down the top shelf.  Once both the shelves had been polyed, I reattached the top and the front decorative pieces and then polyurethaned the entire dresser.  I decided to paint it "Yukon Gold" by Olympic to match my Ikea Hemnes Linen Cabinet (in case they ever ended up in the same room). 1 quart of paint was more than enough.
My dad then cut 4 holes into the back for cords to go through. The bottom drawer had to be reinforced and fixed, as it was falling apart.  My dad cut a thin piece of flat wood and added it to the bottom, inside of the drawer.  He also reinforced the sides and back by attaching thin pieces of wood with nails to the inside of the drawer.  Lastly, he put L-shaped brackets on either side of the drawers to hold it together.  You'd never know the drawer was in bad condition, unless you pulled it all the way out! 
The pulls I got at Home Depot for a couple bucks each, and the baskets are the perfect size and were purchased at Lowes.  When it's all said and done, I believe we spent a little more than $100 on this new TV stand and it fits and looks perfect in its new home:

Isn't she a beaut?!


  1. Beautiful transformation, love it! The baskets are such a cute and perfect fit. (Also drooling over your built-ins, so pretty). Thanks so much for stopping by my blog :)

    Elisabeth@Simply Parkers

  2. I am so impressed! It looks great!

  3. This is so great! I have been wanting to tackle a dresser make-over like this. You give me inspiration and motivation! Thanks for stopping by my blog as well and I am your newest follower. I hope you will follow me to.

  4. This looks amazing! I'm also sort of amazed to see how similar the shape our dressers are. Good call on moving the TV to that wall - it's no fun when you can't actually see the TV from a comfortable position on the couch! I love that you took the whole thing apart to put it back together again - we cheated on our and used some inexpensive melamine shelves from HD. There are some gaps between the sides of the dresser and the shelves, but because I painted the inside dark grey & the shelves are white, nobody notices. Great job on this project! I can't wait to poke around your blog and see what other awesome projects you have completed!

  5. Kari ...
    I'm with you on the "TV over the fireplace" issue. Your TV stand came out awesome! What on earth have we done without Pinterest all these years! Love the color too.
    Thanks for sharing :)


  6. Thank goodness she listened to her Dad. The TV stand is much sturdier than the original dresser. Certainly turned out to be a very beautiful and useful TV stand if I say so myself.

    The Dad of One Crazy Lady


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