The Dressing table


When I bought my house it had been abandoned so was full of old furniture and many, many years of rubbish and dust. Some of the leftover stuff that I could never see myself using, including a triple bunk bed and a play kitchen, and they went on Freecycle and quickly found themselves a new home. Others were kept with some sort of thought that they could be used somewhere else, these were mostly things I could break down into basic materials such as doors from old cupboards and an old chipboard wardrobe but among all of this stuff there was a dressing table.

I had some sort of thought in the back of mind that I would clean it up and use it as a dressing table but as I worked on the house and got closer to finishing my Master bedroom it became obvious that not only was the dressing table impractical but there was also no where for it to go.

So I started looking at it as individual parts and then it was just a case of waiting for the perfect project to come up. Eventually as you can see above, I ended up using every part of the original unit apart from the draw handles which I still have just in case I need them!


Since moving in my TV in the living room had been sat on a Lack table from Ikea, I decided that while this worked, it was not a forever solution and that the base of the Dresser could be transformed into a TV stand.

Base Unit
Base Unit- at the start
The base Unit in Action
The base Unit in Action

1. Painting the unit

First I gave the entire unit a light sand to remove all loose particles and to key the surface of the paint so that mine would stick. I ended up giving the unit three coats of paint with a light coloured paint until I had covered all of the wood in the unit.

2. Decoration

You can get your images for Decoupaging an item from anywhere you want, any images that you like. For this item I used pictures of flowers and buildings that I could find in the National Trust Guide book, I went through the booklet cutting out any images that I liked until I had a series of different piles depending on the size of the picture.

Decoupage is a relatively process that can create a fabulous unique finish on your piece of furniture. I used a mix of 2 parts PVA glue to 1 part water, make sure it is well mixed in a small pot and you have your equipment ready to go. I decided to only put the images on the front and the top edge, this allowed the images to stand out against the paint that I applied.

Glue the images in place, make sure to coat the images with glue once they are in place, the images will slip and slide into position. It is best to have a little overlap between images, so that there aren’t flashes of white from between your images unless of course this is what you want!

3. Finish

You have to protect not only the images but the paint, so once the PVA glue had dried out, I gave this 4 coats of a clear varnish. I used a water based varnish that took a few coats to give the unit a proper layer of protection.

4. Finishing touches

As this was to be used as a TV stand it needed some shelves to keep DVDs, Freeview boxes and other important bits and pieces on. I went to my wood store and found some pieces of leftover laminate flooring that seemed to be a good width and could be but to the correct length.

The final touch was cutting a hole in the back of the unit that I could feed wires through and my unit was complete!



After the base had been used, the Draws moved into the loft, with a thought of creating some sort of 3D pictures in them that could go on the stairs as decoration but with the stairs not yet finished it was put to the back of my mind.

Then I saw a planter at a well known Home and Garden store that I loved the look of, so much that i took a picture of it with half a thought that I would be able to build something similar myself.

Existing Planter that I liked
Existing Planter that I liked

It wasn’t until a little bit later that I became aware that the draws I had in the loft could maybe be used to create something similar.

The two draws were sanded, painted in a light colour to cover up the stencilling that had previously been on the front. I then used some pieces from the deconstructed futon base I had to create the shape I wanted, screwing all the pieces together before everything got another coat of paint and then a coat of Yacht varnish everywhere to protect the wood from the moisture that would seep in from the soil.

Once finished I filled my two draws with a mix of soil and compost and as the idea was to grow carrots in them. In the picture below you can see the plastic protection that I have also created.





The Mirror and its back piece would have originally been mounted to the back of the base unit but as I didn’t need a mirror behind my TV, the two pieces were repurposed.

Mirror in its final home

The Mirror was removed from the wooden back piece and I mounted it on the wall using standard mirror clips. It needed a clean and there is a little bit of damage around the edges but I prefer it to a standard square mirror.

The back piece that had been supporting the mirror was the same shape as the mirror so using the remains of a large draw that kept failing apart I decided to make a small book shelf that would live on the other side of the room.

Finished Bookshelf


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