Thrift Store Desk Makeover

I have to say, I think that this might be my most favourite project/makeover I’ve ever done. It turned out exactly like I had pictured I wanted it to in my mind, and I love when that happens!

I picked up this desk a few weeks ago from a thrift store for $25. I liked the shape of it, it was in great condition and it’s solid wood. The drawers were even made with dovetail joints, so I’m guessing it’s a bit older. This is what it looked like when I first got my hands on it:


It was a dated colour, had some dings and scratches on the top and it was missing a knob on one of the drawers. So, I sanded down the top to bare wood (which in hindsight I probably should have used a wood stripper or something because it took FOREVER to sand all of the finish off). I had some stain left over from other projects that I was going to use for the top, but when I started to apply it something was not right at all. The stain had become thick and was very red looking on the wood. I had a panic moment, but since I had already started I stained the whole thing anyway. The next day I grabbed a can of ebony coloured stain and redid the top, which happily resulted in the dark brown colour that I was going for. Crisis averted. I painted the bottom with the leftover paint from my kitchen backsplash, Behr’s Country Mist in semi-gloss. I put new knobs on the drawers that I picked up at the Restore for $.50 a piece and for a pop of colour and something different, I painted the insides of the drawers pink, Valspar’s Passion Pink. I still need to seal the stained wood top, but it’s close enough to done that I wanted to share it. Here it is! I’m so in love with it :)


I found a home for one of my thrift store lamps, and then just stole a few things from other spots to stage it a little bit. The desk is going to live in my craft room for now so that I have a place to work at without having to move the sewing machine off of the other desk.




$.50 each for these little beauties! Man, I love the Restore!



The curvy details on the desk are so much more noticeable now with the light paint colour. It almost looks white, especially in the pictures, but in person you can see that it definitely has a blue tone to it.


I love the fun pop of colour and the extra girliness that the pink drawers add :)

I love, love, love how this desk turned out! I loved taking it from something dated and blah to a beautiful piece of furniture that I’m excited to show off. I definitely have the furniture refinishing bug, so maybe I’ll keep at it and try to sell some. Who knows? In the mean time, I’m more than happy to work on this stuff to keep for myself :)

Linking to: Serenity Now, Tatertots & Jello, Liz Marie Blog, Classy Clutter, It’s Overflowing, Chic On A Shoestring Decorating, Flamingo Toes, Thrifty Decor Chick, The Ironstone Nest

20 Responses to “Thrift Store Desk Makeover”
  1. Sarah says:

    This looks great Steph! I really love that you took the time to paint the inside of the drawers. I’ve been thinking of doing that with our nightstands! It’s amazing how light Country Mist is. Our night stands are the color just darker than Country Mist (Tide Pools, I think) and I wouldn’t have guessed that Country Mist would be that pale. It looks really great with the wood top though! Glad you persevered and got the top to look the way you had imagined. Totally jealous that you have a desk dedicated for your sewing machine now!

    • Steph says:

      Thanks Sarah! I really love the pop of colour in the drawers so I’m glad I did that! I was really happy that I was able to fix the whole red stained top thing, and I love the look of the dark wood top with the painted bottom.
      I definitely love having a separate table for the sewing machine! It will be hard to downsize my craft space in the future when we need rooms for kids lol

    • Steph says:

      Also, I was really surprised at how light Country Mist is too! On the paint chip it looks like the perfect pale aqua but it comes out almost white. I used Tide Pools in our laundry room and its definitely a nice happy colour :)

  2. twistnpout says:

    Very nice, I like the surprise of pink in the drawer too- so cute.

  3. redagapeblog says:

    Wow! It turned out great! And I really love that you painted the inside of the drawers. I’m loving pink at the moment. :)

  4. redagapeblog says:

    Wow! It turned out great! And I really love that you painted the inside of the drawers. I’m loving pink at the moment. :)

  5. Catherine Caple says:

    Can you please give me some of your energy?

    Thanks, Catherine

  6. This looks great! I love the unexpected pop of colour in the drawers.

  7. It turned out beautiful! Also, I love (thrift store) lamp.

  8. This is amazing. I LOVE the wood top and you got such a great deal on it! So good. The lamp is also incredible. I scour thrift shops on a regular for something just like it, but nothing! Great work. The pink drawers are my fave!!!

  9. Awesome desk! I am on a mission to find one similar to yours… I’ll keep looking until I find it.

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