DIY Interior Design,  Interiors On A Budget

My Retro Bedside Table Refurb

This has been a long time coming…

I promised this to you months ago and finally, here we are. I’m delivering! And I’m super excited.

It’s My Retro Bedside Table Refurb How To!

Let’s start at the beginning… When I moved into this apartment a year and a half ago, I was overjoyed by the luxury of space. I finally had room on BOTH sides of my bed for bedside tables. This was going to be a grown-up bedroom with matching bedside tables and lamps, a pipe-dream of mine since forever. However, I now had a serious challenge on my hands; finding 2 bedside tables that I liked and could afford (much, much harder than I had anticipated, I think I may have mentioned this before – Ha).

Eventually after weeks of scrolling through Gum Tree and Facebook Marketplace, I found them! 2 x Vintage Bedside Tables that looked like trash and cost $10 each. I however saw through the mask of terrible paint-work and peeling veneer through to the lovely shaped table with medium amount of storage capability.

I frantically contacted the seller on Gum Tree and picked those babies up ASAP. I was not loosing out on this opportunity. My next challenge was making them look aaaaaaamazing. I feel I achieved this and I’m here to share my ‘Do It Yourself’ experiences with you. Preface: I am not an expert DIY furniture refurbisher, however this was the method that I followed after some light Googling along with a lot of visualising and it worked for me.

 The before photo... 
The before photo… 

Vintage Bedside Table Re-Furb Part 1: Prep

Step 1: Remove Hardware. Ever if you’re not planning to replace the existing hardware like I did, you need to remove any knobs or handles from your piece right now. This will help you sand effectively and protect your hardware from any scratches or painting.

Step 2: Sanding. Sand….ing…. my two least favourite syllables to exist in the english language. This was by far the least enjoyable part of my DIY project. One of the side tables I purchased had horrible thick black paint, the previous owner must have done like 4 layers of paint which I soon discovered was covering up another layer of red paint underneath. Needless to say, I was sanding for a while. You’ll need a low to medium grit sandpaper and a sanding block along with a sheet or tarp to catch the dust underneath you – it can get pretty messy. Get into every little crevice and sand away until you have uncovered the uncoated finish of the timber underneath. Wipe everything down with a damp cloth until you have a smooth finish with no dust left.

 my patching product of choice
my patching product of choice

Step 3: Patching. I actually loved this bit. It was the most satisfying experience to fill up all the holes and cracks in the timber of these bedsides with putty. I purchased a standard timber filler from Bunnings and went to town. Since I was changing my hardware/ handles I also needed to fill the holes where the original handles had been secured. Once this was dry (I left this for about 24 hours) I sanded the tables again. I also needed to do another layer of filling as some of the putty had compacted in the cracks as it dried and it needed a top-up (especially the old handle holes, the putty dried up and sunk right in there). 

In regular Interiors Girl fashion, I have separated this post into 2 parts: Part 1 Prep & Part 2 Finishing. There’s a a lot of info and I want to give you guys the opportunity to ask any questions that I can answer in part 2! 

Until Next time!