Sentimental Makeover

This old buffet has a story.

My dad made it in a college woodworking course way back in the 1970's.
My mom told the story of being newlyweds with a husband in dental school.
They were living frugally to say the least, and a big splurge was when she bought juice at the grocery.
Their only piece of nice furniture was this buffet that my dad made.
This was a fixture in my house for as long as I can remember.


Recently, I've been looking for a buffet-ish thing to put across from my dining room table.
Then I came across the old buffet in a back room of my dad's house, piled with random stuff.
In the drawer were some cub scout patches from decades ago.
Obviously it wasn't really being used, other than to collect dust.
I thought I should be the one to put it to good use, but the brown just wouldn't work in there.

So I got brave and asked my Dad if I could have it, and uh..... refinish it.
He's sentimental about this old piece, so I was kind of expecting a "no."
But he said YES!

So I took off the hardware.

And I sanded and sanded. There was a thick lacquer I had to get through.
Then I cleaned the wood with TSP.

I knew I didn't want any shade or brown or stain. So I thought I'd paint it white.
Then after tossing and turning at night, and feeling brave, I decided to step out of my black and white box.
I wanted to bring some blues into this room, so why not do it with this old buffet?
I picked the "Martha Stewart" shade, Tidewater.
It is practically a neutral color, the way it blends with gray undertones.
But I'm still claiming it was a bold color choice!

I used some of the same hardware, some new.
I spray painted it all (so it would look the same) with the special kind of rustoleum that paints metal.

Now this old buffet has stepped into 2010 with a fresh updated look.
It is also functional, and serves as storage for my extra dishes and serving pieces.

I love walking by and thinking about how much my parents enjoyed this buffet for so many years.
I think that furniture with a story is the best kind of furniture there is!

I'm linking to:


  1. It is totally awesome that it's being used and loved the way it should be! I think the makeover is great, but the story behind it is so touching.

  2. Oh! Oh, I love this piece. The lines are great, the new color and hardware are wonderful. Well done. I wish I could stumble on something like this. I'm totally jealous, in a good way.

  3. That is amazing! I may be calling you in the future! You have such a creative Eye!!! Will you come garage sale searching for some pieces for me? (:

  4. So......did your dad approve of the finished product?

  5. very old school and cute...

  6. I love it!! Good choice on the color. I bet your dad is very pleased with how it looks.

  7. LOVING this makeover. My dad is a shop teacher and thinks I'm nuts for wanting to paint over perfectly good furniture! LOL. So I know the feeling..but this turned out amazing! I'm loving your blog and I'm so excited to be your newest follower..I love new friends at FrouFrouDecor! I'd also like to invite you to my link party/giveaway..every Friday! Hope to see you there!
    ~Terrell @ FrouFrouDecor~

  8. Looks amazing! How in the world do you have time to be doing stuff like this right now? You amaze me.

  9. Oh my you are so freakin awesome and I wish I had skillz such as that

  10. Heidi- Yes, lets go "garage sale-ing" and find some treasures! Craigslist is a great place to find old furniture too!

    Rachel- My dad did like it. He was surprised, but said he liked the color. I'm sure he would never say if he didn't like it, though. He's too nice! Hopefully he approves!

  11. It looks gorgeous! Great job Ashleigh!

  12. Hi, hope it's OK to contact you here. We would love to include your blog on our giveaway search engine: Giveaway Scout ( Have a look and if interested, use our online form to add your blog ( ). thanks, Josh

  13. That looks great! I can't believe your mad skills!

  14. I love this - you inspire me to try something like this. What a perfect way, to keep something so precious in the family!

  15. It turned out beautifully. I love the story that goes with it. What a nice family heirloom!

  16. I'm glad this piece gets to be used and loved again!

  17. I love that he said Yes, and I love what you did with it. It's beautiful, and now it can be with you for years and years and look CURRENT! Gorgeous!

  18. Your post made me cry. What a wonderful heritage!

    I adore the blue, excellent choice!:-)


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