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Part 3: Singer Sewing Machine and Cabinet Makeover

Thursday, January 30, 2014
Welcome to Part 3 of my 3 Part series!

Part 1: Before & After Pictures

Part 2: Sewing Machine Makeover
Part 3: Cabinet Makeover

In this post I will show you how I remodeled an old sewing cabinet into a small side table.

I actually thought the cabinet was cute but it wouldn't serve much of a purpose outside of housing a sewing machine.. except maybe a make-up vanity.  I wanted something smaller that I would actually use.

The cabinet is mostly original with only a few boards added and new knobs.  It's the perfect size for a side table by a couch or tall night stand.

 I started the 2 hour dis-assembly process...

...and set apart pieces I knew I would use.

Every face piece of the cabinet has a veneer glued on.  Well... glue back in the day wasn't very good so the veneer starts peeling off.

I fix it by dripping glue over the opening...

...use my air compressor to blow the glue inside..

...and clamp...

 ...and clamp...

...and done!  It was a long process since I only have enough clamps to do one piece at a time but it brings the wood back to normal.

Sanded every surface.

I glued both of the drawer cabinets together side by side and cut and re-glued the back to just the right size to fit the drawers.  For the top I would have liked to use the original top to the cabinet, but you can see in the picture it didn't have enough overhang to look good... I cut the original top down and glued new wood around to frame it to be the right size.  I routed the edge as close to the original as I could.

I added 2x2 boards around the bottom edge of the sides and back because you could see the bottom of the drawers, plus it just looks better!

These are the products I used to finish the cabinet.

I brushed pre-stain wood conditioner on and HOPED that I could just stain the whole thing dark brown and the new wood would blend in. Well, that didn't happen no matter how many coats I put on or different colors I used.  I wasn't happy with how it looked and didn't know what to do!

I really don't like covering up beautiful-old wood but I taped up the drawers and cabinets and went for it anyways.  Three coats of white paint and I should have stopped here because looking back I like the bright white...

...but I sanded to give it a distressed look and I must have got carried away.

To give it a more natural-aged look I wiped a dark glaze over the top, wiped off, and then used a wet rag to wipe even more.  I coated with 2 coats of Matte Polyurethane.

I wasn't completely happy with it when I was done which is the worst feeling after spending so much time so I switched out the old wooden knobs with something a little more interesting.

 The back side looks pretty good with only a small seam line where I re-glued the ends back together.

3 comments on "Part 3: Singer Sewing Machine and Cabinet Makeover"
  1. So cute- love the hardware and the drawers all grouped together!

  2. Hi
    Came across your blog. I'm restoring an old treadle cabinet and am trying to duplicate one of the pieces. Anyways, a tip for you about the laminate -- use a large "horse-sized needle syringe with a large needle (I originally got these syringes for injecting some solution into my fruit trees where the peach borers. were getting to it). You might be able to pick up a syringe at a farm and feed store -- or just look online. It works great. When I'm done using it, I insert a sewing pin into the hole to keep it from drying up at the tip. Works like a charm.

    1. That is excellent advice! I might pick myself one of those for my other projects! Thank you!


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