Armoire Cabinet Makeover: Painted Distressed Light Green

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How to repurpose an orange outdated armoire into a beautiful rustic cabinet by removing the doors and painting it!

The Hubs and I have been upcycling furniture for over 6 years now. Everyone in our small rural community knows that we love to save junk. It is a good thing because I have tons of eyes that scout for me. It’s not unusual for me to get a call or text to tell me there is a piece of furniture on the curb or even on the side of the road! The Hubs surprised me one day with this cabinet. And best of all, it was FREE! Now onto the upcycled armoire cabinet project.

Upcycled Armoire Cabinet Before
The old fashioned armoire – Before

A coworker no longer needed it and asked if we could do something with it. Ummmm YES! One of the front doors had a major ding and could not be repaired, so we just removed the doors.

Upcycled Armoire Cabinet with Back, Drawers and Doors Removed
The Upcycled Armoire without front Doors and Drawers

Tools and Supplies Used for this Makeover

Makeover Process

As it sat in my shop, I pondered over it for days, trying to envision what direction to take, waiting for the clever to pop up. I knew it had to be painted. This was not a beautiful antique armoire and the orange wood was so outdated and so ORANGE.

After invading my paint stash (because I was too darn lazy to go to the store), I found this beautiful green by Sherwin Williams I had leftover. I had already made up my mind that I was not painting it white, I wanted color. The color was called “Savvy Green”, a light airy green. Normally, I do use chalk paint because chalk paint adheres great to almost any surface. Chalk Paint is also easy to distress. But I did not have any colors in stock that I wanted to use. You don’t necessarily have to use chalk paint for furniture makeover, if latex paint is more available, go for it! The colors are ENDLESS!

Adding Wood Strips to the back

As you all probably know by now, I am a fan of the farmhouse look. I knew I wanted to add wood to this upcycled armoire. I decided to remove the old, ugly inside panel and use thin wood strips to give it a planked look. The Hubs had scrap wood leftover that would be perfect (you can use any wood that you have on hand). He cut the strips to size for me using his chop saw. He sanded the pieces until smooth using 220 grit sandpaper. I then applied Minwax Stain in the color, English Chestnut.

Wood Strips for Upcycled Armoire Cabinet
Planked Wood Back

He also built two wooden storage shelves to go inside the cabinet using plywood and cutting it down to size. (Eeeek, I forgot to take a picture ughhh!)

Painting the Armoire Cabinet

I put the strips aside to dry overnight and started prepping my cabinet. The cabinet was cleaned with my vinegar and water solution, making sure to allow the cabinet to dry for an hour.

I gave the entire piece one coat of the Savvy Green, allowing it to dry overnight. The inside, as well as the two storage shelves the Hubs constructed, were also painted. The next day, I applied a second coat and allowed it to dry overnight.

Repurposed Armoire Cabinet Two Coats of Paint
Second Coat of Paint

The next day, I applied one coat of Polycrylic to the entire armoire and the shelving pieces. I also gave the wood strips one coat. After allowing it to dry for a day, we inserted the shelving pieces using the same clips that came with the cabinet.

Now, this is my favorite part. Distressing. I just love the way it makes a piece look worn. I used 220 grit sandpaper and went to town. There is not a wrong or right. I distressed heavily around the edges and drawer edges where normal wear and tear would occur. I also distressed the sides of the cabinet as well.

Upcycled Armoire Cabinet Distressed

The final step was to attach the wood strips to the back using my brad nailer.

Back Added

I found the pretty knobs for the drawers at Hobby Lobby. They really compliment the wood back. The pulls were brass pulls that I had in my stash. I painted two coats of the Savvy Green and then applied a coat of Polycrylic.

Hardware Added
Knobs from Hobby Lobby

The Upcycled armoire project completed

The outdated armoire became a charming French country cabinet. It would the perfect addition to a large entryway or a living room. This piece sold the very day I advertised it. Such a beauty now!

Remember our motto: “It’s not about what it is, it’s about what it will be.”

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8 thoughts on “Armoire Cabinet Makeover: Painted Distressed Light Green”

  1. This piece went from ugly and outdated to useful and gorgeous! Chalk paint is so expensive and I appreciate the freedom of colors latex offers.

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