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Trash to Treasure -Antique Sewing Table Makeover

We picked up this poor little antique sewing table at the Brimfield Antique Show and Flea Market last year for  $30. It was in really rough shape but it had such character I knew we could make it pretty again. What a great project for the thrift store (in this case, flea market) upcycle challenge?

Thrift Store Decor Upcycle Challenge

The Rules:

  • Upcycle an item(s) from a thrift store, resale store, or garage sale into a new piece of decor.
  • There’s no monthly theme.
  • There’s no budget to stick to.

Meet the Hosts

Amanda | The Kolb Corner    Maureen | Red Cottage Chronicles   Kim | Made in a Day

Dru | Polka Dot Poplars    Erlene | My Pinterventures    Colleen | Life on Kaydeross Creek    Pili | Sweet Things

Shirley | Intelligent Domestications    Debra | Shoppe No. 5    Marie | DIY Adulation Ann Duct Tape and Denim

Chelsea | The Johnsons Plus Dog    Jes | My DIY Envy    Lindsay | Crazy Organized Megan Come on Get Crafty

Molly | Just a Little Creativity    Ashley | 3 Little Greenwoods    Kimm | Reinvented    Michelle | Our Crafty Mom

Jeannee | Shepherds and Chardonnay   Sue | A Purdy Little House   Sara | Twelve on Main

Claire | Pillar Box Blue     Chelc | Inside the Fox Den    Kim | Farmhouse Made   Victoria | Dazzle While Frazzled

Sherry | Savvy Apron    Jennifer and Vicki | 2 Bees in a Pod    Lora | Craftivity Designs

  Denise | My Thrifty House   Toni | Small Home Soul

Make sure you follow our board on Pinterest for more upcycled decor inspiration!

And a challenge it was…


Antique Sewing Machine Makeover - thrift store upcycle challenge Life on Kaydeross Creek


First we remove the sewing machine…


Antique Sewing table - upcycle challenge - Life on Kaydeross Creek


We found all of these cool parts in a compartment on the top that dated back to the 1940’s. We started by cleaning it up with some good old fashioned soap and water to remove the grime that had built up.  We had originally thought that much of the grime would come off to reveal this cool gray/blue rustic kind of look but it didn’t clean up like I had hoped and just looked dirty. I reluctantly decided to paint it. Unfortunately, I kind got ahead of myself here and had my husband add the top to it before I decided what to do about the color.


Antique Sewing Table makeover thrift store upcycle challenge - Life on Kaydeross Creek

We used our go to wood, rough saw pine from the mill, because we had a few pieces left over from another project.  I sanded the pieces down until they were smooth and stained them with Watco stain.


Antique Sewing table Makeover - end table - Life on Kaydeross Creek


Then it was time to prep the piece for paint. I used regular spackle to touch up all of the holes.


Antique Sewing Table Makeover - Life on Kaydeross Creek


Then I removed the hardware and door. I placed the hardware in a plastic dish and soaked them in lemon juice and salt to remove the rust and grime.


Sewing table hardware - Life on Kaydeross Creek

All sanded down and ready for paint…


Antique Sewing Table Makeover - Upcycle Challenge -Life on Kaydeross Creek


I wanted to try to get the color close to what it was originally. I made chalk paint with some plaster of Paris and mixed black craft paint with Benjamin Moore Green Winter I had picked up in a sample. It was more blue than I wanted but I went with it.


Antique Sewing Table Makeover - Upcycle Challenge - Life on Kaydeross Creek


I added the hardware and door back on and gave it another coat of stain to darken it up a bit. I also sanded here and there to make it look more worn and rustic.


Antique sewing table makeover - upcycle challenge - Life on Kaydeross Creek


Once I saw it all put back together I didn’t like the gap at the top of the table under the wood so I asked my husband to add another layer of wood.  And this antique sewing table makeover is complete…


Antique Sewing Table Makeover - Life on Kaydeross Creek







Antique Sewing table makeover - trash to treasure upcycle - Life on Kaydeross Creek



Shop My Home

And now for more thrifty goodness!

Check out what my fellow upcyclers created below!


    • Colleen says:

      Thanks, Victoria! I wish I could say I had the magic formula but I don’t really have a secret/technique. It’s more like randomly sanding here and there and hoping for the best. 🙂

    • Colleen says:

      Thank you, Lora! It’s nice for a little pop of color. I had not heard of the lemon juice trick either but it’s amazing the stuff you find on the internet 🙂

    • Colleen says:

      Thank you Ashley! I probably would have walked right by too, but my husband saw it and thought we could “do something with it”. He’s an enabler 🙂

  1. Pili says:

    I love a good makeover and this is one of them, love what you did with it! Adding the extra top to hide the gap gives it a finished look. Love the color and how you distressed it for an aged look! Thanks for the tip about the salt and lemon, never heard about it before

  2. I love this piece, probably crafted by someone’s husband back when homemade everything was the norm. Pieces like this have such character that bring so much warmth into a home. Love your update! Thanks for sharing it at #Fridaysfurniturefix Colleen.

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