Jewelry Armoire Redo/DIY

I received this beautiful jewelry armoire a few years back (was my husbands grandmothers) and have been wanting to completely overhaul it – which I did over the course of 6 weeks. I had a bit of time off for the holidays, so between all of the holiday craziness I squeezed in some time for my first furniture redo! I basically took apart the entire piece and refinished everything—from the wood to the upholstery, to the hardware. Yeah, I’m crazy. Looking back, this was A LOT of work, but well worth it in the end. I love my “new” armoire!

Here’s the before and after – all closed up. It came to me with scratches and dings on the lovely brown stained finish, brass hardware and a pink velvet interior. My vision was a white painted armoire with oil rub bronze hardware, and fun pops of color for the nine drawers and two side panels.


Below are some images “before” the redo!






First step was to take apart the armoire – hardware first. This was by far the easiest step. Plus, who doesn’t love spray painting? Once I had all the knobs, hinges, screws, pulls and magnetic closures off, I separated them in to groups and began priming. We already had Rustoleum primer in the house, so I used that as the base coat. It was grey, but didn’t matter as it would be sprayed over with Rustoleum paint in metallic oil rubbed bronze. This stuff works great and gave me exactly the look I wanted! I did two coats of the paint, letting the first dry thoroughly before the second.



Next came demo of the drawer liners. Ripped those babies out, but was careful not to shred to pieces, as I needed the templates to make new ones.


I purchased my fabric material at JoAnns – they have the best selection by far. For the drawers, I wanted something that had a little texture or “stick” to it, so my jewelry would not slide upon opening the drawers. I found some really pretty corduroy in grey and teal (which also had silver flecks in it). Then matched that up to a neat cotton fabric which in included both colors and an apricot accent color in the pattern. A yard of each color worked out perfect!


I used Mod Podge and a cheapo 2″ foam brush to do all the gluing. I already had the glue at home and it happened to be gloss finish- doesn’t matter as it’s under all the fabric.


Next came the time consuming part: Tracing and cutting new templates from a heavy card stock, then gluing/wrapping them with the fabric. Obviously, I was smarter with my cutting (shown below this piece is smack dab in the middle of the sheet). I measured and maximized all of my paper so I had the least amount of scrap.




As for the wooden drawer dividers – these too were covered with the pink velvet material, and the easiest thing to do was simply wrap the new fabric over the old.


I used the same template process for everything, including the side panels where my longer necklaces would go. Once I had all the new liners cut and covered with fabric and my drawers were painted white, I glued them inside (bottom first, then sides/front/back) using Mod Podge.


Next came the furniture itself. I started out by sanding the entire thing with a 150 grit sanding block. Once I had the shiny gloss gone, I wiped down the armoire with a damp cloth and let dry.


I primed the whole thing (drawers included) with 2 coats of Rustoleum spray primer in white, letting the first dry before the second coat. Then, painted (with brush and rollers) the whole thing with a coat of Behr Premium Plus in Ultra Pure White. We had a can of this already in the house so happy not to have to buy more paint!


Drawers show below using the same process, these are shown primed with two coats.

And, the finished piece – completely painted, hardware reinstalled and new fabric in the drawers and sides. You’ll notice I did swap out the original tear-drop shaped handles on the sides for circular knobs (only because they broke off the first time I attempted to unscrew them – oops).


So pretty, I love it! The hinged top and 3 large bottom drawers were lined in teal, and the remaining 5 top drawers were lined in grey. All of the dividers were done in the patterned fabric so the whole piece is tied together.








And, another look at the “before” and “after!


35 thoughts on “Jewelry Armoire Redo/DIY

  1. This is great! I am in the process of redoing a smaller jewelry hutch….actually a recycled medicine cabinet!! This will be helpful to me!

  2. Wendy- I am super impressed! This turned out great- love the colors! Question- do you think the Rustoleum paint in metallic oil rubbed bronze could be used on all the gold door knobs we have in our house? Does the paint dry smoothly or is it textured?

    • Thanks Robyn! I would say yes it should work. I’ve used this on a couple things so far around the house and so far it hasn’t scratched or peeled. Just make sure you clean first, prime with a dark color (2 coats) and then same thing for the paint (2 coats) letting each dry in between. If you go for it, let me know how it turns out!

  3. This is exactly what I’ve been looking for!!! I scored an armoir about 2 years ago from an estate sale and have been procrastinating on its overhaul because I had no idea where to start. I will def be using this post as a resource, thank you!

  4. Thank you so much for posting this! I am in the middle of my own amiore redo. All pieces are primed so tomorrow I am ready to paint. Then to the fabric store to complete the inside…I can hardly wait until it is finished! I’ve referred to your post a couple of times to help me through this!

    • You’re welcome! The fabric was by far the most time consuming part, but also the most rewarding because it looks so cool and pretty now when opened up. Good luck finishing your armoire!

  5. This looks great. What did you use to wrap the material for the ring holders around? I have an empty armoire with empty drawers and am trying to recreate this

    • Kristen – thanks! I just re-covered the existing material (you might be able to see the pink material over the “old” ring section in one of the before pictures). It was simply foam strips that were bent in half the long way and then was glued together, side by side. I’m sure you could re-create this if one doesn’t already exist in your armoire. Good luck!

  6. This. Is. Gorgeous. I have a similar one that needs redone, but the top is totally mangled and cannot be fixed. Any thoughts on refinishing the rest and doing something different with the top?

  7. Thank you! If the top of your armoire is all wood, I’d first recommending sanding down to the bare wood to get all the scratches/dings out and re-staining/finishing or painting. If it is a wood veneer, I’d recommend lifting or sanding the old veneer off completely, and replacing with a new veneer. You can purchase sheets at most lumber yards or Lowes/HomeDepot. Once you have your surface sanded and ready, flip the top upsidedown and trace the shape onto the underside of the veneer. (Doesn’t have to be perfect, as you will send the edges to perfection later). Then put a thin coating of wood glue to the surface and lay down the new veneer- weight down and dry for 24 hours. Use a utility knife to clean up the edges, then sand down so it’s smooth with the rest of the piece. Leave as-is, or prime/paint.

    • I just ripped them out with my hands. They came out pretty easily, but some of the glue was still stuck inside the drawers which I wasn’t too worried about – they were all recovered anyway. :)

      I was careful though, not to rip the felted paper too much, as I traced these pieces to re-create.

  8. Where did you get the heavy card stock big enough for the sides? I took mine apart and just realized I need to get some of this.

  9. I know this is a vintage piece, but do you know what brand it is? This is exactly what I have been looking for. It looks beautiful with what you have done to it. Thanks for sharing.

      • Can the handles on bottom drawer be removed without
        removing the felt?
        I need to replace just one if I can
        find a match. Mine is just like the one you refurbished!

  10. I received this exact armoir today as a flea market find gift. I had been looking for one for a while. I can’t wait to tackle the refinishing!!

  11. I just picked up this exact jewelry chest! Pink velvet and all! I was just going to clean the interior but after seeing this I have to replace! Beautiful!

  12. Got a very similar piece for free; someone just giving it away. I am going to follow your steps and give it to my teenage daughter as a gift in a couple of weeks. I am creating custom ceramic knobs from Zazzle with my own image created from my daughter’s duvet cover design. I am crafty, but thanks to you I can see a very clear way to accomplish this.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s