Sarah Trop
Sarah Trop
  • Hometalker
  • Troy, NY

Broken Down Buffet

Sometimes repairing a furniture piece can cost more than buying something brand new and it can be more work than if you just built something from scratch. This buffet was one of those pieces. Linda reached out to us asking if we could some how make this buffet come back to life. It’s been in her family for generations and it had been living outside for quite a while so it needed MUCH love to make it usable (or even make it stand up for that matter). John looked at me like I was crazy when I said, sure we can.
Here is the buffet before. It’s not on its side because I wanted a before picture showing it at its worst, it’s on its side because the back leg was completely off so it wouldn’t even stand up.
broken down buffet
broken down buffet
The bottom frame was pretty much gone as was most of the bottom drawer. Veneer was peeling on the top and the sides of this piece.
broken down buffet
John had to rebuild the drawer by cutting new sides and a base.
broken down buffet
Then he had to rebuild the back leg sections and the bottom front of the buffet. We went with a decorative molding for the bottom of the buffet just to give it an extra pop of detailing.
On to the veneer damage. Some of the sides we replaced with all new wood.
See the new back leg, side, and back of the dresser. Oh and our dog Mel overseeing the project. lol
Then we peeled off the rest of the damaged veneer and used Bondo to repair it. This was a huge chore. Definitely not recommend for the novice upcycler. John came inside many time smelling of the stinky stuff with white hair from Bondo dust.
Then it was time to get our painting on. We used Benjamin Moore’s enamel black paint and lightly distressed it everywhere. We ended up putting new hardware on it as well.
And here is the surprising reveal!
broken down buffet
broken down buffet
broken down buffet

To see more:

Have a question about this project?

3 of 11 questions
  • Christine Harrington
    on Aug 12, 2017

    What was the final cost?
    • Gram
      on Mar 3, 2019

      final cost int opinion irrelevant,She brought back to life a family heirloom for geneyto come. Making this gem priceless

  • Vella Smith
    on Aug 15, 2017

    Why did you put one door grid upside down? Other than that, BEAUTIFULLY done.

    • Sandi Reilly
      on Oct 6, 2018

      No, those door grids come out and can be flipped around. They are pretty fragile too, so they wouldn't be able to be used as a shelf. 😎

  • Julie
    on Oct 2, 2018

    What about cutting off the damaged bottom and making a TV stand or credenza? Seems like a lot of these older pieces have damag on the bottom portions.

    • Emeekay
      on Dec 29, 2018

      One of the photos shows the panels removed from the doors. Probably just an error but none-the-less, a really great job with something most people would have taken to the dump.

Join the conversation

2 of 116 comments
  • Maureen McAteer Vasily
    on Feb 21, 2019

    What an amazing transformation! I thought the original had potential and am happy to see the results of your hard work.

  • Gail Layson
    on Apr 14, 2019

    It came out beautiful, my compliments to you two on a job well done.

Your comment...