1965 Bathroom Vanity Into Modern Shaker Style


I needed to remodel my downstairs bathroom since it is the most used by guests (even more than the powder room) and the old 1965 look was just not acceptable anymore. While the bathroom took about 3 weeks (just me working) the vanity only took me two days only because the paint needed to dry properly. I chose to keep the original vanity because it was in great shape and it fit the area perfectly. Plus my budget was blown because of a mold issue that took all my project budget and then some. So I had to get creative.
The eye sore from the 60s
The eye sore from the 60s
I removed all doors and chopped off the base of the cabinet since it was warped and moldy.
here's the old shell with putty
here's the old shell with putty
Prep before paint involved wood putty to cover holes and dings of 40+years of use. Don't forget to sand the surface to even out things. I added modern legs to the base.
framing the door fronts
framing the door fronts
Next step was to apply 1in x 1/4 in strips onto the door fronts. Simply glue them with liquid nails. Don't forget to sand them for a smooth finish and add wood putty to cover gaps before painting
vanity after paint
vanity after paint
Here's the painted frame. Looks better already.
door fronts after paint
door fronts after paint
Then I painted the doors. Be sure to cover any holes from the old door pulls unless you are keeping it the same.
1965 bathroom vanity into modern shaker style, bathroom ideas
I chose butcher block as the surface for the countertop because of cost and because I wanted a farmhouse style. Be sure to stain it and seal it with several coats of waterproof sealant to avoid water damage. Be careful when choosing the sealer because some can "yellow" the wood finish.
1965 bathroom vanity into modern shaker style, bathroom ideas
Here's the final product after I installed the butcher block ($120 only because of the color), new sink (only $30 bucks), door pulls (about $20). Paint (less than 1 qt of semigloss paint-$15). Note: I already had the paint from a previous project.
from another angle
from another angle
Here's another angle. The new faucets were my little splurge ($99) but there are some great faucets out there for about 25 bucks if budget is an issue. I hope you liked this project. It was a lot of fun to see the final product.
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Tatiana (amigas4all.com)

Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!

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Have a question about this project?

3 of 19 questions
  • Erin Cronenwett
    on Dec 28, 2018

    did you install new door hinges?

    • Tatiana (amigas4all.com)
      on Dec 29, 2018

      No. I actually painted the old ones. But these are not expensive to buy. My budget was tight and i had the spray paint already.

  • Jean
    on Dec 30, 2018

    Did you do anything with the other part of the "cabinet" that was on the left side of the sink? Did you re-purpose it for something else?

    • Tatiana (amigas4all.com)
      on Dec 31, 2018

      Yes. I have a closet under the staircase and it fit perfectly lying sideways and i was able to organize all my seasonal decor in the different slots. I havent thought of any other ideas for it other than that. Im sure it could make a great cabinet since it's so tall but for now it's my organization cubbie. Cheers!

  • Mary ann
    on Mar 3, 2019

    Hi, you have the same ugly cabinets I do, love your outcome, I was wondering why you didn't do the drawers, is possible to do the drawers the same way, I want to do my kitchen cabinets which are the same ugly cabinets but I want to do the drawers too.


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2 of 133 comments
  • Debra McMenamin
    on Jan 3, 2019

    Beautiful! I love the update!

  • Alicia Ranberg
    on Mar 21, 2019

    I love how you removed that tall cabinet to make it appear so much roomier! You may miss the storage a little, but aesthetics makes up for it!


    Making the counter straight gives you a clean line for symmetry and visually lengthening the room. Awesome makeover!! 💖

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