Painted Vintage China Cabinet

This is a Depression Era china cabinet that had seen better days. It has gorgeous lines but with few exceptions the veneer and mouldings were in terrible condition.
After. Napoleonic Blue, Graphite & Cream.
Nevertheless, the structure itself was sound. It offers lots of storage inside the cabinet as well as a drawer.
I spotted the cabinet at a thrift store. I noticed other shoppers were drawn to it, but one by one they passed it by. I did, too! But I couldn't get it out of my mind, so I went back and made the purchase. It sat for over a year in my entryway while I decided what to do with it.
I finally decided on a color scheme of Napoleonic Blue with accents in Graphite. The interior is painted in Cream.
I made rough repairs, but left some of the imperfections as-is. I think the finished piece is regal but with a cottage charm.
I lightly distressed the details and added some subtle gold highlights to the decorative moulding and hardware.
There are still dings and dents, but the new finish will give this piece a second chance.
I painted the hardware in Graphite and applied two coats of wax. I then added gold highlights.
Just to give an idea of the amount of storage space, I was able to display a 12-piece china set inside of the cabinet for the photo shoot. The china is from the same era as the cabinet.
Additional storage is available in the drawer.
Additional photos are available on my blog.

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


Have a question about this project?

3 of 4 questions
  • Hannah Elsenheimer
    on Dec 1, 2016

    I am painting a rocking chair and would like to kind of mimic the look you gave to this china cabinet, would you mind giving me some advice on how to do it and what materials i may need?

  • Dia4829409
    on Jul 7, 2017

    How did you use the Graphite Paint and what color of wax I love this piece
    • Patricia
      on Jul 10, 2017

      Thank you Dialingdi. I used Napoleonic blue with dark wax and glaze for the main portion of the china cabinet. The center piece is painted in Graphite and the interior is painted in Cream.
  • Dia4829409
    on Jul 7, 2017

    I love you blue piece how did you use the Graphite Paint and what color of waxk you very much

Join the conversation

4 of 33 comments
  • Katherine
    on Mar 1, 2016

    I really love this color! I have a cherry china cabinet that my father-in-law made for me about 20 years ago and I'm going to paint it because it's become rather boring to me. The finish is perfect but no longer what I like. I think everyone should do what they want with their own furniture and I thank you for sharing what you've done with yours! Gorgeous!

    • Patricia
      on Mar 1, 2016

      @Katherine Thank you so much Katherine! Good luck with your project. I hope you post it to Hometalk so we can see the finished project. :-)

  • Marj MRC Creations
    on Oct 24, 2018

    I realize this is an older project, but I have to say just how much I love what you did to it. It's gorgeous!

    • Patricia
      on Oct 25, 2018

      Thank you Marj! It was one of my favorite pieces.

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