New Life for Thrift Store Vanity

4 Materials
$150
8 Hours
Medium
While remodeling one of our bathrooms, I found a wood (not particle board) vanity complete with sink and faucet at the local Habitat Restore for $85. With a little work, I knew it would be perfect for an upgraded look.
Habitat Restore Find
The structure of the piece was perfect. I removed the door and drawers and began the transformation.
Sponge, Degreaser and Elbow Grease
The entire piece was cleaned thorougly with Simple Green Cleaner/Degreaser.
Sanding Stage
The top was sanded with emphasis on some worn and water spots.
After Sanding
This is how the top looked after sanding. The water and worn spots needed more sanding.
Java Gel Stain
Java was the color that I wanted and General Finishes Gel Stain is my preferred wood coloring method.
Finished Top
To give the top an artistic look, the gel stain was painted on with heavier layering in areas sanded down.
Remaining Rehab
Remainder of the wood base was gel stained and peel/stick tiles added to the bottom of the drawers and floor.
Hardware
Rubbed bronze knobs and handle completed the base.
Waterlox Original Seal
To waterproof the top, 3 coats of Waterlox were applied with 24 hr drying between coats. I love Waterlox but it does require face/eye mask and good ventilation.
Waterlox Preview
The completed Waterlox phase gave the top a thick protective coating.
Bathroom - Before & After
Sink & faucet were installed and the project is finished. The old mirror medicine cabinet was replaced with a wooden shelf unit that matched the vanity and the bathroom is now updated.
Resources for this project:
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Frequently asked questions
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  2 questions
  • Lori Lori on Nov 25, 2017
    super nice! Curious, when you sanded and went to darker, did you have to sand all the way down to raw wood? I want to refinish my fireplace mantel and stair rails... not wanting to go to bare wood if I can help it.

  • Vicki Cobaugh Vicki Cobaugh on Nov 25, 2017
    Was the before picture the same vanity you purchased at the habitat store? The before pic looks like it has lawan on it, the other was wood right?

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