Color change to an antique display cabinet

by Demeetra
Can you advise on how I can change the color of this cabinet?
Old English antique display cabonet over 90 years old circa Victorian times. Its also up for sale for euro 500.
  30 answers
  • Cash Cash on Jul 14, 2016
    I have one, I wouldn't change it its a great reminder of where I came from, & it reminds me how my father, loved me, for me to be the owner of such fine furniture from old, if you paint it, you're loss the value of your great piece.AM JUST SAYING, TREASURE YOUR LOVESONE THINGS SO YOU MAY PASS IT TO SOMEONE, YOU TEACH ABOUT ATINQUE'S.
  • Jim L Jim L on Jul 14, 2016
    Oh my word! Why would you want to change the color of this beautiful old cabinet?! If you just can't stand it the way that it is, change the color of the interior. This cabinet is much to pretty and valuable to "mess" with the finish!
  • Chrissy Chrissy on Jul 14, 2016
    If painting it is what you want to do, Try Annie Sloan chalk paint. It is easy to use and no prep required. If you don't want to paint it and a quick change is your goal , try using fabric or paint on the inner back boards to add a pop of color. I have done both to antique pieces and both look great.
  • Johnchip Johnchip on Jul 14, 2016
    It is just too dark with century old build up. Clean or Strip off the old wax, varnish and crud. Lightly stain it with an oil product, let dry and use a danish oil or bees wax rub on compound to keep it 'clear' and lighter.
  • Tricia Jackson Jones Tricia Jackson Jones on Jul 14, 2016
    Formby's make a great product that will take off some of the old dark stain and you can coat it with their Tung Oil to protect it. I have done this several times and it just wakes the piece up without changing the original nature of the piece.
  • Nancy Stanberry-Ktiyeb Nancy Stanberry-Ktiyeb on Jul 14, 2016
    Formby's to clean it, place glass mirrors in the back of the shelves to brighten it and better showcase your display.
  • Cha8468604 Cha8468604 on Jul 14, 2016
    It probably has a shellac finish on it. Over time the shellac traps dirt and dust and then darkens. To mess with the original finish, however, will probably ruin its value. If you don't care about that, use steel wool and acetone and the old finish will come right off and leave the wood much lighter.
  • Olivia McCullough Olivia McCullough on Jul 14, 2016
    I would NOT paint. I use a citrus base stripper one dark pieces. Sand it smooth and give a tung oil finish.
  • Ali Kay Ali Kay on Jul 15, 2016
    I personally would give it a nice black base and do a barn red over that, distressing it to let the black come thrust. Or maybe a. Distressed eggshell /French vanilla color. Kinda depends on how the rest of your decor.
  • Annie Annie on Jul 15, 2016
    I agree about the Formby's Wood Cleaner. It takes away years of dirt. You may be quite surprised what is under the surface. It's really lovely and I'd avoid paint.
  • Suzy kerr Suzy kerr on Jul 15, 2016
    I think you should do whatever you want to with the piece to bring it into the 21st century. I would clean it and try bleaching it and if you don't like it - paint it with chalk paint and enjoy it. Forget the mirrors in back - if you paint it - put another color in the back or wallpaper it. Don't let your furniture make you a prisoner - it is for you in your time.
  • April Monaco April Monaco on Jul 15, 2016
    I think the above folks gave you really good advise, I like murphy's soap, wash well, tape off and then I think a beautiful dusty grey with white on the wood holding the glass. Annie Sloans is very nice paint and you won't have to strip it.
  • Beverley Holland Beverley Holland on Jul 15, 2016
    Perhaps a cloth on the inside back after cleaning the wood. Then , if not satisfied, paint?
  • Sophia,M.,McConnery Sophia,M.,McConnery on Jul 15, 2016
    I like old wood.Keep it natural if you can.Clean,sand lightly with 220 grit sand paper,and fill any damage with sawdust and wood glue!Get a stain you really like.Finish it up with the liquid plastic so it is easy to clean!
  • Martha Bliss Martha Bliss on Jul 15, 2016
    My china and buffet were old (bought 2nd hand about 30 years ago) so spruced them up with several coats of Behr paint/primer and lightened up the inside too. It's up to you to paint a true antique which reduces its antique value. Or clean up the exterior as suggested and maybe paint the interior back to give it a jolt of color.
    • See 1 previous
    • Demeetra Demeetra on Jul 16, 2016
      Martha thanks a lot. This is exactly what I want to do with it. All my dinning room furniture are light birch and I want the cabinet to match as close as possible. The thing is I am in Greece and I cannot get the paint brands you used. so any suggestions on color names and texture?
  • Cindi Buckles Thomas Cindi Buckles Thomas on Jul 15, 2016
    To paint something that has a shiny appearance, do I sand first then paint. It's my old desk from my childhood and my grandson wants to paint it blue. Thanks
    • Elizabeth Dion Elizabeth Dion on Jul 15, 2016
      I use a paint deglosser (Lowes) or the TSP designed to prepare and clean wood before painting.
  • Sharon Carson Dunham Sharon Carson Dunham on Jul 15, 2016
    After many moves, my mahogany China closet from the late fifties was scratched, badly scarred, and in general, not very attractive. Sandpaper, oil based primer (mahogany is a bleeder) and paint transformed it to a pice I can now enjoy.
  • Jan Diolosa Jan Diolosa on Jul 15, 2016
    It is such a lovely cabinet I wouldn't change a thing.
  • Marie Alesi Caruana Marie Alesi Caruana on Jul 15, 2016
    As suggested I would put a wood cleaner on it, no paint, then put doilies hanging over the shelves to brighten up the interior. You need to add some pretty pottery or any larger display even one with color. In my opinion the items there now are too tiny to attract attention.
  • Pat Miller Pat Miller on Jul 15, 2016
    I have to agree with Jan Diolosa and Marie Caruana. A beautiful piece.
  • Barbara underwood Barbara underwood on Jul 15, 2016
    I also have an antique China cabinet and I would never paint it. However, to brighten it up, I am considering inserting panels in back of each shelf. I did same thing for a bookcase in den. Inserts can be made from heavy stock paper and covered in a favorite material or decorative paper. I have not found a pattern yet. This way, you can change the appearance without painting.
  • Joa6595835 Joa6595835 on Jul 16, 2016
    Distress look with chalk paint. I would use a white chalk paint and distress areas that would have normal wear then paint the inside a different color like maybe a pink. Good luck!
  • Jeannie Jeannie on Jul 16, 2016
    It really depends where you plan to showcase this piece. If you are going to sell it, I would leave the finish as is. It's a golden oldie, for sure.
  • D fuhrman D fuhrman on Jul 16, 2016
    i agree with leaving it alone and putting some beautiful wall paper on the back wall. it's such a pretty piece.
  • Agathe Beaulieu Agathe Beaulieu on Jul 16, 2016
  • Barbara underwood Barbara underwood on Jul 16, 2016
    You are right and reflecting the china would be beautiful. I would have to measure. I suppose I could by those on the internet.
  • Dwi5997718 Dwi5997718 on Jul 17, 2016
    please sell this treasure in it's current condition. please don't paint it. use that money to find a habitat store find and paint that. You won't have to tape off the glass if you slather the glass with Vaseline and the sprayed on paint will wipe off. Yaa!
  • Demeetra Demeetra on Jul 17, 2016
    I will try just changing the interior at first with some nice wallpaper although now there is material covering the back and shelves. I cannot take the material off as it is one piece and the shelves cannot be removed. So I will try piece by piece and see how it goes. I was thinking of something like "gold ochra" to complement the outside stain. Will posst what I do and see how it goes. Thanks for all the tips.
  • Aco5608460 Aco5608460 on Jul 17, 2016
    I would mirror the interior, or wall paper it. The exterior seems to be in excellent condition. I would not touch it. You would not want to decrease the value of an antique.