Asked on Mar 30, 2015

Antique sewing machine makeover - keep as is, or change to a vanity?

This antique sewing machine table was gutted and then painted a soft gloss black in oil. The layers were thin so the wood grain showed through. The drawers were oil and left natural. A new top was cut so that it could be used as a desk or a table. I wonder if it would get more interest if we added and antique mirror and changed it into a dressing table vanity. What do you think?
q antique sewing machine makeover keep as is or change to a vanity, painted furniture, repurposing upcycling
q antique sewing machine makeover keep as is or change to a vanity, painted furniture, repurposing upcycling
q antique sewing machine makeover keep as is or change to a vanity, painted furniture, repurposing upcycling
q antique sewing machine makeover keep as is or change to a vanity, painted furniture, repurposing upcycling
  17 answers
  • Susan Susan on Mar 30, 2015
    I would leave it as is so beautiful how did you get the iron work so smooth

  • Gloria tulip Gloria tulip on Mar 30, 2015
    Would make a beautiful vanity. Certainly would be the right height and with those small but deep drawers such a nice place to put small items. Could use as a writing table - also just the right height and drawers to put your writing materials.

  • Linda T Linda T on Mar 30, 2015
    Definitely keep as is. SOOO very beautiful.

  • Lori T Lori T on Mar 30, 2015
    I like it the way it is.

  • Fuchsiafairy Fuchsiafairy on Mar 30, 2015
    I agree with the others. Keep it like it is and use it for a desk or utility table. It would be great with w 3-way vanity mirror.

  • Duv310660 Duv310660 on Mar 30, 2015
    I have an ancient Monkey Wards machine, all parts intact, bowed-wood drawers. I use it to display a ridiculous over-the-top Fitz and Floyd soup terrine. The sewing drawers hold pencils, various rarely used remotes, and cat toys. All-in-all, it takes up a good chunk of floor space and provides essentially zero functionality. But I do really love it and regularly give it TLC. When people ask me 'what should I do with this piece', I always wonder if their home needs an area to provide a specific function or organization? - do they just love the piece as a personal family heirloom, or is it both? If you can answer that question, then you'll know what to do.

    • Spikecatz Spikecatz on Feb 12, 2022

      I just found your so very 'on point' comment. How a piece is going to be used or what a true need for it to be, does simplify it's journey! I use this in my life on many different levels. You had me nodding my head , yes with clarity.

  • Valerie McGlothlin Valerie McGlothlin on Mar 30, 2015
    I really like it as is but why not add a mirror? Might get more use, and it's got drawers, too.

  • Debi Mcclain Debi Mcclain on Mar 31, 2015
    My husband did a similar thing to an old machine we found He used a board cut from old growth trees so it is one board wide mine looks beautiful too

    This would be a great piece for a hall entryway. Could combine with a wall mirror, tall flowers, antique books, lamp, large basket on treadle, etc.

    Could also be used as a sofa table behind sofa to hold lamp and decor items. This is an incredibly versatile piece!

  • Ruthie Socash Ruthie Socash on Mar 31, 2015
    Leave it as it is.. Its beautiful... Add a framed mirror above it.. Throw some greens on top of the table.. Whoever did this, is very crafty..

  • Pat Mountfort Pat Mountfort on Mar 31, 2015
    I have also seen them used as a bathroom vanity with a vessel sink.

  • Tina klingler Tina klingler on Mar 31, 2015
    I'm in love with a vanity...probably get a lot more use...make it into a vanity, old hollywood vanity

  • Nitad Nitad on Apr 07, 2015
    Dressing table add a mirror. Beautiful job

  • Kbee Kbee on Apr 10, 2015
    Is the sewing machine still in it? Working or not I'd love to have it! Anything can be a vanity, this is a rare find as is!

  • Rockbiter Rockbiter on Apr 11, 2015
    keep it, it's in better shape than mine so know you have a gem in good shape. Repurposing it will only make it lose great value of such a great piece. If you want a vanity sell that for a good chunk of cash for a vanity piece. Just don't deprive this world of it's beautiful relic's. My grandma who sews (nicer than mine mind you) uses hers for an updated sewing machine and her needs. if any changes are to be done for usefulness, realize what it's made for and how great it is for that. Heavy duty holding with nice stow away for the bulky device. It isn't made to hold dainty objects, It is an item made when pride in woodwork was more prevalent. A vanity can be particle board and still work because particle board is crummy and cheap, and ok for decorative needs. Does it still flip open even though gutted?

    • Porta Verde Studio Porta Verde Studio on Apr 14, 2015
      @Rockbiter the sewing machine and all the parts have already been gutted and the top has been replaced so using it as a sewing machine isn't viable.

  • Susie Susie on Apr 13, 2015
    Beautiful but I'd keep as is - you could always hand a mirror behind - then if you change your mind you won't have holes in the top! Nice job.