DIY Upcycled Computer Desk From a Broken Foyer Table

Jennifer Maker
by Jennifer Maker
8 Materials
6 Hours
Have you ever seen a piece of old furniture left on a curb and wondered if you could make something amazing out of it? We found a broken foyer table left out for days and turned it into the perfect computer desk, complete with a pretty chalk paint finish, resurfaced wood top, a lighted keyboard tray, tidy cable grommets, and a decorated privacy panel. We did it, and you can, too! View the full post with all photos and directions (even the travel posters) here!
This is the old table we started with. The drawers were jammed, the surface was scratched and marred, and one of the legs broken and ready to come off. I think the poor thing had been thrown at one point. Oh, and it was too tall to be a desk—it was meant for a foyer. We found ours abandoned by a neighbor, but you could get yours as a recycle center or thrift store.
First, we removed several inches from the bottom to bring it down to desk height.
I painted everything but the top of the desk with cherry red chalk paint, then distressed it a bit. Red is my favorite color! (Tip: I made my own chalk paint by adding calcium carbonate to the perfect color of flat paint. It was easy!)
We added a front privacy panel to the desk and covered it with vintage travel posters of place I've visited. Copies of all these vintage posters are available at my blog.
I stenciled the words "Travel Desk" above the privacy panel just for fun (I am a travel writer).
We stripped off the bad finish, sanded it down, and re-stained it a light oak to match the hardwood floors in the room.
We removed the broken drawers and installed a long keyboard tray that slides in and out, with room for two keyboards. We also put LED lights under the desk to light the keyboard area.
We installed two of these plastic cable grommets on the back edge of the desk so cables could be funneled through and out of the way.
Here is the finished computer desk! It's everything I hoped for and so much more. It's a personal, one-of-a-kind desk, customized just for me. If you're curious about the space BEHIND the desk, that is my converted closet office nook. You can learn more about both the desk and the office nook on my blog.
Suggested materials:
  • Old foyer (console) table   (The curb, recycle center, thrift store)
  • Valspar Cherry Pickin' flat paint   (Lowes)
  • Calcium Carbonate (to make chalk paint)   (Local pottery store, Amazon)
See all materials
Jennifer Maker
Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!
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