Tuesday, June 7, 2011

DIY refacing, and painting filing cabinets

 Now that Evan works from home the mini armoire we have in our "office/playroom" was not cutting it. Poor Ev was crammed into this thing. While its nice we can close the doors when company comes over, Ev's desk has exploded with papers everywhere.

This is where the filing cabinets/desk will be-we need to re attach the door, and refinish that valence too.

Evan's parents had two extra old metal filing cabinets laying around that we took off their hands. I started by sanding them down, then priming them with Rustoleum primer for spray paint. Next we decided to spray paint them a nice bright YELLOW to brighten up the space.  When I saw this DIY blog post I had to do it to spruce up the old filing cabinets, to give them some class!


Instead of using wallpaper I used some old fabric I had on hand instead.  I think it looks super fun now considering it was an old dingy filing cabinet. Here are the pics of the entire process.
Spray painting in process took about 4 cans to cover thoroughly 
 Next up was recovering the drawer fronts. I cut my fabric to size about an inch overlap on each edge, oh and remove the existing drawer hardware before you start obviously.
 I used laundry pins to hold it in place to align the pattern perfectly on top, next I used the ol' mod podge to glue it down to the drawer.
Once I got the main surface glued down I did the edges and used the laundry pins to secure it while it dried.
 Once it was secure on all edges and dried I applied a thick coat of mod podge to the top of the fabric. You want to do this to protect the fabric from stains,etc. It creates a plastic like protective covering on top.

The only thing I didn't like about how this turned out was the top drawer I didn't align the pattern straight across so it looks a lil off on the top left, but other than that I think its lined up okay.


 And can you believe this old thing used to be Evan's fan? We saw it in the spare closet at his parents house and I had to grab it once I saw it. It will look perfect on the desk we will create using the newly refinished filing cabinets. Stay tuned to see that!

People pay good money for these vintage looking fans, lucky us!


  1. Ooh it turned out super cute Carri! Awesome job!

  2. Oh man - I love the file cabinet! I can't wait to try that out for myself :).

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  4. Wow! Those look better than store bought file cabinets! I think the yellow paint really makes the cabinets pop. Overall I'd say this is a super fun project that I will definitely try!

  5. What type of ol' mod podge glue did you use gloss or matte, and did you use the fabric kind? This is my first DIY project. I have a four drawer filing cabinet, the paint around the drawers is fine but the drawers are a little scratched up so I'm only doing the fabric steps. One more question: did any of your filing cabinets have locks to them? I don't know if the lock will be about to come off, any tip on that?