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Trash to Treasure Furniture Makeover

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Furniture makeover showing how to transform a piece of furniture found in curbside trash into a beautiful piece of functional furniture for your home.

I am one of those people who is not afraid to stop my car on the side of the road to pick up other people’s cast-offs.  I enjoy the process of a good trash to treasure furniture makeover. I find the hunt very adventurous and love transforming my finds into functional pieces.  Best of all – it doesn’t cost me a thing.

I found this hollowed out dresser in a field on the way to the supermarket.   Lovely, isn’t she?  She has nice lines. I saw potential.

furniture-before-and-after-trash-to-treasure-makeoverFurniture Makeover Using Dollar Store Baskets

Trash to Treasure Decorating

The transformation begins with a trip to the dollar store for 17 white plastic baskets.  I would have loved wicker baskets, but 17 of them would be a bit pricey for my budget.

White Organizing Baskets

Also needed:  my computer, printer, and card-stock to make some labels. I  chose a font size that would fit in the label holders I found years ago.  I cut out a piece of acetate from a transparency sheet to use as my see-thru cutting template.

how to make tags and labels using your printer the easy way

I made vintage looking label holders and labels.  If you don’t have any label holders you can see my post on how-to make wipe-off labels.

how to make pretty labels using your computer and printer

 I used a pair of pliers to attach a label holder to the front of each basket.

how to attach labels to baskets and boxes

Variation: To see a way to attach a label without one of these label holders, click here: How To Attach Labels to Baskets and Boxes for Organizing

I cut plywood to fit into the hollow dresser to create shelves.  There were 8 sections and a small lip where the drawers used to be that I screwed each piece of plywood into.  I then gave it a coat of white paint.  This is a rough piece.  Even after sanding and buffing the front edges still looked raw with the plywood and screws showing.

Before and After Furniture Makeovers

I cleaned it up as best I could and figured it is going to go in my mudroom so it doesn’t have to look perfect, just functional.  Lots of sanding needed.

Before and After Furniture Makeovers

Trash to Treasure Furniture Makeover: After

Trash to Treasure Decorating Before and After Furniture Makeover for Mudrooms

I also bought white thumb tacks at the Dollar Store and used two different colors of ribbon from my stash to hide the ugly front edge of the dresser.  I measured the ribbon and placed the purple on top of a wider white grosgrain.  I attached the ribbon to the dresser with the thumb tacks.  I think I am going to add more tacks, so it looks like nail-head trim, but I ran out.  I will need to take another trip to the Dollar Store to get more.

ribbon and tack detail on trash to treasure

ribbon and tack detailing

This dresser sees a lot of action as it is right in the door from our garage where we enter the house. It is where we place keys, mail, library books, handbags, backpacks, etc.

I have the baskets labeled – Sunglasses, Goggles, Sunscreen, Mittens, Hats…the things we use on a daily basis that I want easily accessible, but I don’t want to see laying around.

After Trash to Treasure dresser

dollar store basket organizing

I love how it came out.  Not too bad for something I found on the side of the road. I love a good trash to treasure furniture makeover don’t you?

Trash to Treasure After

Budget Furniture Makeover

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  1. This is just wonderful, what a great idea, you could even do this in any room of the house! I’m now a follower, now I have to go check out some of your other projects that you have done!


  2. You are awesome! That looks wonderful. What a wonderful thing to have in a craft room. PLUS, you reused trash and made the world a bit prettier.

    1. Hi Mindy-
      M favorite projects are the ones that I re-use, re-purpose, or re-cycle. I love coming up with attractive, yet functional ideas with trash and cast-offs – and as you mentioned making the world a bit prettier at the same time.