How to Make-Over Your Bathroom Vanity DIY

by Blake Lockwood, Interior Designer @ Decor Snob

by Blake Lockwood

A DIY bathroom vanity offers a lot of room for creativity. If you are like me, you are itching for a DIY project all the time.

This week, our old bathroom vanity caught my eye. It had brass handles that were already starting to fade. It had honey-colored wood that doesn’t look good against the bathroom wall. Be sure to read my complete article on ideas on for making your own Vanity Mirror with Lights or check out my Vanity Makeup Mirrors Ideabook on Houzz.


I talked my wife into going with me to a home improvement store so we can turn it into something more stylish.


Here are the things we brought home from our trip to Lowes:


1. Oil-based Gel Wood Stains – This is the most important element of our DIY bathroom vanity. We wanted our vanity to look polished. Oil-based stains are perfect when up-cycling old furniture since they produce a lustrous finish.


2. Protective Satin Finish – We wanted to make sure that our bathroom vanity does not show signs of aging months after the project are done. We want to protect the wood from moisture and yellowing. We bought a satin polyurethane finish exactly for this purpose.


3. Paint Brushes – We bought mini-roller brushes, foam brushes, and wooden brushes that are inexpensive. We figured we won’t be able to use them after this project anyway.


4. Hinges and Handles – I did not like the brass handles of the old vanity so we bought new ones made from polished chrome.


5. Masking tape – Ideally, a painter’s step will do a better job, but we wanted to keep the costs to a minimum so we went for masking tape instead.


6. Sandpaper – We wanted to make sure that all of the old finish is removed before we started painting it with the new one. We found out later that the sandpaper did not do the job well. A sanding block would probably have done a better job.


7. Screwdriver – Obviously, you need one to remove old hardware.

Once we had all these items at home, I could not wait to start working on the project.



We started by:

1. Removing all the hinges and the ugly brass handles.The cupboard doors and the drawers went next.


2. The cleaning part was my least favorite mainly because I never liked the smell of our all-purpose cleaner.


3. I did the sanding and I did it a little too hard!. This should serve as a warning if you are planning to do your DIY bathroom vanity too.


4. 1 tablespoon of stain on every side of the cupboards was enough to cover all the areas that needed to be covered. I loved using those little foam rollers that we decided to do three coats instead of just two.


We made sure that no other part of the room gets stained so we used the masking tape and some old newspaper to protect those spots. The drying part tested my patience, but when we already applied the poly coat, I couldn’t help but be proud of the outcome! I was already beaming with excitement while we were putting on the new hardware.


It a fairly easy DIY project, but being the perfectionist that I am, I managed to make it more stressful than it should be. The result was worth all the sweat, though.


Read More from Blake:
30+ Outrageous Bathroom Sinks
4 Quick Tips to Organize your Bathroom Vanity
4 Tips for Choosing Bathroom Tile
Top 5 Bathroom Renovation Ideas
Trendy Bathroom Remodel Ideas
How to Make-Over Your Bathroom Vanity DIY
Ideas and Photos of Small Bathroom Makeovers
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8 Amazing Blinds for Sliding Doors


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