Hutch Makeover

Finally! Finally it’s done (um, eight months after I bought it?) and finally I’m sharing (six months later after I finished it…sorry!) This hutch was a beast to refinish and at times I wanted to forget it existed, which is probably why it took so long. And winter, there’s that, too. And only having an hour or two at a time to work on it. BUT, it did get done. And I’m so happy.

before and after

I was going to have a reveal post, and a detailed post, but considering it’s taken me six months to take pictures, we’ll just condense it.


The condition of the hutch was not good when I bought it. Well, it was functioning fine, but the paint job was 1. ugly 2. awful. It was peeling, cracking and had drips. So I started by scraping and sanding and scraping and patching and sanding. But there was still paint chipping off, especially by the moldings on the drawers. The last thing I wanted was my new paint job chipping off so I decided to strip it. Let’s just say I wish I hadn’t. It was awful, and I couldn’t get everything off completely, so it was an uneven surface all over. Hindsight is 20/20, as they say. I did the best I could then gave up. More sanding didn’t help much either so I decided to coat the uneven parts with spackle (I used MH Ready Patch – and used about 1/2 of the quart, which is quite a lot) and then sanded it down. I did a couple applications (spackle, then sand) – aka spackled the crap out of it – and I was pretty pleased with my solution, it was a pretty even surface! Finally I could prime then paint it. I used Rustoleum’s enamel paint in gloss, which I love because it’s self-leveling and is a hardy finish so I wouldn’t have to put a poly on.

1st backing

To the back of the shelves I added paper since the previous paint job was so drippy and it saved me time sanding/stripping. First I used a gorgeous floral paper from Paper Source, but it just didn’t live up to my vision. You couldn’t really see any of the detail of the paper, and after I already glued it on I discovered that even though the pattern was the same, the sheen of the gold was different – which you can see in the photo above (the upper right four were a shiny gold). Wah wah.


Then I found this bamboo wrapping paper at Home Goods and I loved it, and how it tied into the navy blue of the rug in the family room right next to the hutch. Perhaps the greek key trim on the hutch and the bamboo look clash and are from different time periods, but whatever, I like it. The darker background makes the stuff on the shelves pop more, too.


after_cup pulls

So, the hardware – I’m in love. I searched a good long time before I found cheaply priced cup pulls that also had cheaply priced knobs I liked in the same finish so I could be sure they matched. I did NOT want to add spray painting brand new hardware to my to-do list for this project. I ended up buying the Giagni cup pulls and cone knobs from in satin brass. I just spray painted all the existing hinges gold, which matched pretty well – and you can’t see much of them.


While the stuff on the shelves is easier to see without the doors on, I love the details on the doors so I put them back on. I replaced three panes of glass as they were super old school and bubbled out around the panes while the 4th had been replaced and flat. Instead of using the old wood trim to hold the panes in – I wasn’t about to hammer a bunch of nails around all the glass I just bought, no thanks – I used a bead of silicone around the edges, and it holds tight. The doors are old and I added another layer of paint to them, so they stick but I don’t use them all the time. And because they stick some of the paint has come off where they rub, but you can’t see it unless they’re open. Ah vell.

after_desk area

One of my favorite features of the hutch is the secret desk area that folds down. It looks like a drawer – but no! It’s a desk! Though to be honest I don’t really use it down much. Ok, fine, I’ve never used it as a desk. Maybe some day. I love the door in there too, though I haven’t figured out what to keep in there – something super secret, but I don’t know what yet. Probably just candy to hoard from the boys. I spray painted it a dusty pink/lilac. Just because.

after_too long screw

Also, a tip/solution: the screws that came with the pulls was too long for the width of all the drawer faces – but a smaller one was too short – so I added a couple small washers that filled the gap perfectly.

And that’s it! It is done, finally. I’m super happy with it, and haven’t even filled the drawers and cabinets yet! Though I try to black out the period of time I spent working on it.

after_from side







I totally had a close up photo of the greek key trim at the top but it’s disappeared – boo. That, along with the already said super spy secret desk area and the panes on the glass doors, are my favorite parts. Also, styling shelves is not easy. They look fine, and I’m pretty lazy so they probably won’t change for a while, but I’m sure they could use some help. I probably also need to put stuff on top of the cabinet as well – though super hard to dust up there? (and therefore will almost never happen?) Maybe my dream of collecting cake plates will catch on. White paint makes everything better, no?



14 thoughts on “Hutch Makeover

  1. Angela and I just read this and saw the beautiful piece. We said “you’re ridiculous! (ly) talented. I think this needs to be featured on #apartmenttherapy

  2. This turned out fabulous! I love how the blue background looks too. I’ve never seen such a detailed piece of furniture with that hidden cubby and beautiful glass doors. Kudos on giving it new life!
    Although I got super sad seeing that YHL book in there. Are you as devasted as I am?

  3. This is gorgeous except for those gold knobs. They make the whole thing look very cheap. Silver or black would have complemented the hutch beautifully and made it look classy; this way, it looks like K-Mart.

    • I definitely don’t see K-Mart with the gold hardware, as gold is very luxe and classic (and very on-trend these days), however, it is my makeover and not yours so of course you may have done things differently. Thanks for stopping by.

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