Let’s Get Hutched

Lately I’ve been working on two projects….1.  the office bathroom…and b. this hutch / china cabinet / dining furniture piece thingie (yes, that’s a technical term).

Yesterday I went fabric shopping…

And when I go fabric shopping, I get inspired to get other stuff done.  It’s weird.  It’s like a Jolt Cola to my to-do list.

This piece is perfect for me for a million reasons.  First reason I love it – the cost.  I only paid $32 for it.  Yup.  Goodwill has senior discounts and I fully exploit my mother on Tuesdays.  So the original price was $50…marked down to $40…with a 25% senior discount…for this old lady :)

The second reason?  it’s a little curvy, a little ornate, but not too much…the lines are strong and the trim is thick…it’s like a nice thick piece of bacon :)

I love the top and I love the detail on the doors that mimics the lines.  I also love that it’s not too deep but really tall.  Perfect.

I do not however love the back.  It’s not purty at all. I also wish it was solid wood.  It’s not.

So this is kinda some info on prepping a veneered piece of furniture.

When prepping any other solid piece for paint, you simply focus on one thing – making the surface with enough grit to get the primer and paint to stick.

When prepping veneered pressboard or anything that has just a thin piece of wood on top – it’s important to grit it up, smooth out divots BUT not sand too deep.  And be careful on corners and edges – because they might already be worn enough and further sanding can expose the non-solid wood below.

After you have the entire piece done, it’s very similar to painting a normal piece.  You want to wipe it down completely – eliminating any dust.  Make sure you pay special attention to corners…and don’t forget the flat vertical surfaces.

After it is dry, lay it out for priming.

This is my favorite spray primer.  Zinsser Oil-based Primer cover stain is da bomb dot com…it’s the bacon on my BLT…not that there is anything wrong with tomatoes or lettuce…and heavens knows mayonaisse is like milk from the breast of Jesus.

Then paint as normal.

So as my piece was drying from all those coats, I went to work in the dining room.

As you may recall, the dining room has some storage issues…or should I say, I have a hording problem.  same difference.

This little wall had two bookcases with the white dishes in it.  And as much as Will left them all alone, the dishes taunted his little friends with urges to touch, break and throw.  So I decided that making the house kid-friendly didn’t necessarily just mean for my kid.

And the console that we removed from Will’s room (we formally used it as his changing table) and put in the dining room, well, it was just too small for the big wall.  That wall is very wide and needed a piece with a little more substance.

Plus, if I put the tall piece on that big wall, I could balance out the dark brown by putting them on opposite sides.  Of course, that tall piece would provide more closed storage…so I could remove the bookshelves…so moving the console made the most sense.

See how unbalanced the entire thing looked?

And the mirrors would have to go too…since they would be wider than the console.

The overall view…


And this is the view from the front door…not cute.

So after I removed the bookcases and moved the console, instantly it looked better to me…and I still had balance.

Okay – now that you kinda got the dining room framework…

there was one thing I needed to do before putting the hutch in place.

The back was coming off.  Boo.  Hiss.  Spit.  (not really cause I don’t spit in the house)

Don’t worry.  It’s not anything my staple gun can’t handle.

Okay – so I moved in the painted piece to the tall wall and I love it.

The hardware is still drying so this is the best after shot I have right now.

Do you like it?

The outside is painted just plain white.  It’s the pastel white base…ultra white base with no tint.  The inside I did in Martha’s Kerry Blue…it actually looks more denim blue vs the teal color it looks like in the photo.

I also conned Jer into bringing up the crazy ornate mirror we inherited from his great aunt.  I think I might repaint it a fun color – because the gold is a little too much.

I think I’ll probably wait till I figure out the fabric for drapes and possible chair cushions before picking the color.

Oh and I still plan on sprucing up this side of the room too…adding a couple wine bottle racks, curtains and curtain rods.

kinda like this:

So that’s where it’s at.  Wish me luck with finishing up the hardware!

Oh and hopefully by the end of next week I’ll have this place looking spruced up for a juicy styling and finished hutch post.  oohhh!  enter a visual of me doing the bike pump move while simultaneously kicking my legs out for joy here :)



  1. says

    It turned out beautifully–we just met our Realtor this week to start looking for a house and I am dreaming of a legit dining room, so this was the perfect post to start with this morning! I read that you were able to take the glass out, did you need to do anything else to it to clean it up and/or have any tips about dealing with the glass in general? This always seems like the most daunting part to me.

    Great eye, Katie!

    • says

      Well, this piece was definitely easy to remove the glass – but sometimes, it isn’t. It’s part of what to check for when purchasing a Goodwill piece…or any piece really. And when I took mine out, I cleaned it with anti-bacterial windex before putting it back in…it was FILTHY. If it has any chips or cracks, you may want to price to replace it because it would be a shame if anyone got hurt closing your hutch because of broken glass. In the end, most glass can be left in the piece as you paint it but you will want to clean the extra paint off as soon as the paint dries (within that first week) because if you wait too long, it hardens and is a pain.
      Other than that – happy painting!
      xo – kb

  2. Kelly Gross says

    Nice Job! My husband found a hutch like this on the side of the road right before we got married and I have been thinking of repainting it since- so this is inspiring! My only thought is that I am not a fan of white and cream (the trim in the room) together- does that matter? Its probably just me.
    Well- anyways, way to go! Especially with a child to look after!

  3. Lindsay B says

    Yay! I’ve been looking forward to this post. It’s looking great! I can’t wait to see it completely finished. I’m looking for a similar piece for my house. I don’t seem to have very much luck at thrift stores. I’ll just keep looking, I guess!

  4. says

    I LOVE the color of the walls in your dining room! PLEASE share so that I can copy you.

    Also, the fabric/print on your banner… I totally have at least 2 yards of it because I thought “that’s so pretty, I must buy it.”

  5. sallie says

    looks great! really wish i saw this before i painted a target bookcase. i thought i could omit the sanding step if i used oil-based primer. not smart. it’s holding up to normal wear but when the 16 month-old throws golf balls at it, it takes paint off. sigh. also, i wish i’d known about this spray primer.

  6. says

    Looks great Katie! I recently painted a buffet from Ikea and used regular oil-based primer because I thought it would cover the best, but I’ll have to try the spray primer next time.

    I found your blog through YHL and I have to say I love reading you every day!

  7. Annie says

    Katie, I love your blog for your great sense of style and your great sense of humor. I appreciate and respect that you are a Christian and that hopefully guides some of what you post here (that is also one of the reasons I read). And I do realize you have had several commenters above say it was the funniest thing they’ve heard in a while, but I have to tell you I was hurt and dismayed at your comment “and heavens knows mayonaisse is like milk from the breast of Jesus.” Doesn’t HE deserve better than to be the punchline of a joke? Shouldn’t we, as Christians, not follow the world’s way of taking His name in vain? Still love ya, and I know is your site to do with what you choose, but I hope not to read anything like that again on your super awesome blog.

    • says

      You know, I think that Jesus would laugh at that line. Maybe you don’t think so but I think that our heavenly Father gave each of us a pretty awesome sense of humor…He invented it…and I’m not making fun of Jesus – I’m saying He is amazing and so is mayonaise. Of course, to each his or her own! Much much love right back at ya!
      xo – kb

  8. Katherine R. says

    Have been looking forward to this post…I’m always trolling for the perfect hutch on Craigslist. Love what you did with it. :)

  9. cat says

    I love the new layout- very nice! I too wish the hutch unit were about 4″ taller, maybe with some chunky feet or something??, but I’m sure it will look different when you have it all filled and styled up purrty. Then the drop down from the bluish wall paint to the bottom of the blue hutch paint won’t even been seen. Can’t wait to see what you pick out for curtains!

  10. Kristen says

    This looks amazing, Katie! Make you wonder how many people throw away furniture like this thinking it’s junk… never knowing the full potential. You have definitely inspired me to visit my local goodwill this weekend!!

    • says

      There is a discount fabric store in Stone Mountain and it has $2 a yard sales where pretty much every fabric is $2 or $1 a yard. It rocks my world :)
      xo – kb

  11. Denise says

    Katie – flip the bottom doors inside out, add trim to the outer perimeter of each, and then paint them out to match everything else. You’d get the clean lines you want and might feel better about the entire piece. I know, unsolicited advice, but I just thought I’d put a bug in your ear about that.

    You’ve done a great job with this, thanks for sharing. I have so many pieces of furniture to paint and I appreciate the plethera of information you’ve posted over the years.

    • says

      Haha..weird minds think alike…I had already considered it – but the doors are extra funky making it impossible to do that….but yeah, it would have rocked if it was possible. I even thought about replacing the doors completely – but if I do, it’ll have to happen down the line when other projects don’t take priority (aka all our money).
      xo – kb

  12. meganleiann says

    This might be my favorite post ever! By the end I actually had forgotten about the hutch. It looks great, but the everyday stuff was sweet- especially the tributes to your boys and in-laws. Thanks for sharing!

  13. says

    I can’t wait to see this space come together. That hutch is fantastic and I love that you painted the back a bolder color. Super pretty!

    I have to try that primer spray. I have a couple of pieces waiting for paint, that will totally make my life easier.

    That mirror is going to be such a show stopper. Seriously, I am so jealous.


  14. Maria says

    I love the new hutch and layout of the room, but I’m still wondering how you will work in the table and those chairs which both boast a medium color as opposed to the dark wood or white furnishings of the room. Great post and can’t wait to see the finished product of this room.


  15. says

    Without having read any of the comments above…

    I think the gold edged mirror, wicker on the chairs, dark wood, and potted plants makes the room look kind of “Imperial Britain in India” which I actually quite like! A little like this: http://www.slrobertson.com/galleries/canada/victoria/empress/fairmont-empress-high-tea-2.htm (High Tea at the Empress Hotel in Victoria, British Columbia) except your place has blue undertones instead of red.

    I like the gold mirror, very bold.

  16. kristen says

    why do people take things so seriously? so she made a jesus joke, and a mighty fine one at that. if jesus didn’t have a sense of humor, we all (read: I) would have been in real trouble years ago.

    romans 8:31, katie. all i have to say.

  17. says

    Love the way that turned out. I did that with a vintage find as well but painted it black years ago. now i am sick of black and inspired to paint everything WHITE.
    I think it would be so cute if you had one of those shiny bar trolly’s where the dresser is with liquor on it. Like this but not a kajillion dollars: http://bit.ly/yIyfZW

  18. says

    You did amaz-ing on the china hutch… oh man. I’m so jealous… I am in NEED of one, and have lovely dreams of refinishing one I find at goodwill (do you know how many i’ve passed by?)! Mainly because I’m not fast at finishing projects. But you did great – thanks so much for the inspiration! Cannot wait to see what you do next to this room!

  19. says

    i am ALL about the goodwill purchases, I can’t wait to do the same when I have more space — esp when you consider if you had bought a similar looking piece for new, you would have paid thousands !

  20. Cherica says

    I have a similar china cabinet that was given to me & like yours everything about it is great except the back. Thanks so much for the inspiration & the tip about the Goodwill senior discount. Gonna load Nana up & go shopping!

  21. morgan says

    The hutch turned out awe.some. I’m so impressed! And, I’m totally inspired to do something like that myself…if I wasn’t so chicken!

  22. Beth says

    “I think that our heavenly Father gave each of us a pretty awesome sense of humor…He invented it”

    God gave us feet too, but it doesn’t mean he wants us to kick people.

    • says

      Dear Beth,
      At first I was hurt because you are comparing my joke which was made with no ill intent to a malicious act. And then I thought…well, you are offended…obviously I didn’t mean to offend anyone. So I am sorry if my joke hurts you…
      I want you to know that we probably won’t agree on all things – scripture interpretation and theology related…and that’s okay…because to me that is a beauty of having our own personal relationships with Christ. If anything else appears on this blog that offends you, just know that it isn’t done with a mean spirit :)
      xo – kb

  23. Melanie says

    Thanks, Annie, Angie, and Beth for expressing my same thoughts. God does give us creativity and humor, but I think he also gives us wisdom for how to use those (i.e. not hurting other people, slander, etc.). I think that means being especially responsible and respectful when it comes to using God’s name.

    You have a great blog, Katie! Thanks for considering our thoughts.

  24. Steffanie says

    I think the hutch turned out great, but am I the only one who doesn’t like the bright-white hutch against all of the off-white trim in that room?

  25. says

    Oh the amazing that can come from a can of white spray paint. You defnitely taught me the art of looking at lines and not color. Love your idea for the funky colored mirror. Eager to see the results.

  26. Denise says

    The “crazy ornate mirror from his great aunt” is my favorite piece in the room. It complements the architectural style and the opulent scale of your home!

  27. says

    So what are the plans for all of that fabric? Our JoAnn store is moving (15 feet down the street!) but clearing out everything in the store before they move….I’m planning on stocking up for a few projects down the road and can’t wait to have my own pile soon!
    Your mega pile-o-fabric has me dreaming….but just wondering what your plans are for it all!

    • says

      haha..it’s not so mega :) Most of it is just a yard or less…but I have a plan for a boy apron for Will…and a few throw pilllows and to recover a bench seat and to make some art :)
      xo – kb

  28. says

    Looks great. My local ReStore has a bunch of these and included a picture of one redone in a light blue/tealy color and it turned out awesome.

    This was one of your projects where I had to scroll down to the botton first to see the pictures and THEN I was able to read all of the text. Sometimes I just get so excited that I need instant gratification!

  29. says

    I love this project. I’ve been stalking Craigs List for a decent hutch for what seems like EVER! Nothing promising has come my way yet, but I so love the white with the color on the inside. Yours looks grrrrrrrrreat as Tony the Tiger would say.

  30. says

    This looks so great! And you made it look doable. I bought a hutch four years ago that I’ve been meaning to paint white with an aqua beadboard back… and it just hasn’t happened yet. The (ugly) hutch is full of dishes and functional, but I need to prettify it! Pronto! How long did it take you start to finish to do this project?

    • says

      About two weeks…only because I was working on the big bathroom during that…it’s done now and I can’t wait to reveal it!
      xo – kb

  31. Jessica says

    Hi Katie – So this may be a dumb question…but how can you tell if the top portion of a hutch can be removed from the bottom portion? I have a pass-me-down dining room set that I would love to redo including getting rid of the top portion of the hutch. But when I look at the back of the piece I can’t tell if it’s meant to be separated or not. I’m scared that if I try and it’s not meant to come apart, I’ll ruin it. Any insight would be great. As always, thanks for your super helpful blog posts! :)

    • says

      Usually you can tell on the back – if the piece doesn’t come off easily being lifted straight up then sometimes there is a little metal bracket on the back that attaches both pieces. If there isnt anything visible on back that attaches it and it still doesn’t come off and you can’t find anything on the inside of the base or the inside of the top that directly screws the two together then it’s probably attached and I wouldn’t try to pry them apart.
      xo – kb

  32. Grechen says

    Hi Katie! I found your blog through Jen @ IheartOrganzing and I am so glad I did, you seem like an amazing person, who loves God and has a great sense of humor! I read a few of the comments some people had to say about that line you wrote and first I have to say I seriously laughed out loud (actually few times while reading some of your other posts) and I am a christian ( I didn’t get offended or find it crude) I think you responded very well and I’m glad you understand that some people just see things differently and well you can’t please everyone, be who you are and don’t change who you are to please others. On another note your projects are very inspirational, my husband and I are in the process of buying a house and if all goes well we are set to close in April, and I’m so excited to make the house our home and have it reflect our personalities. I must say I have NEVER done a DIY project NEVER EVER , so as excited as I am I scared to death that I just won’t be able to do it right.( I am a DIY virgin) lol, but seriously is there like a DIY 101 or DIY for dummies I could start at or do you have any tips or advice for when I do get started?! Thanks bunches, and again I love your blog!

  33. Jan says

    I absolutely love your blog and look forward to all your new projects.
    I am currently working on a project (small kitchen island) that seems to be a veneer surface like your hutch.

    I am currently sanding (yeah me!) and was telling my husband about your testimonial about the Zissner’s oil based primer. (Cause his dad told him to get Kilz and I said, KB uses Zissner’s and that’s what I’m going to use)

    QUESTION: Is it true that if I use oil based primer I HAVE to use oil based paint or deal with peeling paint later???

    Thanks in advance!

    • says

      haha…yes, I like both Zinnser and Kilz – but just found Zinnser is a smidge easier to use on furniture. If you use a water based primer then you must use a water based paint – but if you use a oil-based primer (oh and almost all spray paints are oil based just so you know) then you can use oil or water based paint. Most peeling comes from people not prepping their surface to give it a little grit (which makes the paint stick) or from the right primer.
      xo – kb

  34. Jamie says

    Not sure if you will even get this because the post is older, but I can’t find whether you spray painted this piece or painted it with a roller or by hand. I love it but have ruined furniture by those darned brush strokes and want to try again. Can you tell me what paint you used for the white including the brand? Thanks Katie!!

    • says

      I used spray primer and then brushed/mini roller it the rest :) And the paint I used was just Valspars bright white in semi gloss…nothing fancy. If you have trouble with brush strokes, you might wanna try a paint additive that will prevent the paint from drying too quickly…it keeps the dry time open for longer so the paint has the ability to level out :)
      xo – kb

  35. Julie says

    I just a house and my brother is dying to give me his table and hutch (grandma’ s old cherry pieces) because he isn’t really a fan of them and wants a high top anyway. I keep saying no because i think they are ugly and wouldn’t match my new paint colors… BUT with you blog I might take the hutch and refinish it similar to what you did. I LOVE IT! i know its an old post but i just stumbled across your page from Pinterest. Maybe even a distressed white would look great.. My gears are turning now!! Great job with your dining room!

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