Small Desk Cabinets | Finished!

Today, I am sharing the completed pair of desk cabinets that we saw in my last post! Come on, let’s take a look at the final steps!

where we left off

Do you remember where we left off in the last post showing this pair of small desk cabinets? Let me remind you….

using flat edge knife to distress painted furniture

Do you remember now??? Yep, I was taking a knife to these adorable three-drawer cabinets that we had removed from a vintage desk!

Anyway, thanks for sticking with this craziness!

let’s talk tops

Let’s talk about the tops of this pair of desk cabinets. Since it was a desk with two side cabinets and one single top before we took it apart, we had to come up with another solution. It is a solution we have used time and again on various projects including disassembled desks and even on washstands with missing or broken marble tops

industrial pallet wood

Reclaimed lumber! Aren’t we all loving the reclaimed lumber projects and furniture that we see these days?? With the environmental concerns that many of us have, any way that we can save space in a landfill is worth it!

That includes industrial style pallets that are used to transport large and heavy items. They would have been thrown in the trash heap!

The pallets are not what you are probably accustomed to. They are pallets made from hardwood like oak and birch wood. Hubby dismantles, removes the nails, planes, and sands each board before they can be used. It is alot of work and so worth it!

finishing the tops

The next step after building the new desk cabinet tops is the finishing. Watch this video to see how I create this gorgeous finish on the reclaimed oak wood tops!

Wasn’t that easy?? And with amazing results!

The final step for the tops was to seal them. I used three coats of General Finishes High Performance in Flat to seal and protect the finish. I love this product so much! It provides the protection of polyurethane but looks like a hand-rubbed or waxed finish.

Just look how General Finishes Van Dyke Glaze brought out the grain in the oak wood!

The wood was so gorgeous I couldn’t stop snapping photos!

Ok, just one more 😉

subtle solutions

On to the rest of the desk cabinets!

Remember that I said the fronts of the cabinets were flat and kinda plain? Well, we fixed that problem with two solutions!

Painting this simple leafy vine design was fun and super easy! I have a tutorial coming soon on another piece I recently painted with this vine.

I used a custom mix of leftover Miss Mustard Seed Milk Paint that I had stashed in the fridge. Yes, leftover milk paint can be stored in the fridge for a future project! Don’t use it in your cereal or coffee!!

I used a bit of Mustard Seed Yellow, Typewriter and Grain Sack to get the color you see here.

It is soft and gentle and doesn’t scream loudly! Isn’t this the perfect subtle touch for these cabinets??

The second solution to the flat and plain fronts was to add vintage style glass knobs. My social media followers voted for these knobs and I couldn’t have been happier that they chose just what I would have chosen!

The vintage glass knobs are in harmony with the perfect chippiness of these desk cabinets, don’t ya’ think?

desk cabinets need a home

We already have a couple of people interested in these desk cabinets so don’t wait too long if you want to have them for your home! You can contact me over on Instagram if you are interested in this pair of adorable cabinets!

follow along!

I’m so glad you popped in for the tutorial! If you have any questions, please feel free to ask! I would love to share what I know about furniture and home decor makeovers with you!

Feel free to pin this image (or any other image for that matter!). Follow our Pinterest page while you are there!

Follow along our reinventing journey by signing up for blog post updates via email. You can also follow along on the socials! Instagram is my fave and you kind find me on Facebook too!

never miss a post!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


  1. Just gorgeous! Everything about them is perfect! What a fantastic job you’ve done!

    1. Cynthia Gayle says:

      Thanks for popping in Karen!!

  2. Cheryl Atkinson says:

    Hi there! I love these sweet little tables. Thank you for sharing!

    1. Cynthia Gayle says:

      Thanks so much!! I really appreciate you stopping by to see them!?

    1. Cynthia Gayle says:

      Thanks Linda! The wood tops and painted bases are one of my favorite ways to refinish furniture! Thank you for stopping by😊

  3. These turned out so cute! Great job! I could see them used as nightstands for a small room.

    1. Our customer was thinking the same thing! She is using this lovely pair in her guest bedroom! Thanks for stopping by Marie! 🥰

  4. These came out so great, Cynthia! I love the finish of the tops and 3 coats of anything sounds like way less work than a hand rubbed wax finish LOL! And that subtle painted design on the fronts? That is the PERFECT finish for these beauties! Kudos on a fantastic project!

    1. Thank you, Janet! I’m loving the subtle look the leaves give to this set of cabinets. Thanks for stopping by!