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Making Our 100-Year-Old Cabinet Into the Perfect Bedroom Built-in

Have you ever found a vintage or antique piece of furniture that just speaks to you? That’s exactly what this 100-year-old cabinet did to me, and the best part was that it was already waiting for me the day we moved in. See how we made it into the perfect built-in.

100-year-old cabinet built-in

Our 100-Year-Old Cabinet

Sometimes it’s just LOVE AT FIRST SIGHT. That’s how it was for me when I first laid eyes on this beautiful antique cabinet.

Each month I join a group of amazing bloggers for a monthly DIY challenge. April’s challenge was a furniture DIY project. I’m sharing how we turned an antique cabinet into a bedroom built-in and the sentiment behind it.

**You can see all the other inspiring DIY projects at the end of this post. 

100-year-old cabinet

Here’s the 1920 cabinet waiting for us on the day we moved in. We were told that she was built in 1920, during the construction of our house. The best part was that each of the previous owners left her with the house when they moved out.

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100-year-old cabinet DIY

Creating a Space in Our Home

These “before” pictures were taken before I even knew about needing good pictures on the blog and other social media, so I apologize.

This piece was SO BIG, and our house is only 1600 square feet with very little wall space. The bathroom was the only spot we could think to put this 100-year-old cabinet but there was a small problem. It blocked the door next to it.

We needed to cut about 12 inches off the back of the piece. This was painful, to say the least, but we wouldn’t have had the room for it otherwise and didn’t want to lose this piece of history by giving it up.

100-year-old cabinet DIY

It would now fit in the bathroom. All we had lost was some shelf depth and drawer space. Next, we added a beadboard backing to close up the back of the cabinet.

before picture of our 1920 bedroom

Upcycling our Cabinet by Creating a Bedroom Built-in

This was originally how our bedroom looked when we moved in. There was a walk-in closet where the cabinet is now. During the first phase of renovations, the closet entry was relocated when creating a hall to the bathroom. So at that time, there still was no option to add a built-in to this space yet.

bathroom and bedroom renovations

Several years later we decided to put in a bathtub on the other side of the bedroom wall where the walk-in closet was. This is the view from the bathroom side. We created the built-in by moving the wall further into the bathroom.

100-year-old cabinet built-in being put in

And there was her new home.

The cabinet was set in place and secured to the wall studs, and the gap between the frame opening was covered with 1’x 4′ pine board trim. We added glass doors and painted the piece white, roughing up the surface a bit.

100-year-old cabinet built-in

Her New Home

As you can see, we have a very small bedroom with tight spaces, which is why this built-in was so important for us. A king-sized bed and a nightstand were practically all we could fit in the bedroom, so this antique cabinet acted as a dresser and additional space to display seasonal home décor and pictures.

100-year-old cabinet built-in

I hope you enjoyed the story of how we made our 100-year-old cabinet into the perfect bedroom built-in. It’s always so fun to have a piece of history like this that will always remain with the home. We are so happy with how it turned out.

More DIY Furniture Inspiration

Are you ready to see be inspired by my friend’s DIY furniture projects?

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Chas’ Crazy Creations | Reclaimed Wood Dining Table and Chairs DIY

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Design Morsels | Update Furniture Without Paint


Life at Bella Terra | Using Slipcovers

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The House on Silverado | Kitchen Barstools Easy Makeover with Paint

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Kippi At Home | DIY Chair Upholstery


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  1. Love that you put this in your bedroom, Kim! It looks awesome! And I loved the original green checkerboard floor; did you keep that? So nice to have a built-in where you can enjoy decorating, yet not be too cluttered in a small space. Your room is so cozy:)

  2. Such a great piece, Kim! I’m so glad you were able to save it and give it fresh life. It’s beautiful and I love the way you styled it too. Love your home so much lady! Hugs, CoCo

  3. Kim, I love how you kept this cabinet in your home but re-purposed it for your own use. The fact that it is embedded in the wall and not taking up precious floor space in your bedroom is brilliant! And the paint job is perfect for your decor. Really a fun post to read as I LOVE before and after shots. Hard to believe your cottage hasn’t always been just perfect. Thanks for sharing the history and renovation.

  4. I love that you were able to save this old piece of history from your home and turn it into something beautiful and useful again. Your home is so lovely and I always enjoy seeing your latest project! Pinned!

    Happy Easter, Kim!
    Niky @ The House on Silverado
    PS. I would LOVE it if you’d share this at my Sundays on Silverado link party, too!

  5. That piece MAKES your bedroom. It’s gorgeous. Fun to hear how everyone had left it behind, but you realized the potential. Your bedroom looks right out of a Cottage magazine (which maybe it is). It’s fun seeing how you changed it and made it fit in. You just don’t see that often enough. We throw too much away because we can’t see what it could be. You sure did. Happy Easter.

    1. Thank you, Andrea! Part of me looks back and wishes I would not have painted it and put it in another room, but space is so scarce around here. Wishing you a wonderful Easter my friend.

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