Furniture Used For Vanities Great Ideas
30 Furniture-to-Vanity Conversions You’ve Got to See
Readers recently went gaga over a Houzz article showing13 unconventional vanities. In response, more than 150 users shared comments about their own forays into converting a piece of furniture into a unique bathroom vanity. Here we share 30 of them, many of which contain details about cost and other info that could inspire your next remodel project.
1. Marital Bliss
Barbara Binghamused an antique teak wedding table from India as her bathroom vanity. After buying the piece for about $650 plus shipping, she cleaned and sanded it, then added four coats ofpolyurethane to protect it from water, while trying to retain the character of the piece. “My husband had to drill through two layers of wood for the faucet and drain to be mounted,” she says. “He also bought two walnut boards from a vintage wood supplier and placed them at the bottom over the cross braces of the legs to make shelves for towels and baskets.”
All in, she guesses she spent about $1,000.
Faucets: Elite; vessel sinks: Kraus 2. Wild, Wild Chest
In search of a vanity for her small powder room, Jennifer Thomson stumbled upon this Pulaski three-drawer chest online for $390. She bought it, as well as a Carrara marble slab for $100. She paid a marble fabricator $200 to cut the piece to fit the top of the chest and cut a hole for the drain.
She then cut a square out of the back of the chest herself. Her son cut the center from the two top drawers for the drain. A plumber moved the faucet line to accommodate a wall-mount faucet, leaving more usable space under the sink. “Since the chest was shorter than expected, I chose a vessel sink that was somewhat thick,” Thomson says.
All in she says she spent about $1,055 for materials, labor and installation.
Vessel sink: Kraus; single-handle wall-mount faucet in champagne bronze, Trinsic 3. Midcentury Mini
Melinda Green guesses this was a 1950s or 1960s atomic-style cabinet; she bought it on Craigslist for $35. It had been bright purple and blue, so she stripped, sanded, primed and painted it, first using Kilz primer, then Benjamin Moore’s Advance waterborne interior alkyd satin finish paint, and finally coats of Silent Night on the cabinet and Sidewalk Gray on the doors, both by Benjamin Moore.
Her husband cut out the interior shelves to make room for plumbing lines but left 6 inches of shelf edges on each side for a little storage. Since this was part of new construction, the Greens had their plumber install the unit and add a sink on top. She estimates that she spent about $400 on the vanity, sink, faucet and paint, not including the labor, installation and plumbing fixtures.
The medicine cabinet is an old key cupboard that she found on the side of the road. “It had only numbered hooks inside,” Green says. “Now it has several shelves with the numbers behind them.”
White vessel sink: Decolav; Monterrey 8-inch widespread two-handle bathroom faucet in polished chrome with wrist blade handles: American Standard 4. Farm Charm
Beth Churchbought this drop-leaf farm table at a junk store 20 years ago for about $35. It has gone from being an entry table for family photos to a TV stand, to a collection table, and now has finally found its permanent home as a vanity for ahalf bath. “Having the drop leafs made it ideal to hide the plumbing on one side and easy to cut out for the plumbing fixture on the wall side,” she says.
She spent about $275 on the piece, including the sink and faucet.
Ceramic vessel sink with faucet in satin nickel: Kraus 5. Great Dane
Stephen Brookes’ house isfull of vintage Danish modern teak furniture, and he wanted to incorporate a vintage piece into the master bath when he did a total renovation earlier this year. He chose anold teak sideboard made by Poul Hundevad in the 1960s. “We weren’t using it, and while it was in beautiful shape, it wasn’t particularly rare or valuable — they run between $500 and $1,000 on eBay,” he says. “So we took a chance.”
The first step was to waterproof it while keeping the original teak oil patina. He sealed the whole thing with TotalBoat penetrating epoxy, then gave it two coats of Epifanes Rubbed Effect varnish. “It worked out well and looks very natural, without that plastic ‘poly’ look,” he says.
He then had a custom top and sink made by Porcelanosa, in the company’s Krion material in a matte snow-white finish with a molded single sink. “This worked out well — the sink is positioned exactly over the folding doors on the left side of the vanity, and the edges of the top extend a half inch over the cabinet on the front and sides,” he says.
Contractor Traylor Design and Construction cut a hole in the top of the sideboard for the sink and the faucet, sealed the top to the sideboard, removed the legs and mounted the piece to the wall at 32 inches high.
East linear single-hole lavatory faucet in matte black: Newport Brass
6. Dresser to Impress
Brittney Marcum bought this piece as a dresser from a local store for $350 and hired a local handyperson to help convert it into a vanity. During the full gut of the bathroom, she had wall-mount faucets installed to keep in line with the vintage farmhouse feel of the vanity. She says she spent around $2,200; about $1,500 of that went to the handyperson for the work on the dresser, the installation and the gutting, plumbing and Sheetrock work for the whole bathroom.
Vessel sinks: model KCV-120 in white, Kraus; wall-mount 2-handle bathroom faucet in oil-rubbed bronze: model 86H040RB, Kokols; pop-up drain in oil-rubbed bronze: model PU-10ORB, Kraus 7. Desk Job
Cameron Kirkpatrick turned a 1970s desk he picked up for $50 at a secondhand store into a vanity using nothing more than a little paint and a creative installation. “Luckily, I was able to find a piece that matched the dimensions of the vanity top perfectly, to the millimeter,” he says. “I ultimately decided to float the piece to achieve the ideal height, as the original legs were quite short, but the preexisting cutout underneath the desk made finishing the plumbing portion of the install a snap.”
The old top of the desk went on to become the tabletop for his garage workstation. Though he did most of the work himself, including priming, sealing and painting the desk, he hired a professional to help with relocating the plumbing and mounting and installing the unit.
He says he spent about $330 on the desk, top, sink, faucet, primer and paint.
Solid white cultured marble integral single-sink bathroom vanity top; primer and sealer: All-In-One, Behr; vanity paint: charcoal, Glidden; two-handle center-set faucet in brushed nickel 8. Old-World Wow
This homeowner converted a burl wood chest of drawers made in England in the 1880s into a vanity with the help of decorator Bonnie Cofield, Loay Ali of The European Kitchen andcabinetmaker Tim Maddox. The total cost was around $1,000. 9. Vintage Value
Dan and Lei Patrick converted a midcentury dresser they picked up at an antiques store for $300 into their master bath vanity.
Lei cleaned the entire dresser with a very mild solution of soap and water, then deep-cleaned it with orange oil, which “really brought out the wood grain and color,” she says. She then touched up nicks and scratches and used Waterlox Original sealer to seal the tops, sides and drawers. “Sealing it took about a week because you have to wait 24 hours between coats, but it was so worth it,” she says.
Dan then used patterns that came with the sinks to cut holes in the top of the dresser. He also modified the drawers on either side to make room for plumbing and turned the top drawers into tilt-outs. “Perfect for storing toothpaste and floss,” Lei says. The middle drawers below the sinks were shortened by about half but still have room for curling irons and hair brushes, while the bottom drawers lost only a couple of inches. The center row of drawers wasn’t modified at all.
The Patricks’ contractor, Duane from Dewco Construction, who did the framing on their addition and remodel, built a pedestal to place the dresser on to raise it to a tall countertop height. Bel Shower Door in Denver used the sink patterns and specs to cut the custom glass countertop. “We used clear glass so the beautiful wood grain would still be visible,” Lei says. The hardware is original.
In addition to the $300 dresser, Lei says they spent $305 on the glass countertop, $156 on each sink and about $300 on each faucet.
Sinks: Kohler; faucets: Delta 10. Feel the Music
Emily Brown Ehouiz found this antique sheet music cabinet for $80 in a local salvage shop, and it was just the right size to fit on the new wall she had built for a walk-in shower.
She removed the inside shelving to accommodate plumbing, drilled holes for the drain and faucet, and covered the piece in a mixture of thinset and interior flat Lotus Leaf paint by Behr.
Her neighbor built the flat-bottomed wooden bowl from a piling from the Baltimore Harbor. “My thinking was that since this wood was underwater for years, that it wouldn’t need waterproofing as a sink,” Ehouiz says. “After my first installation, though, the bowl had cracks and the counter underneath was constantly wet. I removed the sink bowl and after letting it dry for a month, I filled the cracks with Gorilla Glue and sawdust, sanded it smooth and coated it with a layer of Waterlox. It now holds water and is resistant to toothpaste and kid muck.”
In addition to the cabinet, she spent $53 on the faucet and drain. 11. Far-Out Far East
Sue Farrant fancies herself a keen amateur decorator, and has built, decorated and renovated a number of homes over the years. This vanity was originally a Chinese side cupboard with two doors and two drawers that Farrant bought for about $180. The patterned bowl she picked up for $37.
A carpenter friend cut down the drawers of the vanity to fit the plumbing and drilled pipe holes in the shelf and base of the cabinet. Fortunately, the vanity bowl hole was the correct size for standard waste fittings, she says. Her son painted several coats of clear lacquer on the top of the cabinet to protect it from moisture. 12. Vive la France
Jan Moody bought this French washstand at the famous Round Top Antiques Festival outside of Austin, Texas. “I knew I wanted an antique piece, so I went with measurements in hand,” she says. “Just to be sure about the scale, I called my designer, Marilyn Roberts of The Etagere in Austin, and she thought it would be perfect, even though she had had in mind one with doors to save a lot of cutting.”
Moody’s contractor had the marble cut for the basin on-site.
Sink, faucet and handles: Ferguson’s 13. Backcountry Beauty
Samantha Greenfield picked up this piece at a backcountry-road yard sale for $5 and used it as her TV stand for 11 years. A year ago she bought a farmhouse and began a major renovation. She wanted to find a special place for this piece, and it occurred to her that she could use it in her master bathroom to cut down on remodeling expenses. Her fiancé converted it into a vanity by cutting a hole in the top to fit the $10 sink and $30 faucet Greenfield found at ReStore, and retrofitting the drawers to make room for plumbing. Their plumber finished the installation for about $150. 14. Table It
Kimberly Cohn saw a similar idea for her antique kitchen table vanity on Houzz when she was doing her bathroom. “It was a little hard to cut into a piece of 100-year-old furniture, but ultimately it feels like it added to the piece,” she says. “Even if it was taken out, it could be used in a multitude of ways. I saved the back legs and used them for a different project. I love the country feel, and it is the most complimented feature in our house. I would never buy a standard vanity again.” Carolyn Albert-Kincl, ASID15. Bold and Beautiful
DesignerCarolyn Albert-Kincl updated her client’s mahogany chest by having it painted at an auto-body shop then turned into a vanity. Lazzell Design Works16. Sideboard Surprise
John Uttenreither shortened the legs on this antique sideboard that he bought for $75.
17. Sew Cool
Lynette Swanberg converted asewing machine cabinet that she found at the Salvation Army for $10, to replace a pink Formica counter and dark brown wood vanity in her 1940s home.
First she removed the sewing machine and the hinged covers, then cut a larger hole to fit the sink. She painted the cabinet in three coats of a satin finish custom-mix paint. The cabinet, sink, faucet, paint and plumbing fixtures cost her about $300.
Sink: Kohler; faucet: Pfister SOCO Builders18. Treasure Trove
When a client’s treasured piece of furniture didn’t fit in a newly remodeled home, Soco Builders transformed it into a lovely vanity for the remodeled bathroom.
Juboka Ltd19. Too Medit to Quit
Here, a hand-stained carved credenza received a narrow rectangular sink for a Mediterranean-style bathroom. 20. Seeing Double
DesignerAngela Francisused this antique sideboard for a double vanity in a client’s master bathroom. 21. Grand Stand
Belinda Barclay repurposed an old washstand and marble top for her vanity. 22. Curves Ahead
Julie Boettcher ofEnVision Interiorsconverted a vintage dresser into a double-sink vanity to add “contrast, texture, warmth and curves to my farmhouse renovation,” she says. 23. Teak and Chic
A homeowner turned this old teak cabinet and mirror frame brought back from Indonesia into a vanity, and even painted the carved doors for a little color. 24. Drawer Amor
The homeowner found this chest of drawers left in his house by a previous owner, so he pulled out a Mexican-style ceramic sink that had been gathering dust in a crawl space for years and created a new powder room vanity. 25. Retro Done Right
This homeowner turned a 1970s end table into a vanity, cutting down balustrades to create feet and using a piece from an old iron stove for the back border. The sink is offset to allow space below to store hairdryers and other things. 26. Taken for Granite
A vintage sideboard finally found a purpose in this home, thanks to an upgrade with leftover granite from the kitchen and a top-mount sink that saves room for storage below. 27. Haute Hotel Style
Ed Miller converted this hotel dresser and mirror he bought from an antiques store for $350.
He wasn’t in any hurry, either. He worked only an hour or two every now and then over the course of a year, putting in a total of about 40 hours to complete the piece. It includes a simple round sink intended to look like an old washbowl.
With the dresser included, Miller says he spent a total of $680.
Faucet: Victorian, Delta 28. Kitchen Kitsch
Ed Miller also converted an old kitchen worktable with a porcelain top into a vanity. The piece had belonged to his in-laws.
Miller began by cutting a hole for the sink in the porcelain top with an electric grinder and a 4-inch metal cutting disk. “I held my breath when I started cutting and thought, ‘Well, the sink has a wide lip. If the porcelain chips badly, it will cover it,’” he says. “The disk cut through the top like a hot knife through butter with no chipping at all.”
He removed a former bread drawer in the center and attached the drawer front to the cabinet.The hinges and the Bakelite handles are original.
He purchased the sink, faucet, storage baskets and white paint at Home Depot for about $225 and spent two weekends converting the piece and installing it.
Sink: Memoirs, Kohler; faucet: Glacier Bay
29. Splendid Credenza
Kristi Marineau converted a midcentury Brohill credenza into a vanity in one of her bathrooms … 30. Dapper Desk
… and a midcentury desk into a vanity in another.