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Nightstand Makeover: Rose & Rosa > Harper & Avery


If you've read my other furniture makeover posts, then you can just skip the next paragraph. :) If not, read on for a little background!

I'm project-oriented, hands-on, would rather go to the dentist than read instructions, I love a good deal, and love a good furniture makeover even better. I'm not afraid to get my hands dirty and with that said, am not afraid to go to the store mid-project, partially covered in paint. Usually it's the craft or hardware store at this point, so I figure they have to see more than just me decorated in paint and in my finest painting clothes. One of my many hobbies is to repurpose and update furniture pieces. Below you'll find step-by step instructions on how to give furniture a makover, peppered with the occasional behind-the-scenes comic relief.


Getting married later in life has many perks but also presents a few unprecedented "fun" challenges that one may overlook in the "happily engaged" stage of life... an example being that each of us had been living on our own for quite some time (translation: we each had accumulated our own growing and overflowing collection of stuff from the past 30 years...). No better time than the present for a little spring (or anytime of year) cleaning! After sorting through the small stuff, it was time to make some bigger decisions in terms of furniture...

I digress. Before marriage, I would consider hubs decor style to be rather basic and characteristic of the typical bachelor pad design (this decoded means, black on black, on top of black, on top of MORE black, scattered with a few wooden elements here and there). To paint a picture... here is hubby's prized possession sofa set that he just can't let go of... After much thoughtful discussion, hubs finally agreed to sell it...for the right price....which really means unless someone wants to pay MORE than hubs originally paid for it (clearly not happening), then hubs gets to keep it until that special buyer comes along... (translation: I am no longer cautiously optimistic that the right person will ever come into existence, hence I feel rather confident that this piece will end up being a staple in his future man cave... #compromise

{Update... In case you were waiting on the edge of your seat, we are STILL waiting for that interested if you, or anyone you know, might be interested in this lovely man cave sofa set...please message me asap!} ;)

Now that the point is illustrated, it's time to move on to the nightstands... Well almost... quick detour on the bedroom set. Since I gave into the far-fetched compromise on the sofa set, hubs generously budged a little on the guest bedroom set. At the time, his original bedroom set (complete with black lamps, black suffocating comforter, and black manly decor) was currently occupying the guest bedroom. After some debate, we decided it was time to update the guest bedroom.

Being newly married, our updates also needed to be budget-friendly. My original plan was to repaint/stain his existing set. After much discussion, we decided to take a new direction and attempt to sell the current set, then use the money towards the guest bedroom makeover. We embarked on a quick 30-minute home improvement project by touching up some of the scratches, polishing the wood, dressing it up with a few personal touches (aka changing up the dire comforter and lamp situation into something more uplifting), making do with what we could find around the house.

After the quick makeover, I posted the set on Facebook Marketplace, which immediately garnered quite a bit of interest. Much to our surprise, we actually were able to sell the bedroom set for $750 and even made a $200 profit (hubs originally paid $550). FYI: If you're looking to declutter or redecorate while making a little moolah, I'll be posting some tips and tricks for selling items to maximize profits in another post, so stay tuned!

Now that we had $750 to play with, we started the search for a new set. We shopped around a little until we found quite the little gem from a designer showcase room warehouse... a headboard complete with sideboards and two-drawer footboard, let's make a deal!

GIF compliments of

After a little negotiating, we sealed the deal for our newfound treasure, all for the price of $220. We were thrilled.

Even though we would have loved to find matching nightstands to simplify the process, this was out of the question. So our next challenge was finding coordinating nightstands. My first plan of attack was to do what any savvy shopper would do, naturally consult the local Facebook Marketplace and see what the local offerings entailed. I anticipated my treasure hunt would be much easier and quicker than actually was the case though. Turns out, most nightstands (that people were reselling) were too short to match our taller setup with the new bed. I remained positive and narrowed my search for nightstands that were at least 29".


One of the many virtues and lessons in life is honing the skill of patience. My husband has this virtue mastered. I, on the other hand, am still a work in progress. Case in point... I may have jumped the gun a tad early once I finally found nightstands that were 30" tall. After we picked them up (and hubs carried them down some crazy steep stairs...), we realized they really didn't match our overall decor theme.

Luckily enough, God had some grace and we were able to even make a $75 profit from them by reselling them. We added that to our pot and now had $825 to work with! The fun continues...

Deciding to be patient this time, I scoured through the many ads for a couple weeks until I finally landed on these two beauties. Not only were they tall enough, but they were in a great shape, and made by one of my favorite decor inspiration stores, Pottery Barn, complete with the retail sticker on the back so I know I wasn't scammed. And...they were a steal! $55/nightstand! Originally retailing around $500/nightstand, I'll take the $55 deal any day! Of course they were the wrong color, but that was a relatively easy fix for me. From this point on, we'll call them Rose and Rosa, to reflect their original rosy red finish and outlook on life.

I'd like to introduce you to Rose and Rosa...

FINALLY onto what you all have been waiting for... the tutorial!


Safety and smarts first... Before I started the project, I made sure to cover the area well with a huge drape to avoid the inventible painting mishaps. I also decked myself out in my best painting garb, glasses, gloves, and mask to avoid breathing in any sand or paint fumes. Just call me Safety Sam! Ideally I would have done this project in the garage, but I'm pretty sure I started this project at 11PM, so it was dark and cold at this point... leaving me no choice but to drape and drape well...


I began Rose and Rosa's makeover by first removing their accessories (aka the knobs). I tried to originally sand them by hand, but the current finish was keeping me from making much progress (see below), so I had to step up my game and bring out the big guns...aka the power sander.

I then used my small hand-held power sander and gave them a thorough sanding. I started with coarse sand paper (around 60 grit), then moved to finer grit paper (120-180). FYI: The higher the number, the finer the sandpaper. I inspected the pieces and noticed just a few small imperfections which I proceeded to fill in with wood filler, and then I sanded them once more for good measure.


Since these nightstands were relatively smooth, and our headboard was quite textured, I decided to get creative and add a little texture of our own. My product of choice was Wood Icing, purchased at a local decor and craft shop. To be fair, I thought of this after my first coat of stain, so that explains the darker color of the nightstand in the below pictures.

First, I smoothed the icing on with a plastic spatula to emulate wood grains.

I then used a plastic fork and sand paper to create some texture by lightly combing the icing while it was still wet with smooth movements to replicate the textured wood-like surface to match the headboard.

After the product dried, I then lightly sanded the nightstands one more time by hand, being careful not to remove too much of the texture I just created.

Since only the nightstand tops and drawer fronts would be in view, I opted to save time by only texturizing the tops and the drawer instead of continuing the icing step for the entire piece. Had my patience skill set reached a new unheard of level, I might have continued texturizing the sides, but for now this would do.


To achieve a similar look and feel as the headboard, I opted to try out a variety of stains until I was satisfied with the finished look. Normally you would only need one stain (or two stains if you wanted to blend different colors), but since I was trying to match a specific look, I went for the variety pack. :)

I used the following stains, which are all shown in the picture: Varathane Wood Stain in Carbon Gray, Varathane Wood Stain in Briarsmoke, General Finishes Glaze Effects in Burnt Umber, and Rustoleum Wood Stain in Dark Walnut. (Apologies for the messy cans, I never remember to take pictures of my painting supplies until after I start painting.) These are some of my favorite stains that I've tried so far.

To explain the staining process...or the staining chaos is more like it... I basically plopped on the different stains in catawampus lines. I then used my favorite stain sponge and just lightly blended the colors to make a faux appearance of wood grain.​​

Heads up, the stains get on EVERYTHING, and they are very hard to remove, if not impossible from some surfaces, so be careful when applying the stains. Make sure to wear gloves and old clothes whenever staining. I wouldn't necessarily recommend staining furniture inside the house like I did, but I like to live dangerously... ;)

Here is a Before and After with our 1st stain attempt:

Even though I was a big fan of the overall color from the first stain attempt, after hubs carried up the nightstand into our guest bedroom to compare it with the headboard, I realized the colors were quite a bit off... The moral of the story is... memory and color matching can only go so far... So when trying to paint/stain furniture to match another piece, take out a drawer from the piece to use as an example and keep it nearby for easy reference as you paint/stain... This brilliant idea came to me the 2nd time around...

Clearly the nightstand was now too gray for the headboard. Back to the drawing board.

Moving on to attempt #2 meant re-sanding, re-texturizing, and re-staining... this time with less Carbon Gray and more Briarsmoke and Burnt Umber. This one-night project turned into a two-day project, but with a little patience and perseverance, it all started to come together again. It wasn't perfect, but it was close enough for me!

You can see the different streaks of stain colors to mimic the appearance of wood grains in the below pic.


I usually like to distress pieces, but I opted to keep this piece un-distressed to keep with the current decor of the room.

I finished the piece by liberally applying General Finishes Gel Topcoat in Satin using a sponge brush. You can also use a polyurethane coating such as Minwax Polyurethane in Clear Satin or a wax finish. I painted on two coats to make sure the finish was good and strong and could withstand a few moves.


The final product turned out better than I was hoping. After all is said and done, I think they are ready for new names, as Rose and Rosa just don't cut the mustard anymore. New updates = new names, so Harper and Avery it is! They have now found a loving home in our guest bedroom and welcome all who visit!


By adding a few finishing touches, we brought Harper and Avery to life as well as tied in the room decor and color scheme. With my creative juices in full force, I also discovered one of hub's black (shocking) shelves in the discard/donate pile, which I snatched back, repurposed and stained to match the nightstands for one last finishing touch.

For more Guest Bedroom Decor and Inspiration, check out our Newlywed Home Tour > Guest Bedroom post on our Home Makeovers page!

Thanks for reading and hope you found something helpful, funny, or inspiring! Feel free to leave comments or questions below! Check out more How To's and Before & After's on my HOME MAKEOVERS page!


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This lifestyle blog is a sampling of my many passions and interests that are a reflection of my soul essence.
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