Before and After – Dining Hutch & Desk

I was doing some housecleaning on the blog recently and found some ‘treasures’ that I thought could be brought out of the archives and back into the spotlight.

Granted, the photo quality and editing are still reflective of my early days as a blogger, but the content is good – so I hope you’ll join me for “Flashback Week”!

Someone (who was studying neurology at the time) once told me that there are two kinds of brains;  

  • an “immature brain” that likes immediate gratification eg. mowing the lawn, painting a room, making a craft.
  • and a “mature brain” that can hold off on the gratification for a larger end goal eg. studying years to become a physician, writing a novel, tending a garden.

I fully admit that I have an “immature brain”.  I love before and afters and live for instant gratitude.
I like mowing the lawn and seeing the perfect stripes.  I don’t think there is a room in the house that hasn’t been repainted at least once since we moved in, and I like to refinish furniture.

I thought I could make a go of it as a business and so started accumulating bits and pieces at garage sales, stripped them down and re-did them like new…. but after taking into account all the hours I put in – I’m definitely in the hole.

On the upside, I do have these beautiful before and afters to share;

This is a dining room hutch that I found through Kijiji.  I bought it for $125 planning to dismantle it…

What I wanted was a free-standing bookcase for my bedroom…
and a bar with a faux-granite top for entertaining. 

This desk was also a Kijiji steal at $25
And look at this beauty now! Perfect for a small bedroom or to use as a make-up vanity!
More to come…


  1. Youjin Lee June 20, 2013 at 2:55 pm - Reply

    Shelly! I love your creations. You are very talented!

  2. Anonymous June 20, 2013 at 8:18 pm - Reply

    Wow. They all look fabulous. You have a great talent for seeing potential. I love it!!! Gillian from Facebook.

  3. BreAnna Beaman March 19, 2014 at 6:34 pm - Reply

    Really like the faux granite top! What material and manufacturer/design is it?

  4. city planters April 30, 2015 at 8:29 am - Reply

    I like what you guys are usually up too. Such clever
    work and coverage! Keep up the great works guys I’ve incorporated you guys to
    my blogroll.

  5. Trish July 29, 2015 at 8:02 am - Reply

    Shelly, you are amazing! I am blown away by all of the before and afters! Keep up the great work. Enjoy the summer of garage sale treasures and nice weather to create magic with them.

  6. Bethany April 7, 2018 at 8:13 am - Reply

    I have the exact same hutch! How did you separate the top and bottom parts of the hutch? I am wanting to do a similar thing to mine. The bar looks great!!!!

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