How to distress laminate furniture

How to distress laminate furniture

I picked up this old TV stand at the local Goodwill store for about $20.  I wasn’t sure where I was going to use it but I immediately regretted buying it when I brought it home.  What am I going to do with an UGLY forest green laminate TV stand.  WHAT was I thinking???  So it sat in my side hallway for a couple of months until I figured out what I was going to do with it.  I got a brain wave and decided to use it for one of our rental cottages and replace an antique cabinet that the TV previously sat upon.

Here’s the before in ALL it’s uglyness.

TV stand, before










I initially painted it brown because I was going to distress it by sanding the edges and showing the brown through the paint.  This technique works when its wood furniture – not so much when it’s laminate.  I’m not sure why I painted the inside of the DVD cabinet was this shade of blue.  I think I was still trying to figure out what the heck I was going to do.











Then inspiration must have hit me.  I painted it an aqua blue to match the aqua in the curtains of the cottage.  I used my own recipe of chalk paint and interior latex aqua paint.  I applied two coats using a foam brush.


tv stand, close up, after with logo










To create the “distress” look, I wrapped a clean lint-free cloth around my finger and carefully distress the areas where I wanted to stand out.  I used my favorite finishes, Miniwax Wood Finish in Jacobean stain.


TV stand, close up of distress look, logo









One of my favorite finishes for wood (or laminate) furniture.  Miniwas Wood Finish in Jacobean stain.










Since the TV stand is in a beach cottage, of course the knobs needed to be “beachy” too.  I splurged and paid $5 per knob – a special order through Lowe’s.  I love how it looks.


TV stand, fish knob, with logo








Here’s how the space looked when we first bought the cottages.  You would wonder why we bought them.

sunset paradise, living room with logo










Here’s our first makeover of the space.  A fast and low budget makeover to get it ready for the rental season.

Sunset Paradise, living room, with white walls, logo









And here’s how the TV stand looks now with a new look this season.  The picture was taken pre-fish-knobs. I was waiting for the order to come in.

Check out my post How To Update Wood Paneling to see how we transformed the walls.

sunset paradise, living room, after with tv stand, logo









Are you ready to tackle a piece of laminate furniture now and give it a distressed look?


Debi Collinson is a Designer.  She renovates “fixer uppers” to flip or to rent.  She staged houses for 10 years. She has seen houses at their best and their worst. Debi passes on her knowledge to help people Add Value to their Home while making their home a stunning retreat at the same time.

Linking to:

Thirty Eight Street

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