Giving Some Old Furniture A Makeover

I cannot BELIEVE how much we knocked out yesterday on the moving front!  The kids and I packed up the whole classroom/dining room and one of their bedrooms and hauled it over to the new house.  We tackled a good chunk of the storage unit, too.  Then, Mark and my older 2 boys, with the help of one of our friends at church + his 2 boys, went in and wiped out the entire storage unit in just over an HOUR!!  (Except for the piano because another friend has a special dolley thing that will make that mammoth easier to move). 

That’s a full ton of progress, so today, we are going to go at a little slower pace.  My kids worked their heiny’s off and I am ver proud of them.  I am letting them sleep in today because of all of their hard work, so I am going to sit here and enjoy my coffee and put up a quick post.

I am really planning to give my living room area a much-needed  makeover once we are moved.  However, I’m also trying to be a good steward of our money, so I’m not going to run out and buy all new stuff.  I’m actually looking forward to working with what I already have because it is in decent shape, it just needs a little “boost” to the new millenium.   ;)  

Our first order of business is the sofa and loveseat.

These have been through so much, bless their hardy hearts!!  4 kids, countless animals, spill, stains, sickness, several moves and all the while being OFF WHITE.  Are you kidding me?!  Hahaa!  What in the free world was I thinking when I purchased them?  Nevertheless, they’ve stood up under some serious trial.  But now, it’s time for some slipcovers for the old girls.  Parts of the cushions have become the tiniest bit threadbare and I can no longer get the arms any kind of clean looking despite my best efforts.  I have high hopes for their new duds, so we shall see!  I’m hoping they will be in by the end of next week.

Next up are the 40 year old endtables.  Yep.. FORTY. 

My parents bought these when they were first married so I’ve had them around my whole life.  And if you think my couches have been through it, just talk to these ladies!   I’m also going to attempt to overhaul the old lamps, too, but I’ll talk about that in a minute.

For the tables, I plan to sand them down and paint them a dark, dark chocolate color, which will almost appear black.  I’m also going to get some new handles; probably in a muted silver.  I have such high hopes for these girls, too! 

As for those lamps, I *was* going to toss them and start over, but I’m really thinking I may, just for kicks, see if I can paint those to be more modern.  The etchings really are beautiful in them, so a nice new color would probably bring those out well.  Of course, I’ll replace those horrific shades to something more kicky, but I’ll do that after I get the rest all figured out.  The great thing is, if the whole lamp thing bombs, they are easily replaceable.

So, here’s where you come in.  How would you make over these lamps?  I’m really at a loss for color, except I know that black is out because it will be too much with the color of the endtable.  Actually I’m not even sure I’ll keep them on the endtables, but still, black might be overkill.  Any ideas?

****Edited to add:  I realize that suggestion are going to be tough when I haven’t given you a thing to go on!  Here is the link to the slipcover color:

And my friend, Laura, suggested these pillows on the FB page:  I LOVE them!!

I’m probably going to get a new rug for in there, too.  So, pretty much, my color scheme is up in the air.


  1. Jennifer Guermonprez says:

    What color are the slip covers? That will greatly influence what colors are actual options for your lamps. Also, what color are the walls in the living room at the new house (or what will they be if you are painting). If the slip covers are multi-colored I suggest pulling a color out of them for the lamps and possibly for the walls, ceiling and curtains if those are not already set.

    • trainingolives says:

      I just edited my post with that info, Jen! The walls are just regular old beige, and we probably won’t change it. I’m up for any, any, any, suggestions on rugs and accessories, too. It’s ALL in need of updating. :)

  2. Whatever bold accent color you choose…bring that in with the lamps. A bright red? Turquoise? Canary yellow? You could then top with a neutral shade…the lighter beige or even a darker chocolate, closer to what you have planned for the tables.

    I’m no decorator though, take my thoughts for what they’re worth. hehe


  3. Jennifer Guermonprez says:

    Beige walls? how BORING is that! After 14 years of dorms and then apartments I just can’t leave the walls so pale and blah. (but then that’s my issue not yours)

    I suggest deciding on your pillows and then pulling colors from them. OR, start with a rug that you fall in love with and then pull from that. Really you can pull out a different color for anything. I would also hold off on painting the tables until you find your color scheme as you may find something else matches better. Unless of course, you want to go with various shades of brown. There are some neat rugs out there for just such a thing. Also, for your pillows check out the upholstery fabric at your neighborhood fabric store. Pillows are about the easiest thing to sew and hey, then it’s school work. I believe 4 pillows would be the perfect number of pillows and I seem to recall that you have that many students ;)

    Also, if you look in the paint department (in person or online) at Home Depot or Lowe’s they have ideas there that could jump start you. That’s what happened for us with Jadon’s room. (I soooo need to put pictures up on FB of his room.)

  4. Just happened across your blog….we have been moving as well to our little homestead. Working with what we have as we don’t want to go out and spend, spend.

    Look forward to getting to know you more.


  5. Hi Gayle
    Your email had me in tears – you are just so sweet – thank you for sending it!
    I hope the makeover goes well – I look forward to seeing what the end product is like! I’m sorry, but I can’t help with lamp colours – decorating isn’t one of my better skills!
    Have fun getting everything organised – I love moving because it’s such a fun, fresh start (although I really hate all the effort & packing that goes on before the setting up the house bit).
    I’d better go to bed as it’s getting late over here!
    Have a great day

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