Rustic Nightstand Makeover

An easy and inexpensive nightstand makeover for a thrifted piece of furniture.

A nightstand makeover using paint sticks and stain |

In January I shared the mood board for the guest room redo, which included a new nightstand from West Elm. After starting the redo and assessing my needs and wants for the room, I decided to stick with what I had and to try to give the old nightstand a new look.

*This post contains affiliate links.

Changing the Look of a Nightstand | Chatfield CourtI bought this piece years ago at a thrift store. It was really inexpensive but the problem was that you could tell. Although it’s made of wood there was a big gap on both sides that I wanted to try to disguise with trim. Instead of trim though, I came up with another idea.

Changing the Look of a Nightstand | Chatfield CourtI decided to try to use paint sticks to give it a different look and to cover up the gaps. Because I love the look of planked walls, I thought I would try that idea but on a much smaller scale (and on a piece of furniture). I figured that I had nothing to lose by trying and dove right in.

The supplies I used to complete this project were 25 paint sticks, a razor knife, sandpaper, dark walnut stain, and Elmer’s wood glue.

Changing the Look of a Nightstand | Chatfield Court

First, I laid a few of the paint sticks on the nightstand so I could see where the seams would lay. Once I had an idea of what I wanted, I used the razor knife to cut the notched handle off, so that I had straight pieces. Next, the rough edges were lightly sanded smooth. Since one stick wasn’t long enough to fill a whole row, I ended up using a small piece of another stick. I also staggered the seams to keep the rustic feel.

Changing the Look of a Nightstand | Chatfield Court

Next, I used a paper towel and dark walnut wood stain on each paint stick.

The paint sticks I got were all made from different wood, so that really added to the rustic look. I wasn’t sure if I would like it but I really loved the differences in the wood tones. 

Changing the Look of a Nightstand | Chatfield Court

After they were dry, which didn’t take long, I glued each piece to the side of the nightstand. To ensure that my sticks stuck, I ended up using a heavy weight and some canned beans to weigh them down until they dried. Once I finished one side of the nightstand, I flipped it over and glued down the other side. That’s it. This project really was so easy but it did take me take me some time to complete because I had to let the glue dry before I could remove the weights and move on to the next row.

You can really see the difference in the wood tones in this pic. 

A-Rustic-Nightstand 7

To add to the rustic look, I also replaced the glass knobs with oil-rubbed bronze knobs that I already had.

So what do you think? Is this nightstand makeover something you would try? I like that it was practically free to do. I already had the glue and the stain on hand and the paint sticks were free. There’s nothing better than free!

Now I have a “new” rustic-looking nightstand.  


A DIY nightstand makeover using paint sticks and stain |

As always, thanks so much for stopping by!


Check out a few of my other upcycle projects I’ve done on furniture.  

Turning an old, rusty typewriter table into a DIY industrial nightstand with spray paint.

DIY Thrifted Industrial Nightstand

Turning an old dresser from Goodwill into a beautiful furniture piece for a guest bedroom.

DIY Goodwill Dresser Makeover

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  1. Monday,March 31, 2014 / 7:23 am

    Wow, I love the transformation. Look how smart you are.

    • Kristi
      Monday,March 31, 2014 / 10:58 am

      You’re so sweet. Thanks so much.

  2. Monday,March 31, 2014 / 7:49 am

    This is so creative and beautiful. Would you consider using a stained pull now to carry the dark sides across the front of the piece?

    • Kristi
      Monday,March 31, 2014 / 11:01 am

      Thanks so much Jennie. That’s a great idea about the pull. ๐Ÿ™‚ I’ll have to try it out.

  3. Carisa
    Monday,March 31, 2014 / 10:36 am

    Wow, that is so beautiful and super creative to use paint sticks!

    • Kristi
      Monday,March 31, 2014 / 11:04 am

      Awww, thanks so much Carisa for the lovely compliment Carisa.

  4. Emily
    Monday,March 31, 2014 / 1:01 pm

    Wow, genius! I really love it! I just shared my dresser makeover and have been looking for inspiration on redoing my night stands. My mom has almost the exact night stand…. I may have to work this magic on it next time I’m there (or steal it…..)

    • Kristi
      Monday,March 31, 2014 / 3:30 pm

      Thanks Emily. I’m loving the dresser that you redid. I like that you didn’t paint the top, that contrast makes it more interesting. I say steal the nightstand ๐Ÿ˜‰ I would love to see what you do with it. Thanks so much for visiting.

  5. Shirlee
    Monday,March 31, 2014 / 12:19 pm

    I really like it. Very clever idea using the paint sticks. I always grab an extra one when buying paint but I always end up losing them by the time we reach the truck. I think they slide out of the shopping cart and end up either on the store floor or parking lot.
    Nice that you could use something you already had instead of having to buy something new.

    • Kristi
      Monday,March 31, 2014 / 3:31 pm

      That’s funny Shirlee. That happens to my husband too…they just disappear.;) I always appreciate your visit.

  6. Monday,March 31, 2014 / 5:20 pm

    How creative! I would have never thought to do that. I like how the wood tones down the traditional look of the night stands just a bit. Great job!

    • Kristi
      Monday,March 31, 2014 / 5:30 pm

      Thanks so much Sarah! I think that I like that it tones down the traditional look too. I wasn’t sure it would work, but I’m glad that it did. Thanks for stopping by.

  7. Monday,March 31, 2014 / 7:43 pm

    You are so creative! Great job ๐Ÿ˜‰

    • Kristi
      Monday,March 31, 2014 / 9:18 pm

      You are so sweet, thanks Rayan!

    • Kristi
      Wednesday,April 2, 2014 / 1:55 am

      Thanks so much Karin! I will be heading your way.

  8. Lin
    Wednesday,April 2, 2014 / 5:33 pm

    I love the new look of these. I have two of the exact same tables in our bedroom……I will keep your idea in mind. Thank you for sharing.

    • Kristi
      Wednesday,April 2, 2014 / 7:47 pm

      Thank you so much Lin. ๐Ÿ™‚ Come back and share if you end up redoing your nightstands.

  9. Treshea Johnson
    Monday,April 7, 2014 / 11:28 am

    I absolutely love this Re-Use Project. Your idea has inspired me to use this with pallet wood on Kitchen Cabinets that we got for free. When we made an island out of them there wasn’t a back and I have been trying to figure out something to do. THANK YOU!!

    • Kristi
      Monday,April 7, 2014 / 4:42 pm

      So glad that my idea could inspire you Treshea. It sounds like your island is going to look great. I would love to see it after you’re finished. Thanks so much for reading and for your nice comment.

  10. Monday,May 26, 2014 / 7:41 pm

    I was already looking around at my furniture half way through your post, trying to find a victim for this creative look! Can you tell I love it? thanks for sharing.

    • Kristi
      Monday,May 26, 2014 / 11:22 pm

      Thanks so much for visiting and for the sweet comment!

  11. Thursday,July 24, 2014 / 3:18 pm

    Isn’t that just beautiful? What a great idea – thanks so much for sharing, I love it, it’s just so perfect against the paint !

    • Kristi
      Thursday,July 24, 2014 / 6:01 pm

      Thanks so much Suzan! I love it and never expected it to come out like it did. ๐Ÿ™‚

  12. Thursday,July 24, 2014 / 5:32 pm

    You are such a clever girl. What a great idea. I love the classy look of the dark against the clean white.. And you would never imagine that it was paint sticks..Great job..Happy Thursday..Judy

    • Kristi
      Thursday,July 24, 2014 / 6:03 pm

      Thanks so much Judy! I like the contrast of the dark and white too. Now I want to try it on everything I see. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  13. Thursday,July 24, 2014 / 10:18 pm

    What a creative idea! You made it seem so simple to create. It is gorgeous. Thanks for sharing your work ๐Ÿ™‚ – Mel @ Melly Moments Blog

    • Kristi
      Friday,July 25, 2014 / 12:01 am

      Thanks Mel. It really was an easy project to do. So glad you stopped by.

  14. Thursday,July 24, 2014 / 10:44 pm

    I love the idea of using paint sticks. I really like to look it adds to the nightstand. I am in love with dark walnut stain and white, I am going to be using this combination on my kitchen table. Great work!

    • Kristi
      Friday,July 25, 2014 / 12:04 am

      Hi Megan. I love dark walnut stain and white too. Something about the contrast that makes it interesting. Thanks for stopping by and commenting. Good luck with your kitchen table.

    • Kristi
      Friday,July 25, 2014 / 6:34 pm

      Thanks so much Marie. I appreciate you coming over to visit and for commenting.

    • Kristi
      Saturday,July 26, 2014 / 5:31 pm

      Thanks so much Bri! ๐Ÿ™‚

  15. JaneEllen
    Saturday,July 26, 2014 / 3:38 pm

    I have to say I absolutely love look of your night stand and even better that you redid a piece you already had. Don’t know how much night stand at West Elm was but guessing enough to take family out to dinner? You did such an awesome job on that night stand, I’d sure buy if you were selling. The style and changes you made on it really give the stand interesting style and look. Pinning this so I don’t forget.
    I have a table I got at Hobby Lobby years ago, want to change it to go with style/colors when we paint our bedroom. Right now it’s dark all over with dark wicker fronts on drawers. Will figure out how to include your idea into redoing the table. Room will be coral walls with apple green furniture, maybe some white, still thinking about that part. I might have to try your idea on table in living room, like things to have different slant. Your table is such wonderful inspiration. Happy summer days

    • Kristi
      Saturday,July 26, 2014 / 7:28 pm

      What a nice comment Jane Ellen. Thanks so much. The West End nightstand was pretty expensive, more than I wanted to spend for a guest room, so I’m glad that my little project worked out and I didn’t have to spend any money.
      It sounds like you have some great ideas for your bedroom. I hope that you are able to try this project. I would love to hear about it and see pictures if you do!
      I appreciate your visit. Happy summer days to you.:)

  16. Saturday,July 26, 2014 / 5:19 pm

    Wow, it looks completely a great way! You did a fabulous job!

    My weekly Say Gโ€™Day Saturday linky party is on right now and this would be a wonderful addition. Please stop by and say gโ€™day if you have a minute!

    Best wishes,
    Natasha in Oz

    • Kristi
      Saturday,July 26, 2014 / 5:32 pm

      Thank you Natasha! Heading over now to say g’day. Thanks for the invite.

      • Friday,August 1, 2014 / 6:13 pm

        G’Day from Oz! I just wanted to pop back to let you know I am featuring you at my blog this week as one of my Friday Favorites.

        Best wishes,
        Natasha in Oz

        • Kristi
          Friday,August 1, 2014 / 10:24 pm

          Wow…thanks so much for featuring me Natasha!

  17. Sunday,July 27, 2014 / 11:12 am

    Stopping by from That DIY Party….This looks great! I love paint sticks but I never thought of using them like this! Great idea! Following you on social media – love if you’d follow back however you like!

    [email protected] Domestic Heart

    • Kristi
      Monday,July 28, 2014 / 12:04 am

      Thank you Shelly. I’m so glad you stopped by. Off to checkout your blog and follow.

    • Kristi
      Wednesday,July 30, 2014 / 11:44 am

      Thanks! Steal away Meagan. LOL I would love to see what you come up with!

  18. Wednesday,July 30, 2014 / 9:01 am

    Hi Kristi! I just wanted to let you know that I LOVE your Paint Stick Nightstand, and I’m featuring you as one of my Rockstars this week from Creativity Unleashed!

    As a Rockstar you’re in the running for this week’s MEGA Rockstar! Grab your friends and come vote at

    The MEGA Rockstar gets loads of love including:

    1. Shout outs on all my social media houses.
    2. A bucket full of Pins to my biggest group boards
    3. A big sidebar ad proclaiming them the MEGA Rockstar of the week
    4. And a feature in my weekly newsletter!

    Congratulations and Good Luck!!!

    • Kristi
      Wednesday,July 30, 2014 / 11:49 am

      Wow…how exciting! Thanks so much for featuring my nightstand Gwen. Totally made my day. ๐Ÿ™‚

  19. Wednesday,July 30, 2014 / 2:31 pm

    I love the contrasting wood. I’ve been wanting to do something with paint sticks and now I really want to.

    • Kristi
      Wednesday,July 30, 2014 / 5:46 pm

      Thanks Havalah! Hope you try it. I would love to see what you do.

  20. Bobbi
    Wednesday,August 6, 2014 / 9:24 am

    What a nifty idea!! How creative!! Love the look of the wood and white. I am looking for ideas for my bedroom furniture. Even though they’re wood…after seeing this, I think the color I want to go with is White. I could somewhat have the same look!!

    Thanks for sharing!!

    Pinning it!

    • Kristi
      Tuesday,August 12, 2014 / 2:52 am

      Thanks so much Bobbi! I think that painting your bedroom furniture with some white and leaving some wood would look great. Would love to see it. I appreciate you visiting and commenting and pinning! ๐Ÿ™‚

  21. Tuesday,August 12, 2014 / 7:52 pm

    How clever! I love how this turned out. I would never have thought to use paint sticks. Thanks for sharing with Creative Spark Link Party.
    Glenna @ My Paper Craze

    • Kristi
      Tuesday,August 12, 2014 / 10:20 pm

      Thanks so much Glenna! I’m glad I found your Creative Spark Link Party…so fun. Thanks for hosting.

  22. Wednesday,August 13, 2014 / 6:13 am

    Kristi what a simple concept that makes a big difference. I just had to feature it on this weeks Creative Spark Link Party. Hope you can stop by again this week and check it out, maybe link up again!

    • Kristi
      Wednesday,August 13, 2014 / 3:39 pm

      Thanks so much Michelle! Love your party…so fun.

  23. Debra Aubin
    Thursday,August 14, 2014 / 12:49 pm

    That is REALLY NICE I love the look very smart. I will have to copy cat you on this one for sure.
    Thank you for sharing

    • Kristi
      Thursday,August 14, 2014 / 6:48 pm

      Thanks Debra. I would love to see what you do to copy this. Good luck!

  24. Saturday,August 23, 2014 / 10:49 pm

    This is great! I think I may try this technique on top of some tables! Thanks for sharing! ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Kristi
      Saturday,August 23, 2014 / 11:16 pm

      Thanks so much Kristina! If you try this I would love to see it.:)

    • Kristi
      Thursday,October 16, 2014 / 2:35 am

      Thanks Trish! ๐Ÿ™‚


  25. Friday,October 17, 2014 / 1:07 pm

    I absolutely love your night stand. I was just wondering why you didn’t put the stained wood sticks on the top? I think that would have looked really really good. It still is very nice perhaps on another one you can try putting them on the top. Best wishes

    • Kristi
      Saturday,October 18, 2014 / 4:13 am

      I thought about doing the top the same as the sides but held off for now. Still loving it like it is.
      Thanks so much for stopping by and commenting.

  26. Allie Reyna
    Sunday,September 6, 2015 / 11:09 pm

    Love it, going to try it on an ikea shoe holder, its just boring white. What kind of glue did you use?

    • Kristi
      Monday,September 7, 2015 / 1:25 am

      Thanks Allie! I just used plain old Elmer’s wood glue. I did add a weight on each section as I glued them though, and I’ve not had any problems with it. Hope that helps.

      Good luck, hope your project turns out. I’d love to see it when you’re done.

  27. Thursday,January 21, 2016 / 5:31 pm

    Brilliant idea! This looks sooooo good! I love the way you took this little table to a whole other level! Well done!
    Hope you have a great day!

    • Kristi
      Friday,January 22, 2016 / 2:01 am

      Thanks so much Terry for the lovely comment. I had no idea how it would turn out when I started it, but I love it. I appreciate your visit. Have a great weekend. ๐Ÿ™‚

  28. Saturday,March 26, 2016 / 8:56 pm

    The nightstand turned out just right. What a clever idea to use paint sticks. Plus it looks good with the stain wood and painted wood. It is a classic look.

    • Kristi
      Monday,March 28, 2016 / 11:27 am

      Thanks so much Debra. I am really happy with the way it turned out and it was a super simple, and cheap, project to do. ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Kristi
      Sunday,May 29, 2016 / 1:31 am

      Thanks, Carol. It was one of those projects that I wasn’t too sure about when I started it but loved the results. ๐Ÿ™‚

  29. Tuesday,May 31, 2016 / 8:27 pm

    What a SUPER creative and inexpensive way to transform a piece of furniture! GENIUS!! Pinning and sharing! Thank you so much for sharing at The Wonderful Wednesday Blog Hop!

    • Kristi
      Thursday,June 2, 2016 / 3:04 am

      Thanks so much! It was such a fun project to do. ๐Ÿ™‚

  30. Wednesday,June 1, 2016 / 5:36 pm

    I am seriously in love with this rehab! We bought a furniture set when we got our first apartment a while ago, but the nightstand was always lacking in my opinion. This would be perfect to spruce it up a bit!

    It would be great if you wanted to come over to my weekly link party and share this post:
    Hope to see you there! : )

  31. Wednesday,June 1, 2016 / 6:40 pm

    Very Cute, Love how it turned out!

    • Kristi
      Thursday,June 2, 2016 / 3:05 am

      Thanks, Amanda! I’m thrilled with the way it turned out.

  32. Wednesday,June 1, 2016 / 9:16 pm

    I love the look of the planked sides and was surprised to learn you used paint sticks. Pinned! Thank you for sharing at Merry Monday!

    • Kristi
      Thursday,June 2, 2016 / 3:06 am

      Thanks so much! My husband thought I was crazy but I think it really works. ๐Ÿ™‚

  33. Thursday,June 2, 2016 / 10:10 am

    Beautiful mind you have to think of this idea! It looks soooo good! I would so love it if you would come share some of this inspiration at Making Broken Beautiful over at The Curator’s Collection! The party runs every Thursday thru Sunday and has just started. You do amazing work and I do hope you will come inspire! I hope you have an amazing day!
    The Curator’s Collection & Making Broken Beautiful Thursday

    • Kristi
      Saturday,June 4, 2016 / 2:41 am

      Thanks so much for the sweet comment, Terry, it truly made my day. I’ll definitely come over to check out your party. ๐Ÿ™‚

  34. Thursday,June 2, 2016 / 7:33 pm

    I love the contrast of the white nightstand against the dark stain. It looks amazing, and I never would have thought those were paint sticks!

    • Kristi
      Saturday,June 4, 2016 / 2:43 am

      Thanks, Vineta. I wasn’t so sure when I started but I’m thrilled with the way it turned out. Thanks for stopping in. ๐Ÿ™‚

  35. Monday,June 6, 2016 / 10:42 am

    This is beautiful! Thank you for linking up with Dream. Create. Inspire. Link! You’ll be one of our features this week!

    • Kristi
      Tuesday,June 7, 2016 / 1:58 am

      How exciting! Thanks so much, Cat!

  36. Wednesday,June 8, 2016 / 3:56 am

    What a smart way to solve this problem. I am also in the process of redoing my dresser and this is such a nice look. Thanks for the inspiration. Pinning! Kristi, I host a new link party Sweet Inspiration that runs Friday till Tuesday. I would love to have you join us.

    • Kristi
      Friday,June 10, 2016 / 2:28 am

      Thanks, Mary, I appreciate it. This one of my favorite projects to do. I’ll definitely stop over to your party. Thanks for the invite.

  37. Wednesday,June 8, 2016 / 7:45 pm

    This is absolutely brilliant! Visiting via Moonlight and Mason Jars.

    • Kristi
      Friday,June 10, 2016 / 2:10 am

      Thanks so much, Lisa. I appreciate it. ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Kristi
      Monday,June 13, 2016 / 1:55 am

      Thank you! ๐Ÿ™‚

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