White-Wash and an Armoire

Finally, this monster of an armoire is finished!  It only took 6 weeks from start to finish. Which is actually quite surprising considering I really enjoyed the process of white-washing. But, as life has it, things got in the way and I was distracted by other projects and my constant obsessive-compulsive cleaning habit. So I took Easter Sunday {a day when mostly everything is closed} as a day to tie up some lose ends around the house {organized my closet, donated some clothes and did some detail cleaning in the kitchen in addition to finishing the armoire}.

We originally were given this armoire from my mother who was just going to leave it in her Florida condo when she moved to Asheville. It is heavy and beast-like so I can understand how the thought of moving it made her short of breath. But, fortunately, Chris owns a truck and we had a roommate at the time to help relocate it to The Dreaming Tree 2 hours away. It sat in here for 2 years unpainted and looking awkward in the space intended to be our dining room {I say intended as we really don’t have a true dining room}.

When I told Chris I wanted to white-wash it, he politely told me, “It’s all you babe.” I don’t think he wanted to deal with it anymore either. He did his part getting her to her new home.  But I needed it to have a fresh, brighter look. And it is such a gorgeous piece by itself, I knew this DIY would be the cherry on top.




We have been using her to store booze, wine and glassware on top and dog food at the bottom.


To accomplish my white-wash effect, I researched best methods and found that 2 parts white paint mixed with 1 part water gave the best results. I used an eggshell semi-gloss white paint.

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As you can see, I just dove right on in there to paint the inside. A girls got to do what a girls got to do!


So THE PROCESS went a little something like this: paint on the mixture of 2 parts paint with 1 part water {well mixed} and then immediately after, use a standard sponge to wipe in the direction of the grain. You can leave it at one coat if you like the look or go for a second if you feel you want more coverage. Once dry {and because it’s water-based, it dries quick}, I added a light coat of polyurethane to give it a slight shine and make it softer to the touch. The shine is subtle, though, as I didn’t want to lose the rustic look. A word of caution: use tarp and old clothes because this project gets drippy!


{I used a small brush for some of those tiny nooks which really helped get better coverage.}



The more I loosened up with this project, the more I realized it isn’t supposed to look perfect. It was freeing and fun. I wasn’t stressed about one spot looking darker than another or uneven brush strokes. It was very relaxing when I found the flow to it all! I actually didn’t go back on a second coat using the paint brush but rather with what was left on the sponge. I found this gave a bit more of a white look to it yet didn’t mask the wood-tones completely. The sponge applied far less paint than the brush would have.







And, well, I had to jazz up the inside 😉 No longer just a storage space but now a quite cute little bar.



I must say, white-washing is now pretty high up on the list of my favorite DIYs!



{Yours in Design – Meg}

Meghan Kathleen

I’m a creative junkie, DIY-er, sanctuary-seeking, wine-drinking, yoga believer with an itch to write a little bit. Newlywed, hopeful mom-to-be and devoted believer in Universal Energy. Peace and good vibes, please and thanks!


  1. Omg you are now one of my absolute favs!!!! And I love tour style of writing! And I LOVE the simplicity of telling the “how to”. No joke we have a brown armoire (it’s one of my beginning posts) and I want to do a “wash” rather than solid so I am now more excited than ever because sometimes I don’t feel like researching and just want someone to share what they did AND make it easy. And holy cow you accomplished that perfectly with your words and pictures – just a perfectly written blog post! Great job – the armoire is simply STUNNING

    • Melissa- thanks so much for your kind words! Made my morning reading this 🙂 I saw your beautiful armoire and think a white-wash would look fantastic! And I promise it is seriously one of the most fun projects you will undertake. I so appreciate your feedback on how I provided direction. I am by no means a pro or do I write perfect tutorials. Would much rather share the real experience in a relatable way 😉

  2. Meghan, I am getting ready to white wash an Armoire and I was told I had to strip it first? Is that true? It’s a cherry finish. I loved your blog, you make it look simple.

    • I would certainly suggest sanding it if it has a smooth finish! My armoire was unfinished, so I could just dive right in and do it. The more you can sand it, the greater the tones will come through with a white-wash. Good luck!!

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