I ordered a small, 4oz. bottle of Unicorn Spit several months ago and it’s just been sitting in my workshop. I also have several cans of different wood stains and I’m not one to throw anything away. There’s always a need for leftovers in my workshop. Time for a cabinet makeover!

This time around, I didn’t have to build a thing. I have this simple, glass door cabinet that my dad built for me nearly 10 years ago. It was originally used as storage in a very outdated bathroom in my rental. Of course, it has sentimental value so I wasn’t going to part with it. And, like most of my pieces, I just wait to be inspired. This cabinet makeover is so easy, literally anyone can do it in less than a day.

Thanks to our friends at Rustic Duck Furniture, I was crazy inspired by her Vintage Turquoise Paint Technique and I’m so happy with the final results. I adapted her technique to create my own look, which I encourage you to do – practice on some scrap wood pieces. I used only about 2oz. of Unicorn Spit and very little leftover wood stain I had from other projects.

Create a vintage look using Unicorn Spit and wood stain.

My favorite part about this project is, first and foremost, layers are key, so touchups are ideal! If you don’t like how a spot looks, just add more paint or more stain. You might notice that the drawers, shelves, and top of my “finished” piece are coated with polyurethane. I haven’t perfected the sides yet because I keep adding darker and lighter stained spots and layering them with more Navajo Jewel Teal Unicorn Spit.

How To Prep Your Furniture For A Vintage Makeover

Unless the piece that I’m working with is very delicate, I always start with a wipe down using TSP and water. If the furniture is very old, or has a lot of greasy or other tough buildup, then often you can use Mineral Spirits. Always wipe with clean water afterwards and let dry.

Use this technique to achieve a vintage furniture look

The best way to make the colors pop is to use this on bare wood. However, my cabinet was painted white which worked better, actually. I just rough sanded it with a 220 grit to deglaze it and prep for paint and stain absorption.

How To Achieve The Vintage Look

To apply the Unicorn Paint, I used a simple, cheap chip brush from Home Depot. I wasn’t looking for a smooth or perfect application. The chippier the better. You want it to look worn and like it’s been refinished several times. Like a rescue piece!

This cabinet makeover is simple enough to complete in less than a day

I used some torn cotton t-shirts over my finger to dip into and apply the stain. I used a darker stain, Varathane in Kona, and a lighter one, Varathane in Briarsmoke.

Before they would completely dry, I took a dry, lint-free towel and sort of dragged it across the surface to create more blending and feathering. Once the paint and stains dry – at least 24 hours – then apply wax or polyurethane.

A cabinet makeover with a rustic, vintage look

I definitely love the vintage, almost southwestern, look of the cabinet versus the solid white. I didn’t paint the inside or change the knobs because I like the way the white on the interior makes the color pop. And, other than having to buy my Unicorn Spit Gel Stain, I had everything else so it cost me next to nothing.

What do you think of the final result of my cabinet makeover?

Vintage cabinet makeover inspired by Rustic Duck Furniture

About Author

Dusty is the editor of As Mom Sees It, a family lifestyle and travel site. She is a wife and mother of two in Ohio.

Dusty has been featured on ABC, on Mom Talk Radio and in iBlog Magazine. Her creations have been featured on Craftgawker, DIY Weddings, and in 2013, As Mom Sees It was named one of the Top 50 New Product Review Sites by Cision.

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