just a little color – painted midcentury modern furniture

Painted Midcentury Modern Furniture - Directions Not Included

Adding a little color helps, right? I’m all for maintaing the classic appeal and natural finish of MCM furniture, but sometimes painted Midcentury modern furniture is the way to go. I honestly struggled with this piece so much. I bought it a few years ago for less than $25. It was beat up and not solid wood. It sat in its natural beat up state for a very long time but it needed help.

I was fully committed to a two-toned piece by staining either the drawers or outside, and painting the opposite white. That was an epic fail. I really wanted the outside stained since it was going against the white brick in our family room. Sanding, prepping, filling, all went to waste since the stain would just not take evenly anywhere on the piece. I tried a few versions including stains with poly but nothing seemed to give me the look I was going for. Insert my sad face and frustration. I would have taken photos, but I cried and admitted defeat. Here is there before. Sorry this is not the best shot and my dirty Converse are in the corner, but I live a real life and I am proud of it ;)

Painted Midcentury Cabinet - Directions Not Included Before

I ended up taking the paint brush to it all. White and robin’s egg blue – probably one of my favorite color combos. Totally off the mark for the piece, but I actually love the way it looks in the room.

Painted Midcentury Modern Furniture - Directions Not Included

Right now the floor is still in its original state of really worn “Cuban tile” but those will soon be replaced with either dark gray tile or polished concrete. I think having the pop of color will be a nice contrast to the space. Disregard the unfinished wall and the dog butt. Say hi Dylan.


I used a new paint (or new to me) from  Benjamin Moore called Advance. It is a water-based formula meant for trim and furniture. It is honestly a great product. I was so happy with how smooth it went on WITHOUT primer, had minimal visible brushstrokes, and just an amazing overall finish. I used a Satin finish but for those who like more shine they had Semi-Gloss and High Gloss finishes available.

Painted Midcentury Modern Furniture - Directions Not Included

Without a doubt we will be using the same paint for all the trim, baseboards and doors that need a new coat this year. So while it is not traditional for a Midcentury piece, what do you think?


PS – Benjamin Moore doesn’t know who I am. I do love the paint though.

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  1. says

    gorgeous- i do love some color and i think the colors you chose are perfect for the clean lines of this piece. it has a modern beachy feel.


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