Refinish A Wooden Storage Cabinet And Add Monagrammed Lettering To Its Surface

An old wooden storage cabinet can be resurfaced, stained, and varnished before adding monogrammed lettering to the front of it. The finished project can be given to your child who is going to be attending college in the spring, and it can be used to hold important papers, school books, and assignments. The steps below will teach you how to complete this project.


  • vinyl drop cloth
  • wood cleaning agent
  • scrubbing sponge
  • towel
  • power sander
  • sanding disk
  • soft cloth
  • water
  • masking tape
  • cordless drill
  • paintbrush
  • mixing stick
  • wood stain
  • wood varnish
  • letter stencils
  • double-sided tape
  • scissors
  • glossy paint
  • artist's paintbrush

Clean And Resurface The Cabinet

Carry the wooden cabinet outdoors and carefully set the cabinet on top of a flat surface that has been covered with a vinyl drop cloth. Completing the project outdoors will prevent you from breathing toxic fumes or making a mess inside of your home. Use a scrubbing sponge to apply a wood cleaning agent to each side of the cabinet. Dry the wooden surface by wiping it off with a towel.

Attach a sanding disk to the base of a power sander. After turning the sander on, press the disk lightly against the wooden cabinet's surface. Move the disk across each side of the cabinet until the wood has a smooth texture. Lightly dampen a soft cloth and move the cloth across the sanded wood. The damp cloth will pick up pieces of sanding dust that are on the cabinet. 

Use Stain And Varnish To Coat The Cabinet

If there are pieces of trim or knobs on the cabinet that you do not want to be exposed to stain or varnish, cover them with strips of tape. You can also use a cordless drill to temporarily remove pieces that aren't going to be coated with stain or varnish. After using a stick to blend stain, coat a paintbrush with stain and apply the stain evenly to each side of the cabinet.

Before coating the underside of the cabinet, make sure that the other sides that have stain on them are dry. Apply a coat of varnish over the stained surfaces. When the varnish has dried, remove the tape from the trim or knobs or use a drill to secure the items if they were previously removed.

Apply Monogrammed Lettering

Purchase letter stencils that represent your child's initials. Use double-sided tape to attach the stencils to the front of the cabinet. Use an artist's paintbrush that has been coated with glossy paint to fill in the stencils. One or two coats of paint may need to be added to ensure that there is plenty of coverage. When finished with the project, remove the stencils and carry the cabinet indoors. Surprise your child with the newly-decorated cabinet. 

For more information, visit a website such as