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Art Deco Buffet Revived with Paint & Stain

Time for round two! Are you ready? If you missed the first installment of our Battle of the Buffets, be sure to see the first makeover of an antique in this post. You’ll want to take a peek so you can vote at the end of today’s fun and enter to win this week’s giveaway (I love to share!). Today, the entrant is this vintage Art Deco buffet that has seen better days.

Battle of the Buffets by Prodigal Pieces |

Mid Century Buffet Before |

Let me tell you why…first, it has damage to the top with chemical/burn stains, it is sagging badly in the middle, veneer missing, and the doors won’t stay shut. Nothing we can’t fix, right?!

Damaged Top of Mid Century Buffet |

For some reason, in Art Deco and Mid Century pieces they made them have a great expanse, but did not provide enough support to them. Then, after several years they begin to sag trying to manage the weight.  See below.

Sagging Damaged Buffet |

I have encountered this time and time again, and it can make the drawers not function and, in this case, the doors hang open.


This is when we flip it over and take a look at how to rebuild the bottom to hold all that weight. See the feet that my husband, JC, added to support the center?

Repairing Damaged Mid Century Buffet |

Then Mr. I , our oldest son and lone competition, and JC made the necessary adjustments to close that half-inch sagging gap, and we’re good to go.

Next up is to begin the refinish. Mr. I is the one who is taking over this makeover and give it a good sanding with my sander. He is not new to this game. You can see his past projects HERE.

To start, he uses Early American to give the drawers a rich color. This particular color of stain has long since been one of my favorites used in my home and on many items seen in these posts.

Staining the Mid Century Modern Buffet Drawers |

Once the stain is cured, he applies a matte poly topcoat for a durable finish using the Palm Pro.

Palm Pro Paint Brush for Smooth Topcoat Finish by Prodigal Pieces |


While the topcoat is curing, he decided to use the soft metallic paint Pure Gold for the knobs. I can never say enough good about RustOleum paints. They go on wonderfully and provide great durability.

RustOleum Pure Gold for Mid Century Knobs |

Time to switch back to getting the cabinet of his Art Deco buffet done. When deciding on a color, he wanted it to stay true to the era, but bring it a modern vibe. He decided to go with a color called Very Navy by Behr in a Glidden Eggshell. The Square Brush made it a breeze for him to cut-in and get crisp lines.

Painting with the Zibra Square Brush for Crisp Lines |

It’s lookin’ good! The last thing was give it a second coat and let everything cure.

Meet the new and revived vintage Art Deco buffet…

Vintage Art Deco Buffet Revived with Color by Prodigal Pieces |

Vintage Art Deco Buffet in Navy Blue by Prodigal Pieces |

From boring and dated to sleek and modern. It’s a fun new look that keeps to the era, but brings it back to life.

Modern Chic Art Deco Buffet by Prodigal Pieces |

Mr I. and JC made new shelves to give those cabinets purpose and extra storage space. You can never have enough storage, right?

Open Vintage Art Deco Buffet ~ Makeover by Prodigal Pieces |

My favorite is the vintage Waverly wallpaper lining used to keep with the geometric feel and add that extra fun touch. Also, you can see how I’ve used it in other applications HERE.

Vintage Waverly Wallpaper Lining Mid Century Buffet ~ See the makeover at Prodigal Pieces |

Mr. I rocked this makeover from top to bottom…literally. I’m proud of him and all his work.

Gorgeous Blue Vintage Art Deco Buffet by Prodigal Pieces |


Although we love every piece we work on , we can’t keep them all. You can find this buffet now available in my shop, along with other furniture, vintage finds, and handmade goods.

Shop Prodigal Pieces |

Now…{{drumroll please}} The winner is both of us. haha!! The widget I used to take votes stopped working and when it did we were a couple of votes apart, so because of that Mr. I and I called it a draw. What’s for dessert? You will see that up next, so be sure to stay tuned.

We hope you had fun because we sure did. Do pin and share this Art Deco buffet makeover to inspire others to give DIY a try. It’s fun!

Check out how this vintage Art Deco buffet was given a modern feel. Makeover at Prodigal Pieces |

Up next, our backyard makeover continues as we give this hot mess of an area a facelift. You don’t want to miss the after HERE. Be sure to stay tuned and sign up for my newsletter. PLUS, you will get your FREE Furniture Buying Checklist and special discount to my shop. Until next time!

Backyard Mess Before DIY Update by Prodigal Pieces |

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Also, more projects like this Art Deco buffet:

Vintage Buffet Gets Night and Day Makeover by Prodigal Pieces |

Art Deco never looked so good! This vintage waterfall buffets gets a French twist makeover by a teen. Come see how it's done at Prodigal Pieces |

65 replies on “Art Deco Buffet Revived with Paint & Stain”

I did but just in case Mr I rocked it, sorry Larissa but then again he is the student of the master. Congrats to both ?

Love them both! My vote will have to go to Mr. I., I find it incredible that a teenager takes an interest in a project of this size.

Mr. I did a beautiful job! It was hard to vote, because I love both pieces for their own beauty. His buffet warmed my heart, because I had just recently done an old waterfall men’s dresser and a similar nightstand in the same style – navy with stained wood, for my son. It’s a great combination.

Love them both but my husband and I both were excited over your son’s. Sorry – he got the vote! Great job and I know you both had fun!

Not sure if this is where I vote or not loved them both but have to go with Jon…. seriously love his….

This was really a tough call Larissa. You know how much I swoon over the one you did with that soft color and the white glaze. But I am also really, really partial to MCM. Being that Mr. I. is so young and he did such a fantastic job, I have to vote for him. You have done well to teach him such a valuable skill and I’m also learning about those slouchy middles.

Wow! You two are so talented. Both buffets are beautiful but Mr. I’s is more my style and his makeover is just stunning! He really has an eye for taking something from blah to beautiful. But you do get to enjoy the proud mama bragging rights so you’re both winners!

I would love to vote for Mr. I but can’t see a place to vote. I love what he did with that buffet! Very talented.

Both really fantastic! I couldn’t get the survey to link so I’m voting here… I vote for Larissas project. I prefer that style furniture, however both were really great and both winners imo. ☺️

The survey isn’t showing any options…just the big box so I’m voting here. Tough call both are beautiful. While your son rocked his makeover, yours is more my style. So I’m voting for yours. What a fun thing to do. You’ve taught him well!

BOTH Beautiful pieces and not wanting to get in the middle of mother and son; I see it as a tie, as you are Both winners in my book.
Congratulations to you both on your beautiful pieces of work

I couldn’t access the survey, on the SurveyMonkey. I am very impressed by both projects!!! Your buffet is more my style, so my vote goes to you! This bonding and memory making time with your son on these projects will never be forgotten! You both deserve a Gold medal!! Keep the good time memories going!!

I, too am unable to vote in the survey box, as it will not allow a ‘scroll down”.
My vote is for Mr. I – I am such a sucker for blue- I guess you could say “It blue me away !although they are both gorgeous!

Mr L did a good job! I like his choices on where to add paint and stain. I have a hope chest from the late 30’s-early 40’s that might be a good candidate for his ideas. That said, I voted for the vintage piece because it’s more my style!

Thanks, Nancy! I kinda did the color choosing and he did the work. He is still building up his confidence on color choices and wanted my opinion. He does wonderful work!

You know how much I love your work, Larissa and I loved your white washed buffet but Mr. I got my vote. I’m so impressed by his talents but also his willingness, as a teenage boy, to learn and work alongside his Mama. Why enjoy just one dessert when you can each make each other’s favorite and have a dessert party around your brand new firepit. Just say’n!

You are both winners because each of the buffets are exquisitely done! It was such a hard decision…such pressure! After careful consideration, I voted for yours. Mostly because it is more my style and I’m still swooning over that inside color. However, Mr. I made me like that art deco buffet, so I almost went with that. But the deciding factor was that I want to see what dessert he makes. Because he probably inherited/learned that talent from you as well, so it will be “sweet” to see what he comes up with! Cheers to both mother and son!

I love your buffet style, but I love Mr I’s colors. I recently did a Thomasville dresser in a similar color, not sure what the name is because it was a oops can at Home depot for $9, and I just love it. He definitely learned from the best tho. I love all of your past projects and look forward to many more. Mr J deserves kodos also for his awesome repairs ❤

I agree with Paula.. both are winners! I did however pick Mr. I’s simply because I’m not an MCM fan – buuuut this piece made me smile from ear to ear. Fabulous job Mr. I …. but what did I expect, you have an AMAZING teacher. Can I come and share that dessert? hehe 😉

Your buffet style is right up my alley and I’m going to try that technique on a piece I have. Mr. I’s is an incredible makeover though! Lots of work and a great vision for that piece. 2 desserts coming up!

I must admit, when I saw the first photo with the blue paint, I thought’ oh no’ , but it is gorgeous!! Never would have been so brave, but I really like it. Both pieces are lovely, can’t pick a favorite, but the blue wins on originality. I have a buffet sitting right behind me that needs some of your talent! Good job guys!

Wow, this is really well done! Nice work Mr. I! I have to confess though… I voted for the first choice. : ) I’m a glazing fan. : )
P.S. I like seeing which brushes you choose for different tasks. I wondered where the square would be used.

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