Upcycled Entertainment Center into Child’s Wardrobe

This is what happens when I head into the thrift store looking for a small project to work on. I didn’t find anything but pressed wood junk, and then there’s this big beast. I stop, I stare, I talk to myself. Do you do that? Well, after much discussion with me, myself, and I, I decided to haul this bad boy home. Meet my latest project…an upcycled entertainment center.

Vintage Entertainment Center Before Upcycle by Larissa of Prodigal Pieces | prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

The funny thing is that I have seriously backed off my furniture projects for more reason than one. However, I needed to fulfill a requirement and this would fit the bill. It has damage, but has potential. Also, it would help me fulfill one of my bucket list pieces of creating a child’s wardrobe.

Entertainment Interior | prodigalpieces.com

Side of Vintage Entertainment Center | prodigalpieces.com

I’m usually pretty anal about checking things over before I bring them home. I saw the damaged veneer, the messed up hardware, and need to retrofit it for my needs. However, what I completely missed was the odor.

Damage to Veneer on Entertainment Center | prodigalpieces.com

The weird thing is it didn’t stink from the outside, but only inside the upper portion. Well, that pretty much deemed this unusable for my requirement. But…I’m not a quitter and feel you would benefit from me showing you how to tackle a smoky piece. Plus, it seems cast-off entertainment centers are now a dime a dozen. Grab the next one you see!


One other thing I found was that the drawer, at some point, had these adhesive pieces added to store CD’s inside. They were easy enough to pop out and I passed them on to a someone who could use them. Not a thing gets wasted around here!

Entertainment Center Drawer Before | prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

American Masterpiece Collection Furniture by Hickory Entertainment Center | prodigalpieces.com

*post contains affiliate links so you can find the products I love to use too. (see full disclosure)

Next, I began to remove damaged veneer and fill all those ginormous gouges with wood filler. See the mud on the feet left to dry? Geesh. Someone really didn’t care for this thing.

Wood Filler Spots on Upcycled Entertainment Center | prodigalpieces.com

In addition to making repairs, I also took out the built-in electrical outlets (saved for later), and added piece to cover the holes for cords. Round dowel cut into discs filled some of the holes, while scrap wood pieces covered others. My little man had fun helping me make the pieces needed.

Boy Sawing Scrap Wood to Help with Upcycled Entertainment Center | prodigalpieces.com


Of course, I also need to do some building in order to make this upcycled entertainment center into a child’s wardrobe. The only other thing missing is a clothing rack. Thankfully, that’s a simple fix with a few blocks of wood and a dowel.

I used my Kreg Jig to add pocket screw holes. Then, I used my drill and forstner bit to make a spot for the dowel to rest. Doesn’t this look like a surprised face that I’m doing so awesome?!? hee hee.

Wood Block with Pocket Joint Holes | prodigalpieces.com


Then, after all the prep is done, it’s time for mission “smoke-free” to begin. I will be straight-up honest and say that over the years I have tried everything there is to cover, remove, alleviate smoke from pieces I’ve inherited. Soaking it in sunshine is always a great option, but unless you have months at your disposal, there’s not any other way to treat it naturally.

However, if you really want to kick the smoke fest in the fanny, here’s what I do. You need to cover the ENTIRE THING, even underneath all parts, with this shellac primer.

This particular primer not only blocks stains that I encounter with this mahogany piece bleeding through, but also odors. It is nasty stuff to work with, but it WORKS. When I say nasty, I’m referring to the chemicals in it. I purchased the version in the white base to provide color block too. However, you can purchase it in a clear version if you prefer the wood to peek through.

The onliest way to use it efficiently, productively, and safely is in a sprayer. With my HomeRight Super Finish Max, I had the entire entertainment center covered in less than 30 minutes from setup to finish. Just make sure you wear a respirator with organic filters, work outside (or well-ventilated area), and safety gear. The best part? It only takes one coat and the odor is GONE. I’m doing the happiest of happy dances over here!!

HomeRight Super Finish Max to Help Take Care of Smoky Furniture as demonstrated by Larissa of Prodigal Pieces | prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

You can view it in action on my YouTube videos on my channel. Here’s an example below.


When my primer is dry, I apply two coats of a basic white paint and call that part done. Yahoo! The only thing next is to add a bit of whimsy with wallpaper and add the hardware. My little guy chipped in to help again. Sniff…he’s getting so big!

Young Son Helping Mama in Upcycle DIY | prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces #diy #home #homedecor #furniture #kids

Here is my upcycled entertainment center turned child’s wardrobe. I LOVE IT!

Vintage White Wardrobe DIY from Upcycled Entertainment Center by Larissa of Prodigal Pieces | prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces #furniture #diy #home #baby #nursery #homedecor

Vintage White Wardrobe for Baby Girl by Larissa of Prodigal Pieces | prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces #furniture #home #baby #girl #nursery #homedecor

I wanted to keep the outside neutral, but let the fun happen on the inside. That way, you could leave the pocket doors open on a daily grind basis and have a clean finished piece for guests.

Adorable Upcycled Entertainment Center turned into Wardrobe for Baby by Larissa of Prodigal Pieces | prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces #diy #baby #nursery #furniture #homedecor #diy

Baby Girl Clothing Wardrobe made from Upcycled Entertainment Center by Larissa of Prodigal Pieces | prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces #diy #home #homedecor #baby #nursery #diy #furniture

Upcycled Child's Wardrobe for Baby Nursery by Larissa of Prodigal Pieces | prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces #diy #furniture #home #homedecor #nursery #baby

Now, this provides storage, whimsy, and an heirloom piece that can be handed down from generation to generation.  I even included these cute wooden hangers to make it handy. Do you love it too?

Side View of Upcycled Entertainment Center Turned Baby Girl Wardrobe by Larissa of Prodigal Pieces | prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces #diy #home #baby #furniture #homedecor #nursery

Antique Child's Rocking Chair with Handmade Doll by Larissa of Prodigal Pieces | prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces #antique #handmade #doll #baby #home #homedecor

I don’t know about you, but kids grow up way too fast. I feel as if I blink I’ll miss it all. sniff… This child’s wardrobe idea can even function for adults too. It’s a handy space for extra storage within a piece of furniture if closet space is limited.


If you’d like to own this newly created piece, you can find it available in my online shop. (SOLD) We do deliver to your door for half the cost of most. Stop by to see what else is available for your home and gift ideas too.

Shop Prodigal Pieces | shop.prodigalpieces.com

You can create this Upcycled Entertainment Center turned Child's Wardrobe too! | Details at prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces #diy #home #furniture #homedecor #upcycle

Do pin and share my upcycled entertainment center to inspire others to recreate their found items.

Check out this upcycled entertainment center turned child's armoire for nursery decor by Larissa of Prodigal Pieces | DIY details at prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces #diy #furniture #baby #nursery #home #homedecor

Up next, it’s Trash to Treasure Tuesday time! I am sharing what I create with my stash of metal “junk” (aka. #trashure). Head HERE TO SEE.

Salvaged Metal Junk Before Upcycle | prodigalpieces.com

To get these DIY tips & tricks in your inbox, be sure to sign up for my newsletter. PLUS, you will get your FREE Furniture Buying Checklist and special discount to my shop. Until next time!

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More fun projects like my upcycled entertainment center:

Say whaat?! This upcycled bookcase was turned into an adorable pretend play farmer's market stand. Larissa of Prodigal Pieces shared the DIY details on her blog prodigalpieces.com | #prodigalpieces #kids #toys #handmade #home #homedecor #furniture #diyRepurposed Radio Cabinet Turned into Whimsical Dollhouse by Prodigal Pieces | prodigalpieces.com


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  • Micah

    This turned out very nice. I like the wallpaper in side!

    November 7, 2019 at 8:49 am Reply
    • Larissa

      Thank you, Micah. It’s a paper leftover from a vintage radio cabinet I upcycled.

      November 7, 2019 at 9:29 am Reply
  • Stephanie

    It’s beautiful, you’re very creative❣️

    November 7, 2019 at 9:45 am Reply
    • Larissa

      Thank you for the love, Stephanie! 😀

      November 7, 2019 at 12:45 pm Reply
  • Linda C Johnston

    Another outstanding transformation! Great job!

    November 7, 2019 at 10:11 am Reply
    • Larissa

      woot! Thank you so much, Linda. 😀

      November 7, 2019 at 12:45 pm Reply
  • Susie | Chelsea Project

    Love this so much! I believe that old TV unit pieces are the unsung heroes of the refinishing world. It’s easy to refinish a piece to continue its original function, but to refinish and repurpose… that’s a new level. Super congrats. Some little girl is going to be thrilled with this little gem.

    November 7, 2019 at 10:21 am Reply
    • Larissa

      You are so fun because you get it, Susie. Thank you! I sure would love to have room for a few to store my craft and fabric fun.

      November 7, 2019 at 12:46 pm Reply
  • Patty Soriano

    SO sweet! You have such a great way of putting things to another use !!

    November 7, 2019 at 11:50 am Reply
    • Larissa

      I’m tickled to hear it, Patty. I sure have fun trying and hope to inspire.

      November 7, 2019 at 12:48 pm Reply
  • Marie

    Beautiful save and clever repurpose for this old entertainment center, Larissa! A little girl is going to be very happy with her pretty new wardrobe, thanks to you. Pinned

    November 7, 2019 at 12:03 pm Reply
    • Larissa

      Thanks, Marie! I kinda got suckered into two large pieces, but I had fun giving it a go. 😀

      November 7, 2019 at 12:49 pm Reply
  • Mary Loveland

    How fun is this wardrobe! Love that wallpaper too….well done again Larissa!

    November 7, 2019 at 8:33 pm Reply
    • Larissa

      I had such fun with it. Thank you, Mary.

      November 7, 2019 at 9:06 pm Reply
  • Jeanie-Q

    Very cute! They use to make storage like this for children. I had one for my son when he was a baby 50 years ago. Yours is way cuter.

    November 7, 2019 at 8:44 pm Reply
    • Larissa

      aww…that’s awesome! I’m sure you had as much fun as I did.

      November 7, 2019 at 9:06 pm Reply
  • Rena

    Great job, Larissa!

    November 7, 2019 at 9:56 pm Reply
    • Larissa

      Thanks, Rena! Finally got around to getting this idea out of my head. 🙂

      November 9, 2019 at 8:07 pm Reply
  • Kaycee

    Hi Larissa, what a sweet piece of furniture for a little (or big) girls room! I love the pretty paper you used too. Thank you for sharing all your helpful tips.

    November 8, 2019 at 10:59 pm Reply
    • Larissa

      Yay! Thanks so much. Yes, that’s my way of thinking – that’s it’s perfect for so many uses.

      November 9, 2019 at 8:08 pm Reply
  • Becky

    Oh how pretty! This one is beautiful inside and out! Very nice job!

    November 10, 2019 at 9:40 pm Reply
    • Larissa

      You are so sweet to say that. Thank you very much, Becky! 😀

      November 11, 2019 at 7:24 pm Reply

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