Pottery Barn Knock-Off File Cabinet :: Themed Furniture Makeover Day

Date
Apr, 23, 2015

It’s time for another Themed Furniture Makeover Day! One of my favorite days of the month where I team up with some super talented bloggy friends and we each create a piece of furniture based on a certain theme. This month was definitely a bit challenging: Pottery Barn Knock Off.

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POTTERY BARN KNOCK-OFF FILE CABINET

Pottery Barn Knock Off File Cabinet

I honestly don’t know if I’ve ever been in a Pottery Barn. I’ve browsed their catalog and swooned over all the gorgeous things they create, but I had no idea what my options really even were. I headed to their website and after a couple days of perusing, I found this guy:

Pottery Barn File Cabinet

I would have LOVED to build something inspired by a PB piece but I just didn’t have the time. This little guy however, I could totally handle. It’s the Lincoln 2-Drawer File Cabinet coming in at a cool $599. Seriously?! Love you Pottery Barn but that’s just plain silly.

I knew finding a filing cabinet would be pretty easy, I feel like they’ve been everywhere lately. So, I hit my favorite shops and found this one at my first stop.

Metal File Cabinet

Price tag? $9.99. Much more my jam. It had it’s flaws, like most old filing cabinets do, but all in all it was in pretty good shape. And what’s up with people putting stickers all over these things? Luckily I was covering it with wood so I didn’t have to worry about peeling them off.

I’ve been all about the Balsa Wood lately, and knew it would be perfect for this project. If you’re not familiar with it, it’s super light weight. You can find it at most craft stores and you can cut it with scissors if you’re using the super thin pieces, like I was here. In total I bought 15.

Wood Pieces

Be careful if you’re doing this outside on a windy day. This stuff weighs next to nothing and I had to chase down a few as I was staining ๐Ÿ˜‰ I used my trusty Dark Walnut!

Dark Walnut Stain

After the stain was dry, I moved all my strips inside, and took shelter from the crazy wind we’ve been having here. To give my wood a weathered look, I did some white washing.

Chalk Paint

I poured some paint into a mason jar and added some water. I really just ball park it. Give it a good stir and then apply it with a foam brush to your wood. I did 4-5 at a time and then went back with a paper towel and wiped the access off.

Depending on how much you wipe off will determine the look your wood gets. I went through the process twice to get it where I wanted. Once it was dry, I sealed them all up using some General Finishes Satin Top Coat.

Next up was spray painting the filing cabinet. The Pottery Barn version is made with iron and I wanted it to look similar. I used this great Matte Black spray paint that gave it the perfect finish.

Black Spray Paint

Now before I could attach my wood to the filing cabinet, there was one little problem that needed to be taken care of: removing the lock. I called in the hubs for this job. Some blood may have been shed, but he got it off ๐Ÿ˜‰

I used some E6000 to attach my wood

Super Glue

And that, my friends, is how you save yourself over $500 ๐Ÿ˜‰

Pottery Barn Filing Cabinet

Grey Wash File Cabinet

DIY File Cabinet

DIY Pottery Barn File Cabinet

Pottery Barn Knock-Off File Cabinet DIY

Pottery Barn File Cabinet Comparison

I’ll be keeping this guy to put some of my crafting supplies in ๐Ÿ™‚ Definitely better than paying $599! Don’t get me wrong, I love the Lincoln Cabinet, but I don’t have that kind of money, so this is a great alternative!

And don’t forget to check out all the other Pottery Barn Knock-Offs below!

[inlinkz_linkup id=518522 mode=1]

Pottery Barn Knock Off File Cabinet

brepurposed

91 Comments

  1. Reply

    kp

    April 30, 2020

    Definitely going to try this out ! great idea! Would you be able to share the size of balsa wood used in this project? I see you have different variations from picture so it would be helpful if you can share the size of wood ! Also any other cheap alternative to balsa wood incase i dont see them in my store?

  2. Reply

    Be

    May 12, 2019

    Great looking file cabinet! You left out a critical part of the diy, though… how did your husband remove the lock????!
    That has stopped me many times from redoing our filing cabinets. I would appreciate any help yโ€™all can provide!!! Thx

  3. Reply

    Karen Ruiz

    July 28, 2017

    That looks amazing! Going to try it, I have two filing cabinets collecting dust in our garage. Could you tell me if the Balsa Wood was a sheet or did you buy them individually?

    • Reply

      brepurposed

      July 30, 2017

      I bought them individually! You can get them at most craft stores ????

  4. Reply

    Sally Osaki

    February 2, 2016

    I couldn’t believe what a nice job you did. Thanks for sharing. I have a very tall file cabinet in my garage. Guess what I’m doing next?

  5. Reply

    Emily

    May 1, 2015

    This is the most amazing filing cabinet makeover! I absolutely love it, thanks so much for sharing the process. I’ve included your post in my Five on Friday roundup! Have a wonderful weekend ๐Ÿ™‚

  6. Reply

    Tami @ Curb Alert!

    April 30, 2015

    Bre, I love that you used the balsa wood, so great to work with. Your cabinet looks stunning now and at a much better price point!
    ~Tami

    • Reply

      brepurposed

      April 30, 2015

      I love Balsa Wood! It’s so easy to work with and I love that it’s still real wood. Thanks for dropping by Tami ๐Ÿ™‚

  7. Reply

    Crystal

    April 30, 2015

    This is so fun! I’m glad I found you via The Creative Circle Link Up! I love the idea of themed link parties <3

    • Reply

      brepurposed

      April 30, 2015

      thank you Crystal! So glad you stopped by ๐Ÿ™‚

  8. Reply

    Karen

    April 30, 2015

    Hey gal, just wanted to let you know I will be featuring this on Monday’s Something to Talk About link party ๐Ÿ™‚ Have a great weekend!
    Karen

    • Reply

      brepurposed

      April 30, 2015

      Awesome! Thank you so much Karen! Have a great weekend too ๐Ÿ™‚

  9. Reply

    Nancy @ Artsy Chicks Rule

    April 30, 2015

    Wow! You knocked that one outta the park! Fabulous!

    Nancy

    • Reply

      brepurposed

      April 30, 2015

      Thank you so much Nancy!! This was a fun one ๐Ÿ™‚

  10. Reply

    Sarah J

    April 29, 2015

    Popping over from Create & Share =) Loved it, pinned it! I have a thing for filing cabinets right now, especially cute ones ๐Ÿ˜‰ Be sure to share your recipes, crafts, upcycles & DIYs at Two Uses Tuesday (Mon 8pm EST to Fri 11pm EST) over at Sarah Celebrates if you don’t already!

    • Reply

      brepurposed

      April 30, 2015

      So glad you stopped by Sarah! I will definitely stop by and link up ๐Ÿ™‚

      • Reply

        Sarah J

        May 3, 2015

        Hi again Bre =) You’re a Sarah’s Fav Feature this week! I hope you can make it again. Two Uses Tuesday starts Mon 8pm EST. Congrats!

        • Reply

          brepurposed

          May 4, 2015

          Awesome!! Thank you so much Sarah! Have a great night ๐Ÿ™‚

  11. Reply

    Amy | Canary Street Crafts

    April 29, 2015

    Shut up!! This is amazing!! I love it, Bre!

    • Reply

      brepurposed

      April 30, 2015

      Thanks so much, Amy!!

  12. Reply

    Emily Klimmek

    April 28, 2015

    Pottery Barn has such beautiful products but they’re so dang expensive. What a great DIY knock-off! I will definitely have to try your white wash technique on something – it looks so authentic! ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Reply

      brepurposed

      April 30, 2015

      Thank you so much Emily! And I know, I just can’t afford it!

  13. Reply

    Debi @ Surroundings by Debi

    April 28, 2015

    Bre ~ Just popping by to let you know I have featured you on my Tuesday Treasures post today! I loved this Pottery Barn Knock-Off File Cabinet. I am hoping to do this myself if I can get up enough nerve to do it. Hope you can join us again this week at the Thursday Favorite Things Blog Hop! Have a wonderful week!

    • Reply

      brepurposed

      April 30, 2015

      Yay thank you so much Debi!! You should totally go for it! Hope you have a great night ๐Ÿ™‚

  14. Reply

    Ann@farmhouseblues

    April 28, 2015

    Love this file cabinet and the balsa wood idea! I’ve never used balsa but cutting wood with scissors versus a saw sounds like my kind of project. I think I will be sticking this stuff to something very soon!

  15. Reply

    Bonnie

    April 27, 2015

    Your filing cabinet is gorgeous! This is the best filing cabinet makeover I’ve ever seen. Pinning this!

    • Reply

      brepurposed

      April 27, 2015

      Thank you so much Bonnie! And thanks for pinning ๐Ÿ™‚ Have a great night!

  16. Reply

    Danielle

    April 26, 2015

    You are so talented – this is amazing!! I actually like yours better than the PB one ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Reply

      brepurposed

      April 27, 2015

      Aw, thank you so much Danielle!

  17. Reply

    TidyMom

    April 25, 2015

    I love it!! I have a few in a closet that need to come out and play!!!

    • Reply

      brepurposed

      April 27, 2015

      Thank you so much! Sounds like it’s time to bring them out and glam them up!

  18. Reply

    Krista @ the happy housie

    April 25, 2015

    Unbelievably fabulous, you talented lady!!

    • Reply

      brepurposed

      April 25, 2015

      You’re too sweet ๐Ÿ™‚ Thank you, Krista! Hope you’re enjoying your weekend ๐Ÿ™‚

  19. Reply

    Christy @ Our Southern Home

    April 24, 2015

    OMG! This turned out fabulously! I can’t believe the transformation. I’ve never heard of Balsa wood. I’ve got to get my hands on some. ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Reply

      brepurposed

      April 25, 2015

      Thank you Christy!! And yes, you totally need to check out the balsa wood, it’s amazing!

  20. Reply

    Stephanie @ Casa Watkins

    April 24, 2015

    Love it! Definitely pinning this. Thanks for sharing. I stopped over from Your Turn to Shine.

    • Reply

      brepurposed

      April 25, 2015

      Thank you so much Stephanie! I’m so glad you stopped over ๐Ÿ™‚

  21. Reply

    Kathy @petticoatjunktion

    April 23, 2015

    Wow, that is one incredible makeover Bre. You go all out and it’s a 10 everytime!

    • Reply

      brepurposed

      April 25, 2015

      I appreciate that so much Kathy! Thank you! ๐Ÿ™‚

  22. Reply

    Jen @ Girl in the Garage

    April 23, 2015

    Bre this is truly amazing! I see filing cabinets at thrift stores all the time… and they are just so ugly. I’m really surprised that someone might pay that for the PB version. Yours is so stylish!

    • Reply

      brepurposed

      April 25, 2015

      Thank you so much Jen! I’ve been seeing them everywhere lately and this theme ended up being the perfect project to tackle one for!

  23. Reply

    Paula@SweetPea

    April 23, 2015

    Wow! I can’t believe that PB charges $599 for their version of this cabinet. Yours is just as attractive and will be a great storage piece for your craft items. If you come across another inexpensive filing cabinet, you probably could sell it after making over like this one.

    • Reply

      brepurposed

      April 25, 2015

      Right?! So expensive. And yes I totally should make more!

  24. Reply

    Marie@The Interior Frugalista

    April 23, 2015

    What a sweet idea to makeover a hideous metal file cabinet. Balsa wood and E6000 glue huh! Love it!

    • Reply

      brepurposed

      April 25, 2015

      They’re a match made in heaven ๐Ÿ˜‰ Thanks Marie!

  25. Reply

    Jeanette

    April 23, 2015

    I’m passionate about barn wood, real or not. So this would be perfect for me!!! Jeanette

    • Reply

      brepurposed

      April 25, 2015

      Awesome! Thanks for stopping by!

  26. Reply

    Heather J

    April 23, 2015

    Wow! That is awesome! I swear you just saved the life of my file cabinet. It’s had everything from paint to duck tape but I still always wanted it to be gone but you have completely changed my mind about getting rid of this baby! It looks as excellent, even better than the PB after you see their price tag. Thanks so much for sharing this! I’m definitely pinning!

    • Reply

      brepurposed

      April 25, 2015

      Thank you so much Heather!! I’m glad I could give you some inspiration for your old file cabinet!

  27. Reply

    Angie @ Postcards from the Ridge

    April 23, 2015

    Once again, another awesome makeover! And the price is so much better! Thanks for the great idea. ~ Angie

    • Reply

      brepurposed

      April 25, 2015

      Thank you so much Angie!! Have a great weekend!

  28. Reply

    Bethany at The Southern Couture

    April 23, 2015

    That is such a beauty and such a good idea to dress up some office decor. I love it! Great job!!! It doesn’t seem too hard either.

    • Reply

      brepurposed

      April 25, 2015

      Thanks Bethany!! It was super easy!

  29. Reply

    Christy@Confessions of a Serial Do-it-Yourselfer

    April 23, 2015

    WOW!! This could possibly be the coolest file cabinet anywhere. LOVE!

    • Reply

      brepurposed

      April 25, 2015

      aw thanks Christy! <3

  30. Reply

    Kimm at Reinvented

    April 23, 2015

    OH my goodness, it’s fantastic!! I am SO glad that I let my hubby talk me into keeping the hideous file cabinet that is sitting empty in our basement. And yes, it has stickers too. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    • Reply

      brepurposed

      April 25, 2015

      Thank you Kimm! And yes, don’t you ever let that filing cabinet go! I can hear it calling out for a makeover from here ๐Ÿ˜‰

  31. Reply

    Kristi

    April 23, 2015

    Holy smokes! It’s gorgeous Bre! I LOVE the weathered wood look and like it even better than that pricey original!

    • Reply

      brepurposed

      April 25, 2015

      Thanks Kristi!! I love me some PB but it is crazy expensive!

  32. Reply

    Katie @ Little House of Four

    April 23, 2015

    Great job on another beautiful makeover! I’m actually in the middle of doing the exact same thing for our monthly challenge! Great minds think a like!

    • Reply

      brepurposed

      April 25, 2015

      Thanks Katie! Can’t wait to see yours!

  33. Reply

    Erin

    April 23, 2015

    Dear Sweet Goodness Above! This is amaze balls!!!!

    • Reply

      brepurposed

      April 25, 2015

      haha thank you my friend!!

  34. Reply

    Jill @ The Rozy Home

    April 23, 2015

    Great job Bre (not that I’m surprised)!!

    • Reply

      brepurposed

      April 25, 2015

      Thank you so much, Jill!

  35. Reply

    Larissa ~ Prodigal Pieces

    April 23, 2015

    You completely rocked that little cabinet, Bre! Much better price and more fun to do. Great job. ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Reply

      brepurposed

      April 25, 2015

      Thanks Larissa!! SO much better than paying $599!

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Hi, Iโ€™m Bre! Follow along as we renovate our current home and share modern DIY ideas.
 

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