the wood wardrobe with the painted interior

by | Mar 27, 2016 | All Things Home, Antiques, Before and Afters, Furniture Makeovers, Miss Mustard Seed's Milk Paint | 42 comments

I know that some of you probably think I paint everything.  I will paint my mother, if she will just hold still long enough!  Well, that’s not at all true.  While paint is “my thing”, I really appreciate beautiful wood, too.

When I acquired this old wardrobe off of craigslist, I wasn’t sure if I would paint it or not, but when I saw it in person, I decided against it.  The wood just has a pretty grain pattern, warmth and it was in good condition.  Most wood pieces I purchase have issues with the finish, so painting is the best route.


This one just needed a little bit of help.  I felt like it would benefit from installing shelves and painting the interior.

I painted it in two coats of MMSMP Mora…


(Here it is after the first coat.)

My dad installed the shelves, similar to the way he installed the shelves in Megan’s office wardrobe.  You can find the details on that HERE.

And, here is how it turned out…


It was so shadowy the day I was taking the pictures that I had to pull out my reflectors, which I don’t usually need in the multi-directional light I have at the studio.


I had requests for more behind-the-scenes shots, so there you go!

Anyway, I just love the way the paint brightened up the interior and how it plays against the tone of the wood.


I left the finish on the milk paint raw.  It soaked into the raw wood, so it will be nice and durable.


mms-5847 mms-5856 mms-5861 mms-5863

The little planter baskets are from Ikea and I made some preserved boxwood topiaries to fit inside.  I have so many real plants in my house now, that I don’t feel like I *need* as many preserved boxwoods to add greenery, so I’m bringing a lot of my custom-made topiaries and boxwood balls to sell at Lucketts.

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I just placed an order for over 50 hemp sheets along with some other antique European linens, so those will be listed in the online shop, soon.  I’ll also list some soaps and brushes this week…


  1. Hannah Rose

    Can’t wait for the soaps and brushes listings! I’m a fan of whatever you do! 🙂

  2. Nancy

    As much as I love the whites, I think Mora is my favorite MMSP color!

  3. karen l

    “some preserved boxwood topiaries I made” What???? Tutorial please Marian!

  4. Sheran Steading

    Beautiful. I am so glad you didn’t paint the outside.

  5. Anne

    I love it!

  6. karen piehl

    you have probably already thought of this, but those old fashioned wooden hangers would be another wonderful thing for you to market — with your milk paint colors on them of course. i love them! so glad to see that you left this lovely wood natural on the outside. and the milk paint is perfect on the inside. thanks for all you do and share, karen

  7. Melissa Leach

    I have a wardrobe similar to this and I feel the same way as you about painting the beautiful warm wood. Painting the interior is a great compromise and update. Thanks for sharing.

  8. Melissa Leach

    PS…Yes please, a tutorial on preserved boxwood topiaries or wreaths!!!

  9. Rowena Philbeck

    I love the way you just painted the inside. I agree..some just are beautiful they way they are.

  10. Cathy

    Looks lovely, quite sure the wood is pitch pine.

  11. Gloria M.

    Hi Marian,
    Such a beautiful wardrobe! I’m still amazed by your restraint not to keep some of your beautiful “creations” …even if it’s for business? You have been hitting them all out of the ballpark lately!!! I so look forward, with great anticipation, to each and every one of your next masterpieces! Most of all, thank you for taking the time to always share with us!

  12. Marlene Stephenson

    I love this cabinet it is beautiful. Love the little slip, so cute.

  13. Deborah Deaton

    Hello Marian! I am bringing you sunshine and warm temps from the southernmost tip of Illinois! I love all of your creations and this beautiful color you used for the interior just brought out the richness of the wood on the exterior! Just stunning! Please, please give us a tutorial of your boxwood topiary. I would be most grateful! Thank you for always presenting such interesting items and visuals! Have a blessed day.


  14. krista

    It’s perfect. : )

  15. Noelle Leigh

    Love this!!! Marian, what do you do about “smelly” pieces of furniture? I have a wardrobe like this I would love to do something with, but the inside smells…well…old. Maybe you could do a blog post on this?

  16. Karen

    Hello Marian,
    I love your decision to let this piece be as it was, “beautiful wood”! Adding the shelving and painting the inside only enhances the warm wood tones. Kudos for you my dear! I will have to try your paint some day….:)

  17. Terrie Schmidt

    Beautiful, just beautiful… this almost makes up for the overly chippy chest. LOL!!

  18. Pamela

    Perfect color for the inside and leaving the wood was a great idea. I love the behind the scenes shot too. I always admire how you have such a knack for staging. That is where I struggle or maybe I should just said “fail” so I am always trying to garner ideas from those that seem to have an eye for it.

  19. PJ

    Lovely, just lovely!

  20. Marcia

    Lovely! So much better to have the interior lighted up!
    kisses ML

  21. Laurie

    You are so good at styling and photography!

  22. Jamie Bowers

    Love it!

  23. Cheryl


  24. Melinda

    Amazing piece! You just know what to do.

  25. Stephanie

    I love what you did with this! The color looks beautiful against the wood. And the shelving is perfect. Mora is my newest milk paint addition. I used it to paint a small desk (that was free) to use as a sewing table. Love the color. Love them all, really.

  26. Lori Martin

    that’s a beauty!

  27. Lynn Merrell

    Beautiful! My husband says he’s afraid if he sits still too long I’ll paint him, so I feel your pain!?

  28. Rebecca M


  29. AnnW

    You really are some great photographer. this is one of my favorite pieces that you have done. Besides the landscape dresser. I love the wood. Did you know that those Waco Flip people Chip and Joanna have a furniture line now? One of the features is that line of scalloped wood. What’s old is new again. I love the way your dad put in the shelves. Gorgeous piece.

  30. Susan Hooke

    Love what u did with this piece! I have been looking for something just like this! We have a large walk in closet that is open to our bathroom. Separating the his side from the her side is an area that is about the width of this armoire with wire shelves 12 inches apart for our linens. I so want to rip those shelves out and put a beautiful armoire that I can close with our sheets and towels & misc. right now I have two different style of baskets that hold everything. I’ll keep scouring Craiglist for Armoire & I was even told in the antique action it might be referred to as a pie safe ( due to the shallow depth) ????? All I know is there are way toooo many, toooooo deep 80 & 90’s tv cabinets . ?

  31. Iris

    Lovely post! Thank you!

  32. Sarah | She Holds Dearly

    Oh, I just love it! Now I am looking at my t.v. armoire with new eyes, haha, look out!

  33. Naomi S.

    Good call on the wardrobe, Marian. The wood on the outside is exceptionally beautifully grained, I think. It would have been a shame to cover that up. But the paint on the inside gives a nice contrast to the outside. Beautiful piece.

  34. Krista

    That is one beautiful piece! Love what you did with it and how you styled it! Your photography is always so pretty!

  35. JeanFB

    Oh my goodness this piece is stunning! Beautiful work. It’s one of those pieces that actually gets me dreaming about renting a u-Haul and making a loooong trip…. 😉

  36. Amy

    Marian, I feel exactly the same way about paint. If it’s not tied down, you better watch out! When you first showed that piece, I thought “Oh, don’t paint that one…” That’s surprising for someone like me!

    I LOVE what you chose to do with this piece! The inside paint, the shelves, everything. LOVE IT!

  37. Karin

    I am making my first trip to Lucketts this year specifically to come to your booth and I CANNOT WAIT! Will this cabinet be at your booth? Would be perfect storage for my son. See you then!

  38. Marsha

    This piece is so pretty. I love how you painted the inside and left the exterior natural — lovely pictures, as usual.

  39. LAComfy

    OMG! This piece is so nice! I like it. Thank you so much for this article!

  40. marylisa noyes

    this would be an awesome pantry. Love it


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Marian Parsons - Miss Mustard Seed

I’m Marian, aka Miss Mustard Seed, a wife, mother, paint enthusiast, lover of all things home and an entrepreneur, author, artist, designer, freelance writer & photographer.  READ MORE to learn more about me, my blog and my business…


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