I inherited this great sewing machine from the 1940s from my grandma. It works great, and has all sorts interesting attachments (which I haven't figured out how to use yet). It is actually hardwired into this cabinet. The style isn't exactly my taste. I don't care for dark wood and I had a particular aversion to the trim which also served as the handles for the drawers and door. So my mom and I set to work to refinish it in a style that suited us both better.
As you can see, the top was used and abused. I like distressed, but not this kind of distressed.
My Inspiration for the finish...
Day one: We pried off the old trim and basically tried to spackle with wood filler. I'm sure that may not be the right way, but it got the job done. Then we sanded like crazy with an electric sander and primed. It needed two coats of primer because the red varnish was showing through where we hadn't sanded all the way.
Day two: First I painted some light blue on the edges and anywhere I wanted to show through later. We used a tea light candle to rub on these areas to make it easier to sand off the white later. Next, two coats of white paint.
Day three: We painted the inside a light blue, so when the table is open and in use you will see it. When the table is closed, the only blue you see is along the routered edge and handles.
Before distressing and oil
Day 4: The fun part, we took the electric sander to the whole thing and distressed it. Then we rubbed a dark walnut oil on to take away the stark white and make it look it's age.
The handles were $2.50 at hobby lobby. They had a dark metal finish. We painted them with our light blue paint (no primer needed), and sanded the edges to show the scroll work.
Here is what it looks like when opened up in use.
The blue work surface we sanded to give it this two toned look.
For the door we used a smaller knob which seemed too small compared to the larger pulls on the drawers, so we added some wood scrolls.