Repurposed beauty: 13 Old sewing machine cabinet ideas

Let’s talk about old sewing machine cabinet ideas. Have you ever thought about repurposing an old sewing machine table?

I’m going to make a bold claim: your sewing room décor doesn’t have to just stay in your sewing space.

Here’s why: I come across old sewing machine cabinets all the time. They’re easy to find in thrift stores, estate sales, garage sales and antique shops. A lot of times, the machines (if they’re there) are in bad repair, but the old sewing tables themselves are full of potential. With good construction and solid hardware (sometimes cast iron!), an old piece of furniture can easily be repurposed into unique furniture for your home.

By saving the table, you’re preserving beautiful pieces of history and

Here I’m going to share with you 13 great ideas to breath new life into old sewing machine tables and cabinets.

So grab some 100 grit sandpaper and chalk paint, and let’s DIY something pretty. is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a way for websites to earn advertising revenues by advertising and linking toSome of the links below are affiliate links. This means that, at zero cost to you, I will earn an affiliate commission if you click through the link and finalize a purchase.

What about the sewing machine inside that old cabinet?

This is a thorny topic. I hear you say, but what if you have a perfectly good table with a perfectly good sewing machine?

We’re all different people, and some people LOVE vintage sewing machines and would never sew on anything else. By all means, if you find a vintage sewing cabinet with a machine inside, rescue the machine and use it for good.

I’m NOT telling you to throw away the machine. However, I’ve seen many old tables with broken machines that need more work than they’re worth. If you can salvage the machine, please do so, but if you can’t keep reading.

Old sewing machine cabinet ideas

Revamp old sewing desks

Vintage Sewing desk makeover

For a non-destructive makeover, you can make this vintage sewing desk.

Read here for how to create this easy DIY sewing table.

This is a great DIY project because you can make it without losing access to your sewing machine.

Yay for the old Singer tables for making it possible to store the sewing machine AND still use the able as a regular desk.

Tips for this project:

Add a new table top

I love the pretty pale pink added to this old sewing table. The sewing machine was missing parts and wires, so adding the new wood top gives a fresh modern look to this vintage table. Also, the added drawer storage on vintage sewing machine tables is so practical. If you homeschool or have a student at home, this would be a great place for homework!

Drawer pulls on a painted sewing desk

This sewing machine table is a lot like the one that I redid. I really like the added drawer pulls on the front pop out storage. I can tell you on my table the catch to open up that mini-drawer is kind of finicky. Adding a couple drawer pulls is a genius way to make the desk more functional and lovely to boot.

Dining table ideas for repurposed sewing machine tables

Treadle base dining table

My great-grandma had one of treadle antique sewing machines! I’ve seen a lot of people use the cast iron bases of the tables and turn them into a dining table by affixing a new added table top. For a new top, you can use reclaimed wood as this person does below, butcher block or even a live edge slab.

The raw wood look is a nice contrast with the metal.  

If you try something like this, you may have to clean up the cast iron base with a rust cleaner. I’ve seen it recommended to spray paint the metal or even take it to someone who can powder coat the metal.

And if your antique machine is in poor shape, you can always use it around your house as décor too to show of a piece of history.

Turn sewing desks into a bar cart

There’s lots of different ways to add a container to hold ice, add a bottle opener and other additions to old tables. Here’s some fun makeovers:

Cool retro sci-fi bar cart

I love the added retro sci fi transfer on this table! These people did a great job creating a fun and unique table! There’s added rails to hold a steam pan for ice.

Repurpose an old sewing table into a Coffee cart

How smart to use the inside of this sewing machine cabinet to store filters and mugs. This is a great space saving idea for holding all your coffee gear.

Lemonade stand cart from a vintage sewing table

This is a pretty redo of a vintage sewing table. Something like this would be fun for a small lemonade stand in the summer.

Repurpose a sewing machine table into a coffee table

This is another project for treadle table bases from antique sewing machines. You might have to look carefully to find a table base with a low enough profile to work as a coffee table. Below is a good example.

Make unique side tables from treadle machine tables

I’m not sure of the sewing machine maker of the original table, but this is a cool base to make a fun side table out of. The same lady has also made several things from the parts of sewing machine tables that are unique ways to repurpose old sewing tables. What a great way to show off history!

This would also be the perfect DIY for a bedside table.

Make a vanity table from a treadle machine table

You could absolutely paint a table like this if you wanted to. Below is a great idea for turning a sewing machine table into a vanity table. I love this! The sewing machine tables from this era have such cool drawers in them that are the perfect extra storage for makeup supplies. I often see standalone drawers like this in the antique stores near me for a pretty penny.

Create a kitchen island from vintage sewing machine tables

Space saver kitchen island from a sewing machine table

A sewing table could be perfect for a small kitchen island. You might need to mount a vintage table on caster wheels or another base to raise the table to the perfect height for you, but this is definitely a workable solution for kitchens.

Marble topped kitchen island

This lady added a marble top for a slightly larger sewing machine table turned kitchen island.  A narrow table like this could also make a good console table.

Butcher block topped New Home sewing table kitchen island

This one is so fun! This lady added a butcher block slab to the top of an old sewing cabinet.. What a gorgeous kitchen island!

So hopefully that gives you some old sewing machine cabinet ideas to keep in mind the next time you find a battered old table that still has some life in it.

Check out more sewing room inspiration:

1 thought on “Repurposed beauty: 13 Old sewing machine cabinet ideas”

  1. Mary Jean Cunningham

    These are great!!! I have a sewing machine table my father made for my mother in the 1960s which I love – has drawers down one side similar to the pink-painted one featured above. However, for most of my sewing I use my father’s old desk, which he purchased for 5 dollars when he retired – lots of storage with drawers on both sides down to the floor, a very large laminated worksurface that is smooth and easy to clean, and the bonus of a pull-out shelf under the desktop on the left-hand side intended for a typewriter which supports knit fabric so it doesn’t stretch while I’m sewing it. Love how well-made things can be so inexpensive and so wonderful!

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