New Use for an Old Entertainment Center

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Whether you'd like additional storage space in a dining room, a designated piece to organize a laundry area or a compact study spot, a revamped entertainment unit may accommodate your needs. Tweak your old unit and remove or add shelves, doors, baskets, trays and hardware to fit its new function.

Organize the Laundry Room

  • Create an all-in-one laundry center. Remove all of the cabinet doors and decorative hardware from the existing unit, then apply a fresh coat of paint in a perky hue such as lime green, tangerine, sunny yellow or turquoise. Slide matching wicker baskets onto some of the shelves to store small laundry-related items such as clothespins, lint brushes, spray bottles, sewing kits and spot removers. Place larger articles including laundry detergent, bleach, fabric softener and irons on easy-to-reach shelves in plain view. Install a clothes rod near the top of a large shelf area as a convenient spot to hang clothing that requires ironing or air drying. Attach a hook on one side of the new laundry center to hang a lightweight ironing board.

Time to Study

  • Create a mini office from an old entertainment unit as a designated space. Tack fabric-wrapped corkboard to the interior spaces of the converted work station as convenient spots to pin messages, pictures and notes. If your center doesn't have an existing upper-shelf inside, install a simple, horizontal shelf for books. Affix a sliding shelf inside the entertainment center to provide a desktop for reading, writing and studying. Conceal office supplies, file folders, small electronics and other work-related articles in bottom cabinets with hinged doors.

Just for Baby

  • Apply a fresh coat of paint in a gender-friendly hue such as ivory, white, sage green, soft yellow or misty gray to update the piece. Hang wallpaper on the interior back wall of the unit for a finished appearance. Install custom-made drawers on some of the unit's open shelves as spots to store a baby's clothes and shoes. Place woven baskets or plastic bins on a few shelves to stash supplies such as diaper fasteners, bottles, brushes and diapers. Use open shelves to stack extra blankets, pillows and quilts. Situate a changing-table mattress on top of the large shelf where the television sat.

Dining Room Helper

  • Remove the top doors and hardware from the unit to create exposed shelving for stacked plates and glassware. Apply a coat of fresh paint in a color that enhances the room's existing palette. Attach small hooks to the top underside of an open shelf to hang lightweight coffee or tea cups. Place decorative items such as pots of faux greenery, candlesticks and colorful bottles throughout the open shelves to generate visual interest. Stash table linens, serving trays, napkins and large dishware inside the bottom enclosed portion of the unit.

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