I Repurposed a Changing Table Into a Desk!

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Repurposed Changing Table Into a Desk!



Repurposed changing table: How to Repurpose a changing table into a desk - Thrift Diving


I hacked a changing table into a desk!

Is it totally un-modest to say that I am really proud of this repurposed changing table project?? Because I am really proud. Not only did I bust out my RYOBI circular saw, but I also didn’t let many pieces go to waste.

AFTER! – Repurposed Changing Table!

Repurposed changing table: How to Repurpose a changing table into a desk - Thrift Diving

1-Click here to pin this desk!

This is how the changing table sat for the last year: taking up space in an abandoned room that will someday soon be fixed up. And you see that old chair? I made that over, too, with a fresh coat of white paint. I found that next to a dumpster alongside my ombre dumpster desk!

Repurposed changing table: Use an old changing table and turn it into a desk for an older child. - Thrift Diving

How to Repurpose a Changing Table!

Don’t you hate spending a lot of money on stuff for kids? They outgrow it so quickly! Especially changing tables. Once they start rolling over after 4-5 months, that changing table is obsolete–at least, for changing. You have to either sell it or repurpose it.

I vote for repurposing 🙂

Materials Needed to Hack a Changing Table

(I participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for me to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites).

  • Changing table (check thrift stores if you don’t have one from your child)
  • Circular saw or jigsaw (for shortening the change table to desk height).
  • Gorilla Glue
  • Brad nailer (or hammer and nails)
  • Furniture paint (check out my post What’s the Best Paint for Furniture? for tips on choosing a good furniture paint)

STEP 1: Removal the changing table shelves

I had to remove the shelves so there was space for a chair and legs. I also did a preliminary coat of Annie Sloan Chalk Paint in Antibes Green to see if I would like it, per my 7-year old’s color suggestion. LOL 🙂

Repurposed changing table: Reinforce the top of the changing table with plywood to make a desk top. - Thrift Diving

STEP 2: Reinforce the Top of the Changing Table

I knew I would need to reinforce the repurposed changing table top as a desk because it was a cheap, thin particle board. I decided to use this board below as a reinforcement. I had found the board in a stack on the side of the road. Hubby complained about me stopping to pick it up, but when you see FREE BOARDS, you.do.not.keep.driving. You haul that stuff home!

I  used some of the other boards to reinforce the back of my French Provincial Desk makeover. So you see, dear hubby???

Repurposed changing table: Cut a reinforcement piece of plywood to make a desk top. - Thrift Diving

(And oooooohhhhh….how I LOVE my RYOBI circular saw that I scored at the Haven DIY bloggers conference!  It’s super easy to use, and I love how interchangeable the battery is with other One Plus RYOBI tools. Yeah. THAT circular saw…..  LOL. This face is no lie–I really DO get that excited about power tools! I’m not much of a girly girl. Sorry!

Repurposed changing table: You'll need a circular saw or a jigsaw to hack a changing table. - Thrift Diving

I painted it in Annie Sloan Florence. OMG….THE.BEST.COLOR.EVER. Hands-down, my favorite color.

Repurposed changing table: Paint the changing table with a pop of Annie Sloan Florence chalk paint. - Thrift Diving

I used Gorilla Glue Epoxy to glue the reinforced piece to the repurposed changing table top.

Repurposed changing table: Use Gorilla Glue to glue a piece of plywood to the changing table for stability.. - Thrift Diving

STEP 3: Cut down the legs.

To turn this repurposed changing table into a desk, it needed to be shorter. I taped off the end (so that I could use the edge of the tape as a guide for straightness) and cut off 3.5″.

Repurposed changing table: Cut the legs of a changing table to make it a desk. - Thrift Diving

Again, my circular saw came in handy.

But I could have used a jigsaw as well.

(Related: How to Use a Jigsaw: The Easiest Tutorial EVER for Newbies!)


Repurposed changing table: Cut the legs of a changing table with a circular saw to make it a desk. - Thrift Diving

STEP 4: Upcycle the scraps into pencil holders!

I saved those 3.5″ scrap wood leg pieces and used them to make the cutest little DIY Snowman Pencil Holders 🙂

Repurposed changing table: Cut off legs and use scraps of changing table legs to make Snowmen pencil holders - Thrift Diving

STEP 5: Cut off the sides that “look” like a changing table.

I couldn’t decide whether to keep or cut off the curved sides of the changing table. I didn’t want it to look like a changing table, and those rounded edges screamed “BABY FURNITURE!” to me. Nope. Buh-bye!

Repurposed changing table: Cut off rail of changing table before repurposing. - Thrift Diving

I had some of this scrap wood from God-knows-where lying around, so I decided to use it to cap off the edges. No more rounded edges! 🙂

Repurposed changing table: Cut off rail of changing table before repurposing and replace with flat piece of wood for a more modern desk. - Thrift Diving

STEP 6: Use the BOTTOM shelf of the changing table for a whiteboard.

Before I had a minivan, this is how I lugged furniture home from the thrift store. Well, notice the bottom of the shelf bottoms. THEY’RE WHITE. And not only white but they’re vinyl-y, like whiteboard material! I got the genius idea to upcycle one of the bottom shelves as a whiteboard, if I just flipped it over, then used my nail gun to adhere it to the back of the repurposed changing table! LOVE THAT!


Hauling Changing Table


And remember the post I did recently about making a drawer organizer out of scrapbook paper? I added one of those DIY drawer organizers inside for the kids, too. 🙂

Repurposed changing table: How to Repurpose a changing table into a desk - BEFORE and AFTER - Thrift Diving

STEP 7: Find an inspirational quote and stencil it on.

I’m obsessed with this idea of hanging inspirational quotes around my house, in the hopes that my kids will read it repeatedly and it will just, well….sink in. So I found an awesome quote by Confucius, the Chinese philosopher. I used my Silhouette Cameo to cut it out. Considering that this is a desk where my kids will do homework, I want them to be inspired when they’re being challenged:

“It does not matter
how slowly you go as
long as you do not stop”
~ Confucius


Repurposed changing table: Stencil a motivational quote on a desk. - Thrift Diving


Here’s the stenciled quote after:

Repurposed changing table: Stencil a motivational quote on a desk, such as Confucious. - Thrift Diving

Repurposed changing table: Upcycle an old changing table into a desk for your older child. - Thrift Diving

My oldest son loves it! And it’s so nice having a place for him in my reading room where he can sit and do his school work!

Repurposed changing table: Upcycle a painted changing table into a desk for your older child. - Thrift Diving

Repurposed changing table: Upcycle a painted changing table into a desk for your older child, for a place to study. - Thrift Diving


So you may be wondering how much this repurposed changing table me. Well, considering that I didn’t actually need to go buy anything to do it–IT COST ME NOTHING! But if you want to get technical, the changing table was $12, the paint was probably about $5 (if not less). The Gorilla Glue Epoxy was free (got it at the Haven conference). The Pencil People did require me to buy some googley eyes for them, and some twine, but they weren’t part of the desk, so they don’t count :). So…. you do the math: CHEAP! But cute!


This project took me 4 evenings. It could have taken less time, but I was puttering around with all the nitty-gritty details, trying to see if “this” would work or “that” would work. It was time well spent, however!


I would say this is an intermediate project, only because you’ve got to use power tools to cut the legs and some other pieces of wood, in order to make them fit.

So what do you think??!!


Repurposed changing table: Get a step-by-step tutorial for how to repurpose a changing table. - Thrift Diving


If you like this project, you may like some of my other desk/table projects! 🙂

A 1980’s Desk Makeover From the Thrift Store

Eat-in Kitchen Table Makeover

How to Refresh Your Desk in 3 Hours or Less


So what do you think of this repurposed changing table? If you’ve got some additional ideas for repurposing a changing table, please leave a comment and let me know!


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  1. Just wanted to say hello! Just came across your site as we bought a house and it has a built in changing table that looks like it could also become a desk and needed some inspiration. I actually just bought myself a set of Ryobi tools on sale at Home Depot! Pretty excited to have power tools for my DIY projects now (much to the dismay of my concerned husband!)

    Really enjoying your blog and sense of humor!

  2. Jeanette Dick says:

    I love the useful repurposing…but I do have a question about cutting the legs off. What measurement scale did you go with to let you know how much to take off? It looks as if your son has just enough room to slide in, but as he gets older, or if an adult sits at the desk, is there enough room to sit with legs under the desk drawer? Thanks for the inspiration. Just curious about thigh space! Thanks!

    1. Hey, Jeanette!

      Sorry for the late response! I’ve been traveling and not being good about answering in a timely fashion! LOL. To answer your question, I think I just guesstimated. I have sat at the desk and can sit comfortably. I think it depends on the height of the chair you’ll use, and then add in several inches over the height of what the chair would be with your legs, too! Hope that helps! šŸ™‚

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