Locker Hack – Bring New Life to a Vintage School Locker as a Funky Sideboard


locker made into sideboard furniture dresser upcycle reuse diy

I have several furniture projects that in my blog pipeline 🙂 After finding a while back and getting inspired by some of her projects.  I’m tackling all sorts of my own DIY furniture projects!  This straightforward locker transformation is one of my fav’s!  Ward and I found this gem at a antique store’s going out of business sale. We got it for $120. I then spent another $310 on lumber (I bought Fir which is WAY more than say … Pine or Poplar which you could get those for about $80 total and make this whole project for about $200).

locker made into sideboard furniture dresser upcycle reuse diy before

locker made into sideboard furniture dresser upcycle reuse diy




Step 1: Get the locker home! (ok maybe not a crafty step 1, but it helps to have an idea) these things are heavy and awkward. I used and got our picked up and delivered the next day.

Step 2: Remove any of the lockers that you need to remove. We had to remove 4 lockers as the whole set was just too wide for our space. we just found the screws on the inside and unscrewed them, wasn’t hard at all.

Step 3: Sand the (6) 4×4 pieces as your going to put the legs on first. Since it will get way heavier after you have the new top on.

Step 4: Once sanded and smooth, have a helper help you gently lay down the lockers on there “back”  then evenly space the legs with 4 being in each corner (I went in 2″ on each corner so the legs weren’t right at the edge” and 2 being centered between the corner ones. Screw through the metal on the inside of the locker with the 1.5″ screws and into the 4×4’s. I did 4 screws per leg.  You may need to use a 1/16″ drill bit to predrill a hole if its too hard to screw through the metal.

Step 5: Once legs are installed, simply put the floor protectors on the bottoms, and have your helper help you lift the lockers back upright. Now your ready for the top!

Step 6: Assuming your 2×6 are cut to length (if not, just cut to length with a Chop Saw), just sand them until smooth and round the edges a bit with the sander, make it all nice and smooth.

Step 7: Place the 2×6 all on top of the locker until you get all the edges matching up. Then add wood glue in between them and clamp then together in 3 spaces (like the pictures). Let this dry for at least an hour.

Step 8: Now that the fir is glued together place the full  fir unit exactly where you want it on top of the locker. so move it around until you get 1″ in each side and the spacing in the front that you want.

Step 9: start screwing in the underside of the top of the locker to the buottom of your fir top. I put about 6 screws in each “locker” area, evenly spaced.

Step 10: Your done building now onto finishing 😉 take your automotive polish and rub it all over your locker and buff it out per instructions. This totally polishes and projects your vintage find.

Step 11: paint first coat of polyurethane on  the sideboard top and legs. lightly sand inbetween coats and do 3-4 coats.

Optional:  Add the locker numbers you scored off ebay, or if yours already has them, then ignore this step.

Enjoy your fab new sideboard. It has an AMAZING amount of storage, we are even planning on locking up our liquor in there as the kids get older LOL 😉

locker made into sideboard furniture dresser upcycle reuse diy

locker made into sideboard furniture dresser upcycle reuse diy

Let me know what questions you have!

Happy Crafting


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Questions? Comments? I'd love to hear!