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A Good Knob Story

I never grow weary of the two-minute makeover.  I don’t always want to spray paint or stencil something.  Some things are sentimental.  Some things were expensive gifts.  Some things look pretty good, as-is.  But some things have pulls that look like stripper tassels.  And some of these things have been waiting 10 years for a mini-makeover until, one day, when a knob actually falls off, and I decide to make a quick change.

My grandma bought me this little armoire, which houses my jewellery, scarves, spare pairs of glasses, etc.  I absolutely love it because the doors swing open and inside it has a million different compartments and mini drawers for storage.  We recently hit Lee Valley to find replacements for the stripper-tassel pulls, so I could love it more.  After a miss (luckily, LV has a great return policy), I found a style that works (here’s the link). They actually only had four of the size I wanted, so I opted for a size bigger for the bottom two drawers.  A happy accident, because I think it works.

Our “tools”: pocket knife and itty bitty screw driver.

We had to make a teeny slit in the felt lining to access the screws (hence the pocket knife, but an exact-o knife would do the trick), but otherwise it was an easy switch.

Here’s the before.  Gosh, it looks sad.

An old photo, before I tweaked the paintings

A little side-by-side comparison:

And the after. 

I like how the knobs better suit the existing hinges . . .

. . . plus, the new squarish knobs look good with the headboard and also the square finials on the curtain rods, without being too matchy-matchy.

I love a good knob story (gosh, I hope that doesn’t mean something dirty).  I am actually a compulsive knob changer: we changed every interior doorknob from brass to silver (except one in the basement, but it’s on the chopping block), plus the exterior door, kitchen cupboards, half bath vanity and my filing cabinet all got a knob makeover.  I would have loved to have DIY’d some kind of makeover but, like so much in this house, most knobs didn’t work.  Sigh.  Yep, I spend a lot of time with the Lee Valley hardware catalog.



  1. Ashley
    April 23, 2012 / 2:15 pm

    I love Lee Valley! What a cute little armoire.

    • Tanya from Dans le Townhouse
      April 23, 2012 / 2:49 pm

      Almost overwhelming, though, right? Too many knob options!

  2. Martina
    April 23, 2012 / 2:59 pm

    The new knobs completely updates the whole look 🙂 Lee Valley is wonderful, but you're right about it being overwhelming–too many great choices!

    • Tanya from Dans le Townhouse
      April 23, 2012 / 3:40 pm

      Thanks! I'm glad I'm not the only one a little overwhelmed, but it is really nice to walk into a store (or open up the catalog) knowing something will definitely work. The Hubs and I do too much "questing" – searching and searching for the "right" whatever.

  3. Amelia @ House Pretty
    April 23, 2012 / 3:03 pm

    It's amazing what a difference new knobs can make – they completely change the look of the piece. Nice job! And don't you love it when there's no staining/painting involved?

    • Tanya from Dans le Townhouse
      April 23, 2012 / 3:39 pm

      Thanks! And YES! Staining or painting this, with the glued on felt lining and 1,000,000 compartments would have driven me crazy ;P

  4. Sheila @SZInteriors
    April 23, 2012 / 3:41 pm

    It's amazing what a difference the new knobs make… No comparison!

  5. Kat
    April 23, 2012 / 4:45 pm

    This is a great update and I much prefer the look of your new knobs. LV is a great store. I'm absolutely smitten with the idea of tons of interior compartments (I was secretly hoping we'd get a better look!). Do you know where your grandma bought you this armoire?

    • Tanya from Dans le Townhouse
      April 23, 2012 / 11:02 pm

      If you want to see the interior, do I have something for you: a video demonstrating the fancy features (mine's not as tidy – or FULL – as the demo):'m glad you asked, I didn't think folks would want a peak! Mine was bought at QVC. I wish I'd picked white, but I was so into cherry stain 10 years ago . . . It wasn't cheap (thank you grandma) but it actually keeps jewellery from tarnishing, plus it keeps chains from tangling and earrings from getting lost. A good investment piece!

    • Kat
      April 25, 2012 / 11:36 am

      Thank you! I watched the video in rapt fascination. I'm a little obsessed with anything storage-related. I love the slide-out earring stands. It's a little smaller than I expected but a great piece nonetheless. For now I'm using a low-key jewellery storage – fish tackle trays from a home hardware store, but obviously it's not tarnish-free. Anyways, I've pinned this and maybe once we own a home I'll invest!

    • Tanya from Dans le Townhouse
      April 25, 2012 / 2:18 pm

      Those QVC videos can be pretty awesome. Glad you like it (even if it's smaller than you thought). With all the compartments, it really is smart storage, although I love your fish tackle trays! I use something from the hardware store for many of my craft supplies (I think it's meant for fishing or maybe screws and stuff?). If you get a white one, I'll be jealous. I wanted white but at the time I had that cheery stain going on in my room and never thought I'd tire of it. Now it's the only cherry remnant, but it is a little blast from past so I guess it's okay. But white would have been the better choice . . .

  6. kelly@refresheddesigns.
    April 23, 2012 / 6:15 pm

    Gotta love a 2-minute makeover! Nice job.

  7. Jeanette @ This Dusty House
    April 23, 2012 / 7:45 pm

    Ooh, I love the concept of this little armoire! I kind of want one now, partially because I can almost envision it actually fitting in our bedroom. Love the new knobs!

  8. Lets just build a house!
    April 23, 2012 / 9:19 pm

    LOL compulsive knob-changer sounds like next weeks episode of something on TLC…It was a quick change but made a heck of a difference.

    • Tanya from Dans le Townhouse
      April 23, 2012 / 11:06 pm

      Ha ha! It should be a series. Maybe I should contact TLC . . .

  9. Sarah @ { rad: renovations are dirty }
    April 23, 2012 / 9:56 pm

    I love Lee Valley, too! t can be overwhelming with all of the cool stuff to look at. 🙂 Anyway, I love your little update! Quick and easy but it changes the look of your armoire so much.

    • Tanya from Dans le Townhouse
      April 23, 2012 / 11:06 pm


  10. Dana@Mid2Mod
    April 24, 2012 / 2:30 am

    Love the new pulls. I agree that the larger size on the bottom two drawers works well.

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