Modern Card Catalog Table with Stacy Risenmay


Guest blogger Stacy Risenmay of Not JUST A Housewife is back with a post on a beautiful card catalog table that was passed down from her dad.

Over the years I have refinished things that have held great personal value like my dad’s desk that is now my desk and the vanity that use to be in my sisters’ room growing up. I have also built many pieces that I hope will be around for a long time and that my kids will look back on and have memories attached to them.

I have partnered with Minwax again this year and I love their new campaign called “Made with Love, Finished with Minwax”. Today I am sharing a project that has personal meaning for different reasons.

Card Catalogue Table

I have finally convinced my boys that it would be a good idea to have two bedrooms instead of the one boy room we have going on right now. It has taken years to get them on board. I love that they like sharing a room. I love that they tell stories and jokes and giggle before falling asleep each night.  Part of me wants them to share a room forever and the other part (the part that trips over the ever growing piles) knows that as they get bigger, it just won’t work. We have been dreaming up designs and colors schemes and while nothing is set in stone yet, I know the feel I want for the bedroom my oldest will be in. He plays guitar and piano so it will be a hang out type music-y room. Loungey and casual.  Depending on the layout there will either be a couple of chairs  or a love seat. Either way, there will need to be a side table and we created the perfect one. Yep, we. My oldest and I got our DIY on together for this one 🙂

Card Catalogue Table with Guitar

Not only was it fun to build this together, but the card catalog came to us thanks to my mom. When my dad got sick with cancer my mom went to work in a local bank. She has now been there over 20 years and will be retiring soon. That bank has been such a big part of her life and ours. It will be so weird to go there and not take the kids in the back to get extra suckers. We have had most of our family parties in the basement. When my mom gave me some of the metal card catalog drawers from the storage room that they were going to get rid of, I knew I had to do something special with them.

Card Catalogue Detail

The biggest problem with keeping the boys’ room clean (aside from clothes!) is the over abundance of tiny, random things that have no real home. Annoying cheap toys from birthday parties, earphones, rocks, sticks, etc. I created a “treasure drawer” for the youngest ones who seam to have the most but soon realized that even my oldest has small things that needed a place.

Card Catalogue Table for Storage

While I have no firm date on when the room switcharoo will happen, at least we have a table ready to go when it does. I think it is safe to say he likes it!

Son Play Guitar by Finished Project

It was a fairly easy project. We cut out wood to create the box that would go around the drawers. I lightly sanded them.

Sanding image

While I was sanding the wood, my oldest sanded the metal drawers. Nothing major. Just enough so the paint would adhere better. He used a 150 grit but 220 works as well.

Sanding card catalogue table

A little glue and some nails will get it assembled!

Glueing pieces together

Use a carpenter’s square to make sure the box is perfectly square before attaching a back.

wooden box with carpenter square

Putty the nail holes and any other imperfections with a putty that is sandable and stainable. When it has dried, sand it smooth.

Using putty in nail holes

When staining soft wood like pine, always use a wood conditioner like Minwax® Pre-Stain Wood Conditioner. It helps the wood accept the stain more evenly. If you are planning on using an oil based stain, use an oil based conditioner. There is a water based conditioner for water based stains as well.

Minwax Pre-Stain

We also used Minwax® Wood Finish™ in Dark Walnut.

Staining with foam brush

Wiping excess stain

After the stain dried we sealed it. One of the perks of using plywood for this project was the fun striping along the edges.

Table stripes after staining


Son with finished card catalogue table

For more fun projects visit Sarah from Thrifty Decor Chick and watch this cute video. I may have teared up a bit 🙂 

 Stacy Risenmay is a DIY enthusiast. In her blog, Not Just a Housewife, she shares her adventures of fixing up her 1938 cottage. She believes that whether it’s big or small, everyone should love their space. Learn more about Stacy and visit: You can also follow Stacy on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram