How to stripe furniture with electric tape

So I got this wonderful vintage sideboard off Craigslist, and decided it was a little too “solid wood”-looking for my small dining area.  It just seemed to take too much visual weight, and the walnut clashed a little with my espresso dining table.

How to make it look more whimsical and less traditional? Easy – stripe it with 1.5″ white vinyl electric tape (I got some for $3/roll at my favorite hardware store in DC: District Hardware Bike Shop).  No paint, no mess, and best of all it comes right off if you get sick of it without damaging the wood. Directions and more pictures after the jump.

Quite possibly the easiest DIY ever.


  • 2 rolls of 1.5″ white electric tape (or any other color you like)
  • 2 decorative knobs — I chose the blue jewelers knobs from Anthropologie (optional)
  • Scissors
  • Ruler, level, and pencil (optional)

Project cost: $22

Time: 1 hour


  1. Clean the surface of the piece with a gentle cleaner that won’t leave build-up or residue, which could prevent proper tape-stickage. I used a soft cloth with a tiny bit of water.
  2. Start taping stripes! This was the easiest thing ever because my sideboard had grooves on the front that were exactly 1.5″ wide. If your piece doesn’t have grooves/edges, you can draw your own guide using a level, ruler and pencil.  Draw straight lines at equal or unequal distances, using them as a guide for the tape.
  3. Cut the tape at the bottom of your stripe and tuck it under the edge of the piece, or cut it flush with the edge. I did the former because it’s easier.
  4. Install knobs, if using.
  5. Step back and admire your handiwork. Blog post optional but encouraged.
Sideboard (behind table and chair) before the striping – sorry I don’t have a better “before” picture
Ta-da! Less than an hour later, fully striped.

The end result was even better than I imagined — the stripes gave the piece a regency-style that coordinated well with my crazy zebra wallpaper (from Anthropologie).  Dramatic effect, minimal cost and effort.  What’s not to love?


One Comment Add yours

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