What Is An Armoire? Your Ultimate Guide To Armoires

In this article, we will look at what is an armoire and other related things that will come in handy when revamping an armoire. 

Armoire (pronounced aarm·waar) is a French word that means a tall, heavy cabinet with two doors designed to store war equipment.

Armoires are omnipresent today. However, if you still can’t recollect where you saw them- you are likely to have spotted armoires at an antique store. 

What Is An Armoire Used For?

People traditionally used the armoire to store weapons, armor, and other war gear in old times. Because of this, they are tough, heavy, and large. However, with time and slight modifications, they are now synonymous with clothing storage in homes, hotels, etc.

This transition from storing arms to storing clothes began in the seventeenth century when noblemen stored their ornate clothes in armoires. Until then, people usually stored clothes in chests. Today, what was previously only available to royalty can be used by anyone. 

What Is An Armoire

What Does an Armoire Look Like on the Inside?

If you’re wondering what an armoire looks like on the inside, it usually has shelves, hanging space, and sometimes even drawers. 

Armoires are a great option if you want to fill your room with decorative, antique pieces that offer maximum storage. 

What Is the Difference Between an Armoire and a Wardrobe?

There is a great deal of confusion between the two terms. Well, let us look at what are the main differences between an armoire and a wardrobe. 


An armoire is a multifunctional wardrobe that can cater to multiple purposes, whereas a wardrobe is primarily meant for storing clothes. Traditionally, an armoire was meant to be storage specifically for arms. 

Size and ornamentation

Armoires are bigger and more ornate relative to a wardrobe.


Armoires are moveable, whereas a wardrobe may or may not be so. 


An armoire essentially has two doors and a hanging bar, while a wardrobe can have multiple doors. 

What Kind of Furniture Is an Armoire?

An armoire can serve as a statement piece in your home. It comes in many options in terms of finish, patterns, colors, and storage. If you see your space lacks a certain character, adding statement pieces can certainly elevate the look and feel of the space. On that note, let us also look at how you can style armoires in your spaces. 

What Is An Armoire

How To Style Armoires in Interiors?

Let us walk through some tips you can keep in mind when thinking of the perfect place for an armoire in your household.


Since armoires come in very large sizes, they would look good with large beds. So the rule of thumb is you should check whether the dimensions of both the armoire and bed complement each other.

Also, do not go for an oversized armoire if your room is rather cramped up already since it would add to the visual clutter despite its ornate appearance. Finally, do not forget to walk into a store with tentative measurements to avoid buying the wrong size. 

Decorate the top of armoires

You may certainly leave the tops empty. But, some of us like to keep something above the top too. You can add a pop of color to create a fun element. Your decoration can comprise almost anything that creates contrast or harmony with the armoire, such as artificial flowers, decorative items, or a cute old trunk. 

Texture and finish 

Depending on the finish of other furniture items in your space, you can decide on the texture and finish of the armoire. Because they have an association centuries-old, some people chose to keep armoires with a worn-off, antique finish. Many contemporary and quirky colors and patterns are also available now.

You may opt for one which matches the existing color scheme of your space best. Lastly, check with an interior decorator to get the best match for your surroundings. 

What Is An Armoire

Armoire Makeover

Do you have an armoire lying at your place but secretly admit that you have not been able to reap its maximum use and benefits? Well, let us look at the multiple options you may consider to repurpose an existing armoire. You may get some good ideas. 


How about transforming your armoire into a bookshelf. You can retain some of the drawers and re-do the internal layout into measurements appropriate for books. So there you go, your books just got a new abode. 


Repurpose your ornate armoire into a house for all things you have fondly collected over the years. The ornate ornamentation on the armoire’s facade complements the idea of storing antiques, collectibles, and other special things on the inside well. 

Shoe rack

Arrange the existing racks on the inside at equal distances such that they can accommodate your shoes. You can choose to paint the planks on the inside with chalk paint or if you feel the need to call for a carpenter, go ahead. 

What Is An Armoire

Open Bar

Go as creative as you can. For example, repurpose your armoire into your living room bar. All you need is the necessary ingredients and space in your living room. 


Wait, what is an armoire dresser? Well, you can make and use one yourself to have the answer. 

Armoire Cabinet

What is an armoire cabinet? It is a tall, large chest with two doors built for storing clothes, or even television, crockery, and so much more. 

How to Paint an Armoire

Let us look at the method to follow when painting an Armoire. Sometimes, a new coat of paint can work wonders. However, if you feel your armoire requires the same makeover, continue reading ahead. 

  1. Keep your armoire over old newspapers, rag cloth, or anything of the sort to save your floor from any damage.
  2. Remove the hardware that is handles and other similar things with a screwdriver. If possible and convenient, remove the doors and place them atop another surface covered in rag cloth.
  3. Mix cleaning liquid with lukewarm water in a tub or bucket. Now, clean the entirety of the armoire with this solution. You can use a rag for this purpose. Clean it well, and then let it dry.
  4. It is time to begin sanding now. With medium grit sandpaper, go over the entire surface once. Now repeat the same with a fine-grit sandpaper.
  5. You can now do a primer coat if the paint you have chosen requires or begin with a coat of paint directly. Let the paint dry well, and then go for a second coat. Let the second coat dry well too. 
  6. Now that the paint is fully dried, use a sealer to ensure the paint stays intact for a good while. 
  7. Reassemble all the parts of the armoire and wrap up all the arrangements. 

What Is An Armoire

I know many of you would want to know which paint is best for an armoire. From my personal experience, I would recommend latex paint for this purpose. Latex paints are less intense and water-soluble. However, you can consult with your carpenter for what they find best for your furniture. 

So, What is an armoire?

Armoires are certainly versatile beauties. If you enjoyed reading what we have written, do let us know in the comments below. Also, share the same with your friends and family.