When I saw this piece at an estate sale I just had to have it. It was a little dinged up and the bones of this dresser needed some serious repair but those hand carved wooden pulls spoke to me! It sat in my dinning room for weeks because I was debating on what to do with it, also I just loved it so much I wanted to enjoy the sight. I wasn’t sure I wanted to paint but it definitely needed a good sanding. This is what it used to look like:
My first step was removing the pulls. They were screwed and glued on so after removing the screws I took a hammer and a flat head and very gently pried them up. Next I had to get rid of all the scratches and dings so I sanded this all the way down with my orbital sander. I forgot to take a picture before I started staining the top but you get the idea!
Next I stained the top using Rust-Oleum Stain in Kona. I brushed it on with a paintbrush but didn’t want it to sit too long because I wanted it to match the the wood pulls. I wiped it off after about 3 minutes. The pine must have been thirsty though because it absorbed a lot of the stain so fast. I kept wiping it down until I got some more of the wood grain to show through. I like how it turned out, kind of distressed looking. Make sure when you hammer your stain lid shut you make the biggest mess possible. like splatter it all over your face. Just kidding, I told you without fail I always I find a way to cover myself in paint and/or stain. I was very thankful it missed my eyes, my husband thought it was hysterical…
Once I stained and it was dry I coated with wax. I decided to go with three layers because it’s pine, which means it’s soft wood and has a tendency to scratch easily. My prefered wax is Minwax Finishing Wax. It dries hard like a lacquer finish. I waxed some cheap living room furniture I repainted about 4 years ago with it and they’re still basically brand new! I find it so easy to use too, just wipe it on with a rag or chip brush. Then after 15-20mins buff with a clean cloth. This is a pic after one coat of wax before buffing you can see it looks cloudy, but once it dries it buffs to a light shine.
After the staining and waxing I was able to paint. Yay! I made a custom mix of chalk paint to create a really light gray blue color. I was able to get away with ONE coat of paint on this. It was amazing how well it covered when I sanded all the way down first. Plus, it allowed the wood grain to show through which I loved! I was considering doing a second coat but I wanted it to look a bit antiqued so just kept it the way it was. I coated the entire thing with regular Minwax Finishing Wax then did a coat of dark wax on top for an aged look. With dark wax you just rub it on and use a clean rag to rub off the excess. Just keep rubbing until it blends in nicely. I don’t always follow the rules of furniture painting, some people say you HAVE to use two coats but I just listen to the piece of furniture. Sometimes a piece need three coats sometimes one. Look at that wood grain combined with the dark wax, so pretty:
Next it was time to clean up the wood hardware. I loved the color the way they came, I just wanted to make them shine again. I’m all about using what you have. I didn’t have any hemp oil to restore these but I did have olive oil! I found this an awesome alternative. I just sprayed on a little olive oil cooking spray and used an old tooth brush. Check out the difference below!
After I attached the pulls to the drawers I needed to fix the inside. The bottom drawer was missing its runner, and the other runners were very loose. Some of them were also missing the drawer stops (small wooden squares to keep the drawers from being pushed all the way back). I cut out a new runner from scrap pine I had with a jigsaw. Then I used Liquid Nails and some clamps to install. Then, I used Liquid Nails and wood nails to reinforce all of the runners to make sure they wouldn’t go anywhere. I cut out small pieces of scrap wood to make the drawer stops and also used liquid nails to attach those.
Once the Liquid Nails had cured I brought her in and set her up in my living room. Styled her with a simple white pitcher, fresh cut flowers and my country check curtains. She fit right in but she ended up going to an awesome home in my hometown! I knew this one would go fast, too beautiful to stay put for long!
Before and After:
Thanks for reading!