Mid Century Modern Dresser Makeover

To have a creative mind is fun. I love to work with most any kind of medium and it just so happens that furniture has become my most popular at this point. When I find a piece of furniture it tends to speak to me from the moment we meet. Sometimes that isn’t always the case because it can be shy and won’t “speak” to me for a bit , but with this Mid Century Modern dresser I knew exactly what I wanted to do.

Before of Mid Century Modern Credenza | Prodigal Pieces | www.prodigalpieces.com

This long beautiful piece of furniture had not been cared for and had a good amount of damage and wear to the top.

Top of Mid Century Modern Dresser with Damage | Prodigal Pieces | www.prodigalpieces.com

It had some sort of star-shaped candle that had melted/burned into the top as well as hot pink marker and some other goodies.

Damaged Dresser Top View | Prodigal Pieces | www.prodigalpieces.com

*post contains affiliate links so you can find the products I love to use too! (see full disclosure)

The drawer fronts had holes made in them by an insect or someone having fun with a tack, but they were sound enough. However, when I pulled out a couple of the drawers they fell apart at my feet. Nothing a little wood glue, wood filler, and clamps couldn’t solve though.

After I got all the pieces glued, everything filled and repaired with the wood filler, I got out my favorite sander and went crazy on that thing. This Mid Century Modern dresser was going to shine again if I had anything to say about it.

As much as I had hoped, sanding does not remove chemical stains, so I used my go-to Kilz stain blocker as my base coat. If you are familiar with my past work, you know I am drawn to the MCM lines and how fun it is to see them come to a modern state. I’ve done oodles of chests, dressers, tables, and credenzas. Take a peek at my projects to see.


Since the damage to the top deemed it paint-worthy, I used a dark gray for the cabinet. The other two colors would come into play on the drawer fronts. I got out my FrogTape and got jiggy with it. hee hee hee.

Frog Tape on Mid Century Modern Dresser Drawers | Prodigal Pieces | www.prodigalpieces.com

The other drawers were refinished using Provincial Stain by Rustoleum – the same stain I used on my fireplace makeover. You know I had to keep wood wherever I could. tsk.

Last, but not least, were the drawer pulls. These babies were solid brass, so no paint for them. Instead, I whip out my handy dandy Bar Keeper’s Friend to get them a cleaning like none other.

TIP: To find out if something is brass, use a magnet. If magnetic, not brass, if it doesn’t stick, you have winner! (psst…I carry a magnet with me at all times because it works on silver too) Every good junker or picker needs to be ready!!

Bar Keepers Friend to Polish Tarnished Brass | Prodigal Pieces | www.prodigalpieces.com

I love this stuff. So easy to use and instant results in a few minutes and it’s so affordable!

Polished Brass Drawer Pull with Bar Keepers Friend by Prodigal Pieces | www.prodigalpieces.com

Once all my paint cured, I added a poly topcoat to seal it all in.

Ready for the reveal? Let me introduce you to this once forlorn gal, gone modern chic.

Mid Century Modern Dresser with Modern Chic Makeover by Prodigal Pieces | www.prodigalpieces.com

Modern Chic Makeover for a Mid Century Modern Dresser by Prodigal Pieces | www.prodigalpieces.com

I am so pleased with the results.

Geometric Design for Mid Century Modern Dresser Credenza | Prodigal Pieces | www.prodigalpieces.com

Vintage Mid Century Modern Dresser with Modern Chic Look by Prodigal Pieces | www.prodigalpieces.com

I even had fun bringing out a few of pieces of my camera collection. Do you collect any?

Vintage Camera Collection by Prodigal Pieces | www.prodigalpieces.com

This Mid Century Modern dresser was a fun project to revive. If you love it and would like to have it as your own, you can find it available in my shop. (SOLD)

Shop Prodigal Pieces | prodigalpieces.com

Do pin and share to inspire others to give dated pieces a new look with a little bit of TLC.

Modern Chic Makeover of a Mid Century Modern Dresser Credenza by Prodigal Pieces | www.prodigalpieces.com

Subscribe to Prodigal Pieces DIY Channel on YouTube | prodigalpieces.com

Next up, I will be getting my junk on when I show you what I do with these two things…do you know what they are? Head HERE TO SEE.

Repurposed Thrifted Tin Plates | Prodigal Pieces | www.prodigalpieces.com

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More Mid Century Modern Dresser makeovers:

Mid Century Credenza Found Curbside Becomes Entertainment Console by Prodigal Pieces | www.prodigalpieces.comHow to Achieve a Factory Finish with a Paint Sprayer by Prodigal Pieces | www.prodigalpieces.com

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  • Debrashoppeno5

    The dresser looks great. I just tried Dixie Belle Products on 2 small projects and it was very impressive. I can’t wait to see what else you use it on.

    October 4, 2016 at 6:20 am Reply
    • Larissa

      Awesome to hear, Debra! I love that it’s made in the USA too. 🙂

      October 4, 2016 at 6:58 am Reply
  • Jamie K

    Beautiful !!!

    October 4, 2016 at 6:54 am Reply
    • Larissa

      Thank you for making me smile, Jamie! 😀

      October 4, 2016 at 6:58 am Reply
  • Jacki ~ My Trash To Treasure Life

    I love that we’re so on the same page finding great junk. It’s an exercise in training your eye to see past the flaws and abuse, and seeing what needs to be done. This one looks great!

    October 4, 2016 at 8:55 am Reply
  • Nancy F

    Beautiful, Thank you

    October 4, 2016 at 9:37 am Reply
  • Teri Ronk

    Just LOVE the final piece….STUNNNING!!!!

    October 4, 2016 at 10:00 am Reply
    • Larissa

      How awesome to hear! Thank you, Teri. I absolutely love the paint.

      October 4, 2016 at 12:20 pm Reply
  • Suzanne

    That is STUNNING!!! Thank you so much for the kind words 🙂 So happy to hear how much you enjoyed using Dixie Belle Paint!

    October 4, 2016 at 10:23 am Reply
    • Larissa

      I am happy to share. Thank you, Suzanne!

      October 4, 2016 at 12:21 pm Reply
  • Patty

    OMG, she is beautiful. You did an outstanding job, you really do such beautiful work, they become a work of art.

    October 4, 2016 at 11:18 am Reply
    • Larissa

      Wahoo!! Awesome to hear, Patty. I had fun!!

      October 4, 2016 at 12:21 pm Reply
  • Mary-the boondocks blog

    Oh la la! Larissa this is ao 60’s cool! It looks like it would have fit right in with those mad men! I must admit at first I didn’t know what you were gong to do with those colors but now…I love the way you have painted it. It is as far from a staid MCM as you can get. !

    October 4, 2016 at 12:05 pm Reply
    • Larissa

      Love your comment, Mary! You are the best and love that you see what I was after. Thank you!!

      October 4, 2016 at 12:22 pm Reply
  • Karen Ploransky

    Great Job Larissa! I’m not a huge fan of mid century modern (probably because that’s what lived with when I was little lol) but I have to say, your projects are giving me a new appreciation of the style! THANK YOU so much for the opportunity to win the steamer. I cannot wait to get it. I may even stop cleaning all together so I can “REALLY” clean everything when it gets here (ok, kidding). THANKS AGAIN!

    October 4, 2016 at 12:53 pm Reply
    • Larissa

      You are hilarious, Karen! Thank you and congrats. 😀

      October 4, 2016 at 7:20 pm Reply
  • Karen

    Amazing!! You did a wonderful job, love it!!

    October 4, 2016 at 7:20 pm Reply
    • Larissa

      aww…thanks so much, Karen! It was fun to see it come to life.

      October 4, 2016 at 7:21 pm Reply
  • Jeanette

    Your dresser is fab just like always.* The pic of the metal objects are candle holders:) Blessings, Jen

    October 4, 2016 at 8:21 pm Reply
    • Larissa

      Thanks,Jeanette! Yes, I think so too, but their size is so small that only a votive or tea light would fit. I share what I did with them today!

      October 6, 2016 at 9:59 am Reply
  • Marie from The Interior Frugalista

    Oh my gosh Larissa, what a beautiful job on this MCM dresser! I’m not a fan of peach or apricot but girl, it’s looking mighty fine on this piece. I just tried Dixie Belle paint for the first time this afternoon and I couldn’t agree more with your review. Love it! Pinning and sharing your fabulous makeover 🙂

    October 4, 2016 at 8:23 pm Reply
    • Larissa

      It does grow on you. I’m actually debating on painting some upholstery I have with it. Time will tell! Thanks so much for the love, Marie.

      October 6, 2016 at 9:59 am Reply
  • Cecilia

    What a great transformation! It turned out so pretty! I love seeing what you do with sad pieces of furniture to make them glad again.

    October 4, 2016 at 10:13 pm Reply
    • Larissa

      Thank you for the sweet words, Cecilia. They make my day!

      October 6, 2016 at 9:58 am Reply
  • Nancy W.

    The top of the dresser looks like such a SMOOTH finish…..how did you achieve that?

    November 3, 2016 at 11:14 pm Reply
    • Larissa

      Thank you, Nancy. 😀 First, I use my sander and wood filler, and then primed and painted with my micro foam roller (it’s my favorite way to paint these long pieces).

      November 5, 2016 at 5:28 am Reply
  • Dell

    I love the mix of paint and wood! This warm weather makes me want to go out and paint something!

    February 18, 2017 at 1:55 pm Reply
    • Larissa

      I hear that! It is such a wonderful time of year when I can get out and work in the fresh air.

      February 19, 2017 at 5:57 am Reply

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