Do you find stress relief in work? I’m one of those the will clean my house lickety-split when I am one hot mama. hahaha… That’s kinda how I feel about furniture and my creative projects too. There are times when I am downright frazzled and wore to the bone, then when I go get creative my woes are gone. I talk to God during that time and it feels so good. We’ve had some major setbacks in the last few weeks and I decided to take it out on this piece today. Let me show you how I turned it into an updated dresser.
You might be wondering what’s wrong, well we’ve found a pest in the wood we are using for our kitchen countertops. No big deal, just treat and move on, but that set us back 3 weeks finding the source, the solution, and waiting on it to arrive. Then our vehicle had issues and when they were supposed to be fixed the dude who repaired it caused more damage. We even had good stress such as having more orders than we could handle…still stress though, right? There are other problems too, but that’s a sampling.
I liken it to being a pumped race horse sitting at the gate and I am ready to fly through the track! I can’t work on our kitchen until our counters are in and it’s killing me. First-world problem, I know. But…living out of boxes for over a year is too much for me. All I want is my house back. God is good and I know without a doubt He will see us through this. I must be patient though I feel like an impatient toddler. Do you ever feel like that?
So, when I found this dresser on Craigslist, I thought it had potential and would help me get my creative juices flowing. It had pretty good wear to the top…
…damaged front skirt, missing pulls, and some issues with the side planks. Even the mirror was horribly mottled and visibility was nil for daily use.
First order of business is to get that top sanded off. I started with our belt sander to get off the chunky protective coating. That made the job easier and revealed a gorgeous maple. Mmm…. However, I didn’t stop there. I decided to use a trick that I often do to create a rustic look. Likewise, I want a sort of rustic sawn effect to this updated dresser. In order to do that, I used my orbital sander to mimic the look. It’s in these times I think and pray.
There are a couple of ways to do this. First, you can use an old sandpaper disc that will actually make markings in the wood. Or, I also offset my sandpaper so that some of the teeth of the pad are sticking out of the holes to scratch the surface. I have found this works the best for the effect I’m after. The idea is you want to swirl the sander in sweeping motions to create a sawn look. (like the saw blade left marks in the wood and time has weathered it)
After the surface is prepped, I chose to use my favorite Early American stain. You can see it in action on these makeovers too. Once the stain has penetrated, I wipe off and let dry. After that, I use a matte poly to get a final topcoat to my updated dresser.
Now that the top is done, it’s time for the cabinet. JC, my wonderful husband, helped me out to create a new skirt for the front. He took a basic board, cut it to length, and then he routed the edge for me. For added appeal, he used our jigsaw to create a simple skirt with feet.
All I had to do was attach it with some wood glue and my nailer and we’re ready to roll. This is where the work pays off and I feel the stress relieving, as well as I pray for the person that will be receiving my work.
Oh, and I because I am changing out the pulls, I cut pieces of dowel to plug the old holes and glued them in. Then, once everything is dry, I cut in and keep my lines clean on the drawer faces.
Next, I’m using a basic paint & primer paint in eggshell for the finish in Pebble Gray by Glidden. Only takes two coats and I’m done. Yay!
Though typically I try to save the original pulls, I decided to replace these. Look at these beauties from Hickory Hardware. They’re making me wish I had chosen these for our kitchen remodel. I chose this knob and these pulls in rose gold.
Finally, with the hardware added, this part of the project is now done. I must say it looks much better as an updated dresser than in the before. Stick around and I’ll show you the mirror in a bit. You’ll love it!
Likewise, don’t the pulls look fantastic against that gray? I’m seriously in love.
Here is a closeup of the top so you can see my sawn effect. It makes for nice texture and adds dimension.
I created the wall art in honor of my mother, and my grandparents from the song, “You are my Sunshine”. My mother would it to me, and likewise my grandfather would sing it to my grandmother. My grandparents have passed, but I miss them so. I now sing this same song to my children:
“You are my sunshine, my only sunshine. You make me happy, when skies are gray. You’ll never know dear how much I love you. Please don’t take my sunshine away.”
As for the mirror, I chose to use it in a different way. I actually love mottled mirrors as they tell a story and give that timeless feel. However, I like to jazz them up a bit too. For this project, I used two coats of Vintage by DecoArt on the frame, a whitewash glaze, and an etched glass kit.
Just peel and stick and away we go!
Now, doesn’t that look lovely? I seriously have an addiction to mirrors and would love to keep this one, but have over a dozen already.
This updated dresser, the wall art sign (as well as a smaller version), the mirror are now available in my shop (SOLD). We do deliver to your door and can ship several furniture items (and anything smaller) for the same price. Just message me for a quote.
Additionally, to inspire others, do pin and share this updated dresser. You never know when that one project will change someones life.