Before and After: Refurbished Dresser

antique dresserpainted dresser 2painted drawersrefurbished dresserdresser detailspainted dresserWhile I was living on the Upper East Side, I found this dresser in an antique thrift store and bought it for a steal of ONLY $75! The details of the wood and the style of the dresser is what appealed to me, and of course the compartments were useful for clothes, jewelry, etc.  I kept it for a good couple of years without having to make any changes to it, however when I moved to Brooklyn it looked out of place in our modern bedroom.  I refused to give it away, so instead I decided that I would paint it white so that it would blend better with the color scheme of our room!

Materials Needed: Elmer’s wood glue, wood filler, old sheets (or you can use drop cloth), sanding wedge (8—120 grit), bonding primer (or Zinsser cover stain), paint, and water-based polyurethane (or furniture wax)


1. Correct the wood – since the dresser was chipping and cracked in several areas I used the wood filler to smooth and fill out the edges

2. Sanding: Separate the drawers and remove all of the knobs from each drawer. I actually sanded everything by hand which took me practically about 3 – 4 hours (more or less – I took breaks when my hand would get tired)…BUT I suggest using an orbital sander if you have a big piece of furniture. I used 80-120 grit sand and made sure to remove the sheen.

NOTE: Before you start to paint or prime remember to remove all of the dust and residue from the dresser. You can simply brush it off with a dry cloth – I also used a vacuum cleaner.

3. Primer: Paint a thin layer of primer; let dry for about 10 minutes and add another coat. Let this dry. I actually skipped this step because the guy from home depot said that the paint already included a primer.

4. Paint: Use a roller for the big areas (main frame of the dresser) and a good quality brush for the more detailed areas like the drawers. I used an especially small/fine brush to paint the middle small drawer. Make sure to let it dry overnight and paint another coat.

5. Seal the paint: Once the paint is dry apply the furniture wax or lacquer to protect the paint from scratches and to avoid any future chipping.

*This was my actually very first DIY project so I was extremely excited and happy with the way it turned out :)


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  • Avatar
    Reply Alexa B February 25, 2014 at 12:17 pm

    Looks gorgeous! Great job cassie!

    • Cassie
      Reply Cassie February 25, 2014 at 12:34 pm

      thanks Alexa! Sanding it wasn’t fun but in the end was so worth it!

  • Avatar
    Reply KERRI February 25, 2014 at 12:24 pm


    • Cassie
      Reply Cassie February 25, 2014 at 12:32 pm

      Thanks Kerri! A little paint job goes a long way! :)

  • Avatar
    Reply Amy February 25, 2014 at 1:12 pm

    Simply gorgeous cassie :) Very inspiring <3

    • Cassie
      Reply Cassie February 26, 2014 at 10:16 am

      thanks Amy!!

  • Avatar
    Reply maria at inredningsvis February 26, 2014 at 7:32 am

    WOWWW I LOVE BEFORE AFTERS :) and this one is lovely

    Check out my new post….a lovely new shoe collection :)

    Have a fab day dear :)

    LOVE Maria at inredningsvis – inredning it’s, Swedish for decor :)

    • Cassie
      Reply Cassie February 26, 2014 at 10:15 am

      thanks Maria! I love interior decorating and being inspired by different pieces such as this dresser. I just checked out your webpage & i love all of your decorating tips and displaying shoes to brighten any room…although i don’t think my boyfriend would be into it ; )

  • Avatar
    Reply kenia Molina February 26, 2014 at 10:03 am

    This looks great!! awesome job!!

    • Cassie
      Reply Cassie February 26, 2014 at 10:11 am

      thanks Kenia!!

  • Avatar
    Reply Jill February 26, 2014 at 12:16 pm

    This was your first diy project? that’s incredible – you did a great job!

    x. jill
    beck daily

  • Avatar
    Reply Molly {Dreams in HD} March 11, 2014 at 9:47 am

    this looks absolutely amazing!
    you are so, so talented.

    • Cassie
      Reply Cassie March 11, 2014 at 1:32 pm

      Thank you so much Molly! I can’t wait to share more projects like this one

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