Estate sales can be great places to pick up pieces of furniture at a reasonable price. We found this dresser and another dresser that was identical to it at a local estate sale, so we properly named the dressers the twins. We had a friendly competition where Sydney designed one and Josh designed the other. This is the story of Josh's design, The Classic Grey Dresser.
Click here if you would like to see Sydney's design, The Rustic Grey Dresser.
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This dresser did not have the intricate carvings or features that some of the other dressers we worked on had, but it was solid wood, which opened the floodgate for possible designs. My original design did not quite turn out as planned, but we were able to make some adjustments that resulted in another beautiful piece.
We used the following supplies on this dresser:
The paint on the dresser was extremely thick, so we could not take just a sander to it. So we turned to a paint stripper that we found to be effective, CitriStrip, to remove the paint before sanding. We used a cheap paintbrush to apply the CitriStrip, and then we let it sit for a while. You will be able to tell when it starts to work because the paint we start bubbling up (the picture on the right shows this). After letting it sit for a while (on this project, we let it sit for a couple of hours), we will use a scraper and scrape off the paint. Sometimes you might need to use a little muscle to get the paint off. As we noted above, you must ensure that all of the CitriStrip is removed, or it could affect your finish later on.
After we finished scraping the paint off the dresser, we sanded the body down. We start with our orbital sander using 80 grit sandpaper. Then, we hand sand with 120 grit sandpaper. This process seems to be extremely effective in putting the dresser in its bare-bones state.
After we sanded the dresser down, we made sure to tape the inside of the body and the inside of the drawers. Taping the drawers will provide clean lines, and it is one of those little details that make the finished product stunning.
Once the body was taped, we were ready to paint the body with mineral paint. We usually do two coats of paint to make sure that everything is sufficiently covered.
Mineral paint generally dries pretty fast, so we were ready to apply a coat of wax after waiting an hour for the paint to dry (it dries quicker than this, but we wanted to make sure that it was fully dry before we started applying wax to it). Remember not to overcoat the dresser with wax because it will create major streaks, especially with a darker paint color. After the wax has been applied, allow it to sit overnight. The next day you should take fine steel wool (we used #000) over the entire body, then buff out the wax with a cloth. (Note: Make sure that you are not too aggressive with the steel wool because you may end up peeling back the paint).
After you have accomplished this, you will want to let the wax cure for around seven days before putting the dresser into any significant use.
Also, until it is fully cured, be careful to touch the wax with your fingers because the oil from your hands may transfer into the wax, giving it a dirty look.
This dresser turned out great!
Josh and Sydney are life adventurers that love to learn and create. We are exact opposites and enjoy gaining new perspective. Our home is where our varying personalities shine, and we use it to gather our friends and family together.