DIY- Refinishing a Dresser - Pretty Real

DIY- Refinishing a Dresser

7:12 PM

Recently I took on the task of refinishing a dresser for my impending bundle of joy. I was really excited to decorate a nursery and immediately started looking at ideas online. I quickly realized how expensive nursery furniture is. Since I really wanted something with character that didn’t cost me an arm and a leg, I decided to look at second hand and consignment stores for a nice dresser that I could re-paint if necessary. I found this beauty at a thrift store for $60.

From my online research, I knew I should look for something without a lot of shine, so that I wouldn’t have to strip it. It’s best to find one already painted that you can simply paint over or to find a wooden dresser that isn’t highly laminated so that you don’t have to bother with paint strippers, etc. This one was perfect. I was also looking for something with great shape (although I didn’t even notice the adorable heart at the bottom until I got it home!).

Although I didn’t have to strip it, I did have to sand it. I tried to sand it by hand for a nano-second before I realized there was no way I’d ever finish it by hand. Luckily my father in law had an electric sander that I borrowed. As you can see, I sanded it down quite a bit, but I really could have sanded it even more to avoid having to do so many coats of primer and paint.

For primer I used a white stain blocker primer that I already had on hand. Even so, I needed to do about 3 coats of the primer, and then 2 coats of ultra white Valspar paint. Make sure to get the gloss finish so that it’s easy to clean. I considered buying vintage knobs and even doing some decoupage on the dresser, but since I was really trying to keep this DIY project low budget, I decided to just paint the knobs instead. I was able to use a sample of paint that cost $2.97. For more inspiration check out iffer’s little nest's refinishing a dresser post here. I must say, I’m quite happy with the result! Check back later for more posts on decorating a nursery!

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  1. wow - super cute! love the pink handles :)

  2. gorgeous! we actually have a dresser that looks very similar (lol the before similar) at our house..i may be inspired...then again i don't know anyone with an electric sander, so maybe not.

  3. Kat some of the articles I read said you just need to rough it up, not completely sand it down. It depends on the wood. That one bled through the white paint and even though it wasn't really shiny it still had some shine I had to get rid of so the paint would stick. If your wood is kind of raw then you may not need an electric sander.

  4. It came out SOOOO good! I love it and it looks perfect in your adorably chic nursery... which I hope you'll post about soon as well! My goal is to finish Grace's nursery before she turns 1... well, maybe 2. ;) Poor kids that come second in line!