Thursday, January 30, 2014

Yellow Dresser Makeover


So you guys know how much I love to use Craigslist to find new projects {as evidenced here, here, here and here}. I think the key to finding good deals is to just be patient. I usually have a price limit in mind and I absolutely refuse to budge. Being stubborn can sometimes be a good thing.

 

But this Craigslist deal was far and away my best one yet. I had been keeping an eye open for a large dresser that I could fix up and use as both a changing table and dresser for my daughter's nursery. I was able to score this little beauty {actually, the words" little" and "beauty" really didn't apply at the time} for only $5! How could I pass that up? Plus, while it was not the prettiest dresser, I could definitely see the potential for a makeover in all the cool details---like the trim work around the top and the awesome middle door.

 

A diamond in the rough, just like Aladdin.  Excuse me...I've been watching WAY too many Disney movies.
 I had been thinking about painting the dresser yellow when Annie Sloan released her new chalk paint color, English Yellow. I took it as a sign from the paint gods. I had been dreading the prep work involved with using regular paint but didn't like any of the yellows that were already out there for chalk paint. Just as I was resigned to choosing a different color of chalk paint {because ain't nobody got time to sand down a dresser that large}, ASCP debuted the yellow. The paint gods are merciful indeed.



To begin the makeover, I started by removing all the brass hardware and spray painting them oil-rubbed bronze.  I am always amazed by how big an impact this simple step makes.  {Unfortunately, it's such simple step, I just blazed ahead and did it without taking any pictures for ya. Whoops.}


After that, I wiped down the dresser using some Simply Green to remove all the dirt and oil before getting started. I mixed the English Yellow chalk paint with some Old White that I had leftover from my headboard makeover in a ratio of 2:1. I also watered it down a little bit. I find this helps prevent streak marks, if you are going for a more modern, smooth finish {which I was}.

 


Luckily, I had my sisters and mom {and wine} on hand to help with the initial painting. Since chalk paint dries really fast, we were able to paint three coats on the dresser in a day and a half. {Because I water the paint down, I have found that I need at least three coats to give my pieces the coverage that I want.}

My middle sis, Kelly.
My youngest sister, Rachel. What are sisters for, if not free labor?

After the dresser was painted, I wanted to add a little something to the three middle inside drawers. You wouldn't see the drawers when the big door was shut but I liked the idea of a surprise when you opened it.  I decided to transfer an image to the wooden drawers and I found a floral picture on Google that I liked and printed it off. {Make sure your printer uses toner! An inkjet printer won't work.} I had read a few tutorials about how to do this and most recommended using Citra Solv as the transferring agent but some mentioned that ANY orange degreaser would work. Since I couldn't find Citra Solv at the store {and I am an impatient soul} I just bought a generic cleaner and used that. I think I should have been a wee bit more patient this time around.


While I was able to get the image to transfer, it wasn't as easy as I had hoped. I laid my image on the drawers, coated with a thin layer of the orange degreaser and then, using the back of spoon, burnished it onto the wood. It worked okay but I had to go back after and touch up with a sharpie marker. I am extremely happy with the finished product but next time, I want to try Citra Solv and see if it works a little better.



Once my image was transferred, I began to wax the dresser. I applied two clear coats of wax to the entire dresser, using rags to wipe on and wipe off. I found I was able to control the application of the wax much easier this way.


Then I was brave. I used the dark wax. {cue dramatic music} I was really terrified that I was going to wreck all my hard work and that I wouldn't like it once it was applied. Luckily, I discovered a method that worked really well for me. I would rub the dark wax on, making sure to apply it to all the nooks and crannies, and then immediately wipe it off, using a little bit of the clear wax to aid in the removal.


While this seems a little counterproductive, even the little bit of dark wax that remained darkened the paint color in a very natural way and most of the wax stayed in the cracks so it had a very realistic aged look to it. I LOVED it!!


Once I was finished with the waxing, I put all the hardware back on and stepped back to admire my new yellow dresser.


It was such a labor of love but totally worth it.


It's hard to believe that this little beauty {the word "beauty" does apply now..."little" still not so much} was only 5 smackeroos!



When my youngest daughter leaves her nursery to share a room with her big sister, the yellow dresser will stay in the guest room and provide a ton of storage.


And now I will leave you with the obligatory Before/After parting shot. 

Isn't it wonderful what a can of paint can transform?


Sharing with these great parties:


24 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. Thank you so much! I especially love how it takes on different hues and shades in different lighting. So fun!

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  2. I'm always a little envious of people who can see the potential in an object. The finish is just lovely :)

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    1. Thank you! And by the way, I think your name is just about the coolest ever. ;)

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  3. Great job! I love make overs and cheap ones are the best! Stopping by from DBB..thanks for sharing.

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    1. I couldn't agree more! Cheap makeovers are my favorite kind too.

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  4. I love your dresser makeover!! It looks like it was a really fun project! :)

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    1. Thank you! And you're right...it was a lot of fun! :)

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  5. Beautiful, I love a good furniture makeover! What a great idea to add the transfer. I have painted many a drawer pull and the result is always stunning. ;) Thanks for sharing the prettiest $5 dresser ever!!

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    1. Thanks, Kathy! It was my first time trying a transfer but it won't be my last!

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  6. Replies
    1. Thank you, Sarah! I have always been drawn to calmer colors (blues, greens, etc) so this is my first bold color choice. I love it too. :)

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  7. Gorgeous job on this dresser! I was happy to read that you and a few others water down your chalk paint. I've started doing this too because you get a much smoother finish (and hey, the paint goes further too $$$). I haven't tried the Citra Solv transfer method yet (I can't find the stuff either) but the cleaner you used seemed to work pretty good. Love that element of surprise when you open the door - just that added touch that takes a piece to another level. Gorgeous!
    ~Marie@The Interior Frugalista

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    1. Thanks so much, Marie! Yeah, I am definitely a fan of watering down my chalk paint...it's nice to know I'm in good company. :) I talked to a few friends and they all said you can find Citrate Solv at Whole Foods (if you have one near you) or Amazon. But honestly, the generic stuff worked just fine. Thanks again for your sweet comments!

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  8. That transformation is simply amazing! You did a really great job. Makes me want to DIY something :) - Tracey @ Just a Trace

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  9. It's gorgeous! I've pinned it to my Before and After Furniture board.

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  10. thanks for sharing the dresser love it following all media from craft frenzy hop I'm lorraine http://lorrainesresources.blogspot.com

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  11. I have an old dresser just like this. Have been wanting to paint it. What kind of waxes do you use, and where do you get them? thanks so-o-o much.

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    1. Hey, Melissa! I used Annie Sloan clear wax and dark wax for this project. If you go to her website, there should be a list of vendors in your area where you can purchase her products. Good luck with your dresser! :)

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  12. Seriously, SERIOUSLY gorgeous, this is exactly what I was wanting when I was looking for a *tv stand* I bought something else but now you have me ready to be back on the hunt for what I really want!

    Thanks for sharing over at our round up!
    Jenn
    housewivesofriverton.com

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  13. This turned out great! I love the color choice and the floral design on the inside drawers.

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