Sunday, July 1, 2012

Coffee first!

This poor dresser. I don't have a 'before' shot to show but you can picture this, I'm sure. Black, shiny paint with heavy, visible brush strokes. When I went to see it the owner had the blinds closed in the apartment. That's my excuse! I got the dresser home and realized my mistake. Here I was thinking half the work was done for me since it was already painted black. HA!

I tried sanding the brush strokes out. Nope. I wasn't going to strip the paint - that was way too much trouble for this dresser. Plus I had to get it painted and gone since I had half the living room taken up with furniture and we had guests coming. So I whipped out this cityscape using Annie Sloan Graphite over the shiny black. The Graphite looked great but everything else was awful. I really didn't like it, but it was done and that was what counted at the time.

Yeesh. The 80's called and they want their dresser back.

Fast forward to last week. I finally felt up to tackling the dresser again. I told Mr. Bad I was going to show no mercy, I was going to use my belt sander!

I don't know what kind of paint that was, but it stood up to my sander. Humph. I dumped stripper on the top. (Take THAT, dresser!) I applied the stripper three times and in a fit of desperation attacked it again with the belt sander. And after all that, I had the top sorta smooth. The brush strokes were sorta gone.


I moved on and painted. But that black paint wasn't done with me yet. I painted the dresser body with Benjamin Moore Aura in a semi-flat black. Now THAT paint is something wonderful! Love it. Then I used a sample latex (from a garage sale) for the drawers because it was exactly the right color.

Everything went fine until, at the last minute, I decided to distress lightly. Latex doesn't sand so good. I tried the rub method with denatured alcohol and, well, let's just say that at least I didn't burst into tears.
I mean, really?

Now here is how the Aura paint over the black mystery paint distressed. Aura, Baby! 

Benjamin Moore Aura paint rivals chalk paint for user-friendly. If you don't want to spend $40 per quart for paint, try the Aura. You won't be disappointed.

And now, the finished (again) dresser:

Photographed at high-noon, of course. I can't win.

The graphics are hand-painted using craft paint. I printed out the design, then used my projector to transfer the image onto the drawers. The pulls were a challenge, trying to find something that wouldn't compete with the design. I chose these retro pulls and painted them to match the drawers.

And, once again, this dresser is finished! This time, however, it reflects my style. Finally.


  1. Sooooo loving this dresser!


  2. It's a lovely transformation, very nicely done. The dresser now has a nice life, and the words you wrote are very clever and funny. Thanks for sharing

  3. Adorable! You did a fabulous job and I wanted to let you know that I am featuring this today! Stop by and check it out!

  4. I feel like you must know me somehow! LOL I love this dresser, especially the quote! You did such a great job!

  5. Daena - I found you on Miss Mustard Seed's Friday Night Furniture party. I am so happy to have found your blog. You sound like just the type of person I would like to hang out with! Your blog is lovely, your painting skills amazing and your outlook on life with cancer - I can't even tell you how uplifting you are!
    Hugs to you,
    p.s. come and see me at my blog sometime

  6. I giggled a little at the 80's reference...but what was up then about skylines?? great transformation..super job! Thank you for sharing with us at Uncommon!! ;) Bonnie

  7. As always a great transformation, and your painting and creative skills are the best. Never liked those skylines myself. I'm not a coffee girl, but I sure could replace it with tea! Beautiful as always! So glad you shared your creative inspiration with Sunday's Best!

  8. I love this dresser it turned out beautiful & of course I would since I just love my coffee. I would love it if you would share this at my party "Totally Transformed Tuesday" Have a wonderful day. Peggy :-)

  9. Oh, it's perfect! Thank you for sharing this at my Make it Pretty Monday party at The Dedicated House. Hope to see your prettiness again on Monday. Toodles, Kathryn @TheDedicatedHouse