Refinishing my Dresser-The Great Bedroom Makeover Part 1

We just bought a house for the first time in our lives about a year ago. It’s brand new and we moved in to it in June, so we’ve been here almost 10 months. It’s quite a bit bigger than our last house, which is great, but it means there is tons of empty space till fill up and decorate. Also great, but it can be quite daunting to me because I don’t have an eye for decorating.

I have to admit, since moving here and buying some things like a kitchen table and a new love seat in the first month, we haven’t done much. I think I have been overwhelmed by the sheer amount of projects that could be tackled, that I have just sat back and not tackled any.

But this week I took on a small, bit size project. I refinished our old bedroom dresser.

Refinish an old dresser

I guess I call that bite size because it doesn’t take a lot of creative genius. Buy a can of paint, buy some new hardware, a few hours of work, and voila! It’s like a new dresser.

Now, let me give a bit of back story here. Our bedroom in this new house is HUGE!!! And mostly empty because it is so much larger than we had before. In fact, a friend’s kid commented after seeing it “their room has nothing in it!” He’s right. Check this out.

That’s it. That’s all we have in there. A bed, a couple night stands and a dresser. Pretty huge and pretty empty yes?

Plus, what is in it is not too flattering. I think it’s a funny trick of life that when you get married you get all sorts of wonderful presents from kind and loving family and friends, but at that point in your life you don’t really have any idea of what your style is, so once you figure out your style, your things in your house don’t match your taste. (Still, I am grateful for the people who gave us this furniture and other gifts…don’t get me wrong.)

OK, so we got this dresser when we were first married. It is a fine, sturdy, good quality dresser. You’d never know it’s 11 years old. It is in great condition. But let’s be honest. It’s U-G-L-Y.

I was tired of looking at it but realistically I don’t see us forking out the money for new bedroom furniture any time soon. So, bring on the paint.

First I primed this thing with a fantastic little primer called Zinsser. I got it at Walmart for about $18 for a gallon which so far has lasted me through quite a few projects and is only about 1/3 gone.

The really good news? You don’t have to sand with this primer!  It’s intended to be used to let you skip the sanding step. So unless you have scratches or something that you need to sand out, just prime and paint.

I like to use Benjamin Moore paint because I know it is super high quality and turns out great. I tried and tested that when I refinished our piano a few months ago. (I got mine at Ace Hardware.)

And then I use foam rollers that you can also get at Walmart or Ace Hardware for pretty cheap-a couple of dollars per roller.

So, I removed the existing knobs and then I primed the whole thing and let that dry (it dries really fast which is nice).

Then just added a few layers of paint. It took about 2-3 but only used about half my can of paint. That’s good because my bed is up next.

To get into the tight spots and grooves I just use the end of my roller and smear the paint in there, then roll over it a bunch until it is covered and smooth. You can also use a foam craft brush like you get at Hobby Lobby.

Roll lighter and lighter until it is perfectly smooth and wait for it to dry (also fast with this paint).

I added a finish as well to keep it looking good longer.

Then I added the new hardware that I got from Lowes for $20.

So very happy with the final results. There’s a long way to go in my bedroom still, but that’s a nice start!

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Hey there! I'm Amber, mom of 4 crazy boys, wife of 1 and non-stop, always busy, crazy project doer. (There's a reason why we call it *Crazy* Little Projects.) I love chocolate, reading, sewing and being with people!

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  1. says

    Love the color you chose. Now you need that perfectly funky lamp, a little bit of artwork, etc! And hey, while you’re at it, you should put together a great sitting area with two unique chairs. Those pictures are super exciting because there is so much potential!!! Fun stuff. Are you going to paint the bed? You totally should, it would be awesome!

  2. says

    What kind of finish did you use to top it off after the black was painted on? I did a similar project with my dresser and the paint has chipped and hasn’t lasted and I know I’ll have to touch up the paint, I should’ve put a finished top coat on it…

  3. says

    Great job
    I love the no sand primer! I will have to buy a can of that because sanding can be a hassle sometimes. especially when you’re just going to paint it.

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