Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Vintage Nautical Dresser

I discovered this vintage dresser at a local estate sale. I had been keeping my eye out for something exactly like this for my husband. Frankly, I'm tired of sharing my dresser :) I bought this piece for $50, which I believe is a very fair price for it's age and condition. It is solid wood and has the dovetail drawers. Nice!

Here is what this little gem looked like beforehand. Built tough, but ugly. This project was a little more difficult than most since I had to consider someone else's opinion on the piece. My husband asked for green and chose his own color, which I agreed with. However, we did not come to a consensus on how to redo the drawers. It took some trial and error (and disagreements) till finally I said I know exactly what to do, you'll love it. Just trust me!

I sanded down the entire piece because it really needed it. I also had a few areas to patch up with wood filler. 

I sanded down all the drawers to the original wood. I thought this would look great with the drawers re-stained. 

The color chosen for the dresser is Bullfrog from Lowes, which I bought in a sample size. I like to paint with chalk paint since it's so versatile. I usually make my own chalk paint so I am not limited to the store colors or the expense of Annie Sloan. Click here my directions on making your own chalk paint.

One of the most important steps in painting with chalk paint, is to lightly sand after each coat of paint has fully dried. Use a very fine grain, for example I use 400 grit. This will give your piece a very smooth finish without removing your fresh coat of paint. Afterwards, always use a clean cloth to wipe away the excess debris. I usually apply two coats of paint, but you can be the judge. Some pieces are much harder to cover, particularly very dark pieces you're trying to paint white! 

I stained all the drawers with a Minwax Water Based Wood Stain I had made at Lowes in Nutmeg Brown. This is a fast drying wood stain that is available in about 40 different colors. The Lowes assistant said this is only available as a "quart" (which technically isn't correct since its 29 oz) and is a little pricey ($10-$12), but I know I'll use this for many other projects.

I stained the drawers according to the directions on the can. Make sure all your pieces match once they're dry. It is definitely possible to have one or more drawers come out lighter/darker if you aren't super careful. My two small top drawers appeared lighter than all the other drawers after one coat. I applied one additional coat to those drawers and they matched perfectly afterwards. It helps if you are applying in good lighting too. Some of my photos are at night, as you can tell. Much harder to work at night without adequate lighting. I really need Santa to build me a workshop. 

I applied a water based polyacrylic protective finish in Clear Satin to each drawer. My personal preference is the satin as I do not like glossy furniture. I usually apply at least two coats. On surfaces that will have a lot of activity I apply 3 coats. 

In between your poly coats lightly sand with a steel wool pad so you'll have a smooth finish. After your last application, do not sand. 

The new knobs are my favorite part of this dresser. Especially the antique brass knobs with maps we found at Hobby Lobby, which just opened in my area for the first time! I am in love with this store! The other 8 Compass knobs we ordered from Amazon. After this photo was taken, my husband "corrected" all the knobs so they are pointing North appropriately. I guess he won't get lost now.

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