Throwback Thursday: Our Drexel Dresser

This week’s throwback (#TBT) is one of my most popular posts: how I painted our dresser.

photo 4 (23) Moving has been motivating. And maybe the fact that I don’t have a job right now helps. That aspect has been such a blessing so that I can really get settled and “nest.” If you don’t know the situation, I am finishing up my Master’s degree in Nursing to be a Family Nurse Practitioner. I will be done at the end of the summer, but my hubs and I just moved to Fort Smith, Arkansas from central Texas and so I left my previous job. Because of where I am at in my program and the requirements this summer, there is no way I can work in one state and finish my clinicals in another. So, I am a full-time wife, puppy mommy, and homemaker. For a month.

I’m enjoying every minute of it.

So our dresser in our bedroom is big, and we have had since before we got married (three years Wednesday!) and we got it at a garage sale. It’s in fabulous condition and has a lot of detail. Did I mention it’s big? So although I have wanted to paint it for a while, there was no moving it to the garage. Until we actually moved everything we own.

So I told the hubs to just leave it in the garage and I will paint it, asap. No 1 (31)I decided on ASCP Old White, because it’s timeless. Our bedding has grey, mint, purple, and some blue in it so white would be the easiest color to coordinate with, in addition to my plans for the wall color for the future.

I started with the drawers and applied a generous coat of Old White. I hate to sound proud, but y’all, I am getting better at this chalk paint. Maybe I am just slow, but I am learning the shortcuts. A generous coat of one of the colors that doesn’t cover as well (as Duck Egg) can make it so much easier, if you are going to distress. If you want full coverage, that’s a different story. But for most of what I do, there is not need to apply all kinds of paint to just rub it off!

Back to the drawers. I’m going to be honest with you. Somehow, the paint got dirty. Did I mention in my post about painting the hutch that this happened? What causes it is that there is dirt (duh) like dust on the furniture that was not removed. Like in the tiny corners that are hard to clean. So when I painted with white paint, sections of it came out with a brown tint. Yuck. I thought this might happen again this time so I (tried) to clean it really well before I started to 2 (30)Apparently it didn’t matter. But you know what? Distressing can heal a multiple of sins.

I went back and read this wet distressing post I had seen before and used for this console table (but it didn’t work on this end table) and my suspicions were affirmed, you must do it soon after the paint is dried- don’t wait overnight. I used a kitchen sponge as she suggested (with the hard scrubby side), got it wet (more than damp), and first wiped over the paint (concentrating on the dirty areas) with the soft side. This softens the paint. I even rub the sponge over a whole drawer or side of the dresser first and then work on each section to start the softening process. Next, use the rough scrubby side to distress. You should see the paint come off very easily. Which was awesome in my case. I was able to scrub away the dirty paint!photo 3 (26)Look at how much better the corner looks!photo 4 (24)If you were to look realllllly close, you could see where I couldn’t get the sponge and there is still dirt. But I don’t think in reality you will be able to tell. If you are looking that close, well, I’ll give you a prize.

So I did some pretty heavy distressing all over the dresser to show off the details of the wood and the deep color. And let me tell you, I. LOVE. DISTRESSING. THIS. WAY. It is sooo much easier and makes no mess. You have to go rinse off the sponge periodically, but no saw dust everywhere, no buying endless sanding sponges. And the paint comes off 2 (29)Details.

I decided not to change the hardware at this point for a few reasons. 1. It is already dark, pretty, and in good condition. 2. There is a lot of hardware and would be pricey to replace. 3. We really need the dresser back in our bedroom. You know, to put clothes in. Changing hardware out is something that can be done no problem once it is in our 1 (30)I waxed it all up and moved her (with help obviously) on back to our room. We had missed 4 (23)She’s back and we are in love. Don’t ever leave again, ok?photo 5 (17)Massive, right? Look at all that storage!photo 4 (21)This fabulous old suitcase serves as our tv platform for our lil’ baby 2 (28)Like  my jewelry corner? The cheese grater is an awesome way to hang dangly earrings! And the cute silver dish was an awesome thrift store score!photo 4 (22)Look who decided to photobomb for some lovin’ during my photoshoot! I can’t be mad when they are just so cute.

photo 1 (29)Don’t you love this old fan? I found it for a steal at an antique store here in Fort Smith when we just came to check out the city. It works and is lovely. I love how the paint is so bright 3 (23)photo 3 (24)photo 5 (15)I’m so pleased with how she turned out. Plus, we were able to finally get all of our clothes put away! No more digging through boxes for a shirt!photo 4 (23)Funny little piece of info about this dresser- I just discovered that it is a Drexel! Good stuff. When the hubs turned it around for me to paint I was like, “what?!” We will be keeping her for a long time. No wonder she is so pretty, someone paid a pretty penny for her at one time.

Update: We ended up selling this dresser a few months later for two reasons. One, we were able to sell it for a good price and needed the money. Two, we already had a dresser waiting in the wings that has more storage and is less bulky. Also, before I sold it I did a quick coat of Old White on top of the wax (and then followed with wax) because the paint on top had tinted due to the stain. It may have been barely noticeable, but it made a difference.


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