Farmhouse Dresser Makeover

posted in: Antiques, DIY, Dresser, Favorite Finds, Tutorials | 23


Farmhouse Dresser Makeover /



I recently received a very sweet email from a reader asking me about the Farmhouse Dresser on my Portfolio page. Because the dresser had been painted pre-website, I never wrote about it and I only have phone pictures. (Sorry about that–let’s just say they’re “artistic“, shall we?!) Because it was one of my favorite dressers, I wanted to include it in my furniture portfolio–grainy photos and all. Her email reminded me how much I loved it and it’s sweet story, so I’ve decided to share it after all.


The dresser was a Craigslist find, and I was thrilled when I picked it up that it still had all it’s keyholes and caster feet. Even the drawers were in good shape! You could just feel that it had been loved and taken care of. Here’s some before shots:



Makeover of a farmhouse dresser /


Makeover of a vintage farmhouse dresser /



I just love these farmhouse dressers with their side panels and keyhole drawers! It’s a real shame I don’t come across them more often–they’re very easy to paint, as well 😉 !



Makeover of a vintage farmhouse dresser /



I could tell it had had years of polishing, so after removing it’s hardware, I gave it a quick scuff sand, and one coat of primer. FYI, if you’re not painting the inside of the drawers, make sure to tape them off–especially if you will be selling the piece. Who wants to open a drawer and see sloppy paint marks? Nobody. 😀  And here’s a great tip for the keyholes! You don’t have to actually pop them out to paint the drawers–just rub a little petroleum jelly on them and you can paint right over them. When it comes time to distress, they wipe completely clean–AND POLISHED! Who knew??!.



Makeover of a vintage farmhouse dresser by /



I gave the dresser two coats of “a mixture of a whole bunch of leftover BM flat latex paint”. Again, sorry, pre-website and I never wrote anything down. Tip # 2–If you custom mix a color, and you happen to love it, write it down!….(This tip is more for me than you!) 😀


I distressed it fairly heavily, and gave it two coats of a dark wax. The plan was to replace the original wood knobs with glass, but they just didn’t feel right. The original hardware had the greatest feel when you handled them, so I decided to keep them on the dresser. A quick coat of white paint and light distress was all they needed to demand a little bit of attention, without taking away from the dresser’s rustic, farmhouse feel.



Makeover of a rustic vintage farmhouse dresser /



The dresser’s transformation was complete when I lined the drawers with a blue ticking fabric. This brings me to the dresser’s new story! I had listed it on Craigslist, and got a call right away. The sweetest gentleman was in Seattle for the day with the “big car”, so he thought he would continue his search for an antique dresser for his wife. He wanted to surprise her with a dresser she could use to house all of her fabric and sewing supplies. ♥ Awwwwwwwwww ♥. Don’t you just love stories like that?!  Because I hadn’t posted a picture of the inside of the drawers, he was really pleased to see the ticking fabric, and mentioned that it was his wife’s favorite! She was currently out-of-town and he was pretty excited about the surprise. Like I mentioned…sweet guy. It was a win-win because I was happy my favorite dresser was going to a good home where it could continue to be useful and stay out of a landfill. 😀



Because this isn’t a recent furniture project, you might be wondering what I have been up to all week. Well, for starters, I’ve been working on my second home project from “the list“…painting the back staircase and doors to the bonus room and staining the railing! Normally, I don’t think painting trim is a huge job, but there are stairs and carpeting involved, so fingers crossed on this one. Luckily(??), the back staircase is SUPER ugly, and if it comes out half as well as I’m hoping, it will still be a vast improvement. As for furniture projects, I’ve been in the garage finishing up a chunky, beast of a coffee table. We’ve had tons of rain, so it’s a tad sad working in a cold, dark garage, but if I can’t carry it in to the house by myself, I pretty much have to paint out there. Hopefully, all of my hard work will pay off, and I’ll have pictures to share with you real soon! Take care!

p.s. Any tips on painting steps with carpeting will be greatly appreciated ! 😀


Sharing with these great link parties:

.. … Between Naps on the Porch …. Elizabeth and CoKammy’s KornerSavvy Southern Style … … Knick of TimeThe Turquoise Home .. … Embracing ChangeAverage Inspired …  … My Repurposed Life … … French Country Cottage …  …Dwellings …  …Thoughts from Alice …  … Coastal CharmHome Stories A to Z …… The Painted Drawer … Thrifty Décor Chick …  … Vintage Paint and More Celebrate and DecorateConfessions of a Plate Addict …  Lehman Lane …  Charm Bracelet DivaSeeking Lavender LaneRecreated Designs

Thrilled to have dresser featured at:

Trash to Treasure Tuesdays – Kammy’s Korner

Be Inspired – Elizabeth and Co.

Creative Inspirations Linky Party – Embracing Change

Sundays at Home – Thoughts From Alice

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23 Responses

  1. Really, really pretty. My favorite part is the wheels on the feet. So charming. My advice on painting the wood next to carpeted stairs is don’t – but it’s also on my list for next month so let me know your tricks. 😉

    • Thanks, Kim! I’m already a little burned out on the staircase and ledge…Should have called Pete the painter! 😉 haha

  2. Kathy Rauzi

    Cynthia – you are so industrious!! You make me feel so guilty!
    Very proud of you and love your projects!

    • Awwwww, THANK YOU, Kathy! …. You make me feel guilty when I see you walking up the big hill! 😀

  3. Your dresser is so pretty! I’m always amazed at the before and after’s of furniture makeovers!

  4. Sharon @ Elizabeth & Co.

    My very favorite style of dresser and this one is so pretty now! Happy to feature you this week. Thanks so much for sharing!

    • THANK YOU, Sharon! They’re my favorite, as well–just wish I came across them more often!

  5. Gorgeous!! just painted one for My Farmhouse bedroom make-over..Thanks for sharing.Smiles.Cindy

  6. Great tip on the petroleum jelly! Who knew!?!?! Well, I guess you did…ha! Your dresser turned out just great! nice job!

    • I knew it would block the paint, but was quite chuffed when I wiped it off and they were all shiny and new! 😀 Thanks for hosting a great party!

  7. Wow! What a wonderful transformation! Love this piece and the color you chose is perfect!
    Thanks so much for sharing at AMAZE ME MONDAY!

  8. Cynthia, you did an amazing job on the dresser! Just beautiful:). I like your tip on the keyholes and petroleum jelly I plan to use that in the future:) – Tara

  9. I love it! I am just getting ready to delve into the world of painting a few pieces I have that need updates. I am a little nervous about it! Thanks so much sharing over at Celebrate Your Story!

    • Thanks, Chloe. Warning to you — painting furniture can be addicting! 😀 Take care, Cynthia

  10. You are so ambitious and this came out beautifully!

  11. I’m currently working on a nightstand makeover and I forgot how easy it is to makeover a piece with paint. Love your dresser! Thanks again for sharing at the Celebrate Your Story Link Up Party.

    • Thank you, Danielle. And you’re so right — the power of paint never ceases to amaze! Take care, Cynthia

  12. Cynthia I love this! Your choice of color was perfect. And the ticking idea sounds lovely. So nice that it went to a good home. Thanks for sharing at Vintage Charm! xoKathleen

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