The Baby’s Room :: The Dresser

A few weeks ago, the baby turned two. I took this as a sign that I really should get moving on finishing her room, you know, before my husband takes it over as his office sometime in the next few months. A few weeks before her birthday, the dresser we bought from IKEA met an untimely and unfortunate death (well, at least the bottom drawer did) which has had a rather devastating waterfall effect on the state of her room. If there’s no place to put the clothes, they stay in baskets, until she decides it’s time to empty said baskets of course. It was time to get things cleaned up.

Enter this lovely.


A friend of mine has been moving her house around and decided to get rid of a few pieces, this one included.

Dresser Before

The dresser was a tad dusty, the top had a bit of water damage, and needed just a tiny bit of TLC, but otherwise, it was a beautiful piece. So I got out my sander, some paint and wax, and this is what I came up with.

The Dresser

It fits in the corner perfectly, and since the side panel is the view I see from my perch on the rocking chair I decided it need just a little touch of something extra…

Side View

a touch of hand-painted pattern, wiped away and slightly distressed.

Top Corner

I was hoping it would look a bit like old and faded wallpaper. I have to say I’m pretty happy with the result.

Pattern Detail

It was a bit gut-wrenching to go at the pattern with a wet cloth and sand paper, but I went slowly as I built up my courage, and I think the end result was worth the distress.

Dresser Front

The front panels of the dresser seemed to be in pretty good shape, but was feeling a bit rough. I can not believe what a difference 320 grit paper and some dark wax made. I tried the Howard Restore-A-Finish, but I have to say it was the dark wax that made the biggest difference.

Bottom Corner

I painted an undercoat of Annie Sloan’s Duck Egg Blue, touched it up in a few places in with a bit of petroleum wax, then painted a top coat of Annie Sloan’s Provence Blue. A bit of sanding, the pattern painted on top, then a coat of clear wax and a few touches of dark wax to age it ever so slightly.

Dresser Top

The top was sanded down to bare wood, then stained with two different colors of minwax Sedona and Mahogany Red (straight up stain without the poly) with two or three light and buffed coats of dark wax. It’s hard to describe just how much the new top glows.


And last but not least, the pair of teeny tiny booties I knit for her, which evidently, I have forgotten to write about. You’ll see the sweater in a later post about her room, once I finish up another wall.

Boy I hope I get this room finished up soon!





Have you visited these awesome sites where I’ve shared this project?  ::  Miss Mustard Seed  ::  The Shabby Creek Cottage  ::  The Handmade Home  ::  Funky Junk Interiors  ::  Finding Silver Pennies  ::  Under the Table and Dreaming  ::  Today’s Creative Blog



From where I sit today, if I keep my eyes above the level of the floor scattered with sharp-edged plastic toys and kids still in their pajamas, I see the steady, gentle rain of a spring shower. On days unencumbered by the tyrannical schedule of a busy family of six where I can sit and catch my breath, I consider this meditation weather. On other days, it’s merely another tick on the long list of annoyances that gather as I find myself overstretched and unmoored. But after the past few months we’ve had, today’s rain and the quiet contemplation it brings is quite welcome.


There is something about this weather that makes me acutely aware of the spaces that surround me. The grey, edgeless sky brings the contours of my world into relief, focusing my attention on the boundaries that sometimes overlap and sometimes diverge, making me more aware of margins that I don’t often consider. The difficulty of finding center—a center always pulled by the calculus of the shape of the roles we play, the geometry of our environments, the mass of our responsibilities, the weight and buoyancy of our failures and successes—ia always a bit more clear after the gift of time spent in reflection. This is what rainy weather offers me: a space to think, to feel gravity, to place actions and responses along a new axis, to realize that life is often difficult, and messy, and answers aren’t always obvious, to remember that all of this is OK and a part of the experience of being human. When the rain must fall, if I can welcome it as a reminder to be human, to be humane, then maybe I can weather difficult times with more grace.


I have missed this space as I have navigated others that needed my attention. I am many things to many people and I believe I will always struggle with the realization that there will never be enough time as there are items on the to-do list.


And in the hours it has been in writing what should have taken a few minutes, the rain has stopped and the sun is slowly beginning to break through, just as it should.