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


39 thoughts on “The Baby’s Room :: The Dresser

  1. It looks gorgeous! And speaking as the mother of an almost three year old who who doesn’t have a finished room, I salute you!

    • Heh… I guess I get a few points since this is now the fifth baby room I’ve had to pull together, although maybe the “baby spot” in the last house doesn’t really count…

  2. beautiful! And yes, watch out for husband creep in your house. Without me realizing how it happened, Bruce has 5 shops and I have 0 craft rooms. 😦 :-p Is there really an emoticon for how I feel about this??

  3. And just in case you were wondering how anyone can have 5 shops: Welding shop in the garage, machine shop in the furnace room, woodworking shop in the actual designated shop area of the basement, fairly clean electronics shop in the 2nd guest bedroom, and computer lab in the guest bedroom.

    • Well, it’s obvious you need an addition to the house for your long-arm quilting machine! Unlike the lathe, a quilter can’t build itself!! 😉

  4. It is really cute. I love the color and the design on the side. Great job! I had a dresser with the rounded drawers that I sold at one of our markets and I kick myself all the time that I got rid of it.

    • Thank you so much Ericka for your comment and for stopping by! I’m thrilled that I was able to find such a nice dresser for her. I’m hoping we’ll get years of use out of it!

    • Thank you Bonnie! I stopped by your blog, and promptly plopped it into my reader! You have some beautiful pieces!

  5. Hi – visiting from Miss Mustard Seed’s blog – I love the way this dresser turned out! The painting detail on the side is adorable, but I also love how you left the beautiful wood grain on the drawer fronts (I’m a wood grain fanatic!). So glad I stopped by!

    • Thanks Brynne! I wasn’t sure I was going to be able to get the finish back on those fronts without sanding it down to raw wood, so I almost painted it. So very glad I didn’t!

  6. What a lovely piece to start with and the end result is beautiful. (Your technique does remind me of Miss Mustard Seed’s.) Love the knitted Saartje’s booties! xo

  7. Gorgeous, Cheryl. I love the dresser. It is perfect for her! Love the color and the handpainted pattern. Such a lucky little one. Can’t believe she’s already two! Would love you to share this at my link party on Sunday if you get a chance!

    • Thank so much Danielle for the high praise! I was really hoping to put this up on your link party this weekend… it’ll be my first submission to yours!

    • Thanks so much Kim! I’m not sure I have a ton of patience (you should ask my kids for the most honest assessment) but it did help that I only worked on it a half hour to an hour at a time… and that pattern painted up much more quickly than you might imagine!

  8. Well—what else is there to say cutie? I do love it. I can see the shinny top in on of the pictures. Did you get the extra piece? What does the little one think of it? Has she tried to open the drawers yet? Good job.

    • Thanks Mom! Haven’t gotten that last piece yet, but it is on the list of things to do 😉 She does love it and she spent all morning opening and closing the drawers… which are still empty 😉

  9. This chest is lovely! My favorite part of this post was when you said “the finished result was worth the distress.” HA! What a punny pun. 🙂 Visiting from MMS.

    • Heh… Thanks Jenna! I almost edited that little comment out; you made me incredibly happy I left it in 😉 Thanks for stopping by!

    • Wow, Elizabeth!! What an amazing comment! Thank you! Honestly, painting the pattern didn’t take nearly as much time as I though it would once I got going. Q-tips and an angled brush did all the work! Thanks so much for stopping by!

    • Thank you so much for stopping by a dropping a line Stacey! What a beautiful blog you have… added it to my blog reader and am looking forward to “getting to know you!”

  10. Pingback: handmade savvy saturday | the handmade home

    • Yay, Anne, there is no better thing to hear as a maker to hear that you’ve inspired someone else! Thank you so much for such high praise! I’ll hope you’ll drop me a line and let me see the results when you’re done!

    • Heh… thanks Alex. Maybe it makes you less phobic because I left some of the wood finish here and there 😉

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s