I love old furniture. When I set out to decorate the nursery for our newest addition, I wanted to find an old and somewhat cheap piece of furniture that I could restore using chalk paint. Restoring furniture is intimidating to say the least when it comes to sanding, priming, and staining. It’s especially intimidating if you have no experience working with furniture. That’s why chalk paint is the perfect “go-to” as it doesn’t require any prep work other than a good cleaning with soap and water.
After perusing the Internet and Pinterest for ideas, I came to the conclusion that chalk paint seems to work look the best on furniture pieces with a lot of detailwork. After searching Craig’s List, I found the dresser below. I instantly loved it because it was not only old and European looking, but also had a good deal of detailwork. Fortunately for me, I was able to buy it for $125 and it’s real wood—something hard to find in more recently manufactured pieces.
Since I wanted the furniture in the nursery to be white, I chose Annie Sloan’s “Old White.” This color has a little bit of cream in it and seemed perfect since I didn’t want the dresser to be too white. To my dismay, I found the color too creamy and yellowish for my liking. It also didn’t match the white crown molding or crib that I already had in the room that are more of a true white. Since Annie Sloan paint is not cheap, I really didn’t want to pay another $34.95 for a can of “Pure White” so I decided to try and wax it with Annie Sloan’s white wax, which is relatively new on the market. (If I had liked the color, I would have opted for her clear wax).
In choosing the white wax, my hope was to make the the dresser a more traditional white color. After about ten coats of the white wax, the dresser was to my liking. I know ten coats may seem like a lot, but from what I’ve read dressers and other high use pieces of furniture need numerous coats of wax to protect them from wear and tear. Since this dresser was doubling as a baby changing table, I didn’t want to take the risk of putting all of this work into it only to ruin from a diaper explosion.
After applying all the wax and letting it dry, the fun began. I distressed the dresser with very fine sandpaper to bring out the details. Here is a close-up of the distressing:
Here is the final product: