I don't know about you, but I am in LOVE with painted drawers on white dressers. There a lot of ideas out there, but it was the white and navy blue dresser from Land of Nod that I fell hard for. It was just perfect...but the price tag...not so much. So I decided to go down the DIY route and I am thrilled with the outcome!
As part of my summer (now fall) of decorating project, I decided to update the nursery into more of a little boy's room. And since the nursery dresser was never really intended to be a dresser (Expedit Ikea Bookshelf), we decided to hit up Craigslist and find a dresser that a little boy could grow up with. It took a couple months, but we finally found this gem. Solid wood, smooth sliding drawers and a lot of character...price tag $50. Totally within my budget!!
My main attraction to this particular dresser was the space in between the drawers. This was important so that the painted drawers would stand out against the white. The dresser was already in great condition, but I couldn't wait to see what it would look like with a little sprucing. Too bad we bought it in the hottest month of the year (August)...so in the garage it sat...and sat....and sat....until the first cool front of the year.
During the excruciating long waiting period I researched the best paints for restoring furniture. Since the dresser didn't have much of a clear coat, and I knew I didn't want to distress it, I opted against chalk paint for this project. I wanted a clean satin finish that didn't require a bunch of sanding. I narrowed it down to the Sherwin Williams Pro Classic line. It's a water-based enamel used for trim and doors and the best thing is that it doesn't yellow like the oil based paints do.
First I lightly sanded the whole dresser and taped off edges and knob holes.
Then I primed it using ZinsserPrimer. I heard great things about this primer. I'm not sure I was in love with it as much as everyone else. It was a lot thicker than I was expecting and very sticky...that's probably the point. I'm not really into the whole priming thing. It's boring, you don't see it and it's a lot of work. Since the dresser was already in great shape, and didn't have much of a clear coat on it, I wasn't sure if this step was even necessary. But I wanted to do this dresser up right, so I followed all the steps you are supposed to. In the end I'm sure I used less paint than I would have without primer, at least that's what I'm going with.
After 1 coat of primer.
I sanded after the coat of primer and waited a couple days before applying the real paint. I decided to go with a white with a hint of gray. Nothing in my son's room is super white, so I thought it would blend in better. The Pro Classic paint was so easy to work with. Especially following the primer coat. It leveled nicely, as long as you didn't go back over it. I definitely noticed a big difference with warmer weather. I recommend saving this type of project for cooler weather and a new paint brush is key. I used a 2" Purdy angled brush.
I did paint the dresser all the way around. I started the project thinking I wouldn't paint the inside of the drawers, but it just had too much of an unfinished feel. I did tape off the inside so I didn't have to commit to painting all of that!
I painted 3 light coats of white and lightly sanded in between each coat with a fine grit sandpaper. I think I used 320...it was the finest one my husband had laying around.
Now to the fun step! I picked out a pretty blue called Santorini blue (SW #7607). Unfortunately they were out of the darker base to make it in the Pro Classic paint. They said I should get the Emerald instead. I was beyond mad, but I didn't want to drive to another location or wait another week, the weather was right and it was almost nap time, so I went with it.
I cannot tell you how much I LOVE this paint. It went on SO smoothly. It was the thinnest paint I've ever worked with. It has the same self leveling qualities as the Pro Classic, but it was so much smoother, and not as weather dependent! I loved it so much that I also bought another can in gray to paint the inside of the drawers.
I shopped around a while for knobs. There were a lot of cute ones at Home Depot, but buying them individually really adds up. I didn't want to spend more on knobs than I did on the dresser! So when I found a 10 pack of a dark silver knobs at Target on sale, I was sold!
I really love how it turned out. It makes me excited to paint the master bedroom dressers! Maybe someday I will have time to do that!