The Perfect Color for a Craig’s List Dresser

I am in love with those adorable french provincial dressers. The flourishy handles are what really get my heart pounding.When I saw this dresser on Craig’s List for $35 dollars, I pounced!

 Disclaimer: I stole this picture from the previous owner’s Craig’s List Ad.

Oooo baby, don’t you just love that faux gold outlined accents and off white laminate top. Yes, I said laminate. But I wasn’t afraid of it. For $35 who cares if it gets messed up. If you never take the risk, you’ll never learn anything new, right?!

The drawers were still in good shape, but a little loose around the joints, so I squirted my new favorite Gorilla Glue into the joints and clamped lassoed them up!

Then I used newspaper to protect any of the areas I didn’t want sprayed.

After sanding all the surfaces to rough them up, I put a coat of primer on everything. Loving that crisp clean white, but the dresser told me to “Keep Calm and Carry On.”  So, I cooperated and continued on to another color.

Next, I sprayed Rustoleum Heirloom White and distressed the surface with a wood stain.

The drawer pulls got their own treatment of automotive primer followed by Oil Rubbed Bronze paint. Thank goodness they were happy with their new color because – I’m telling you – that dresser was certainly acting like a diva! She was still demanding a new color.

I have seen many Nantucket Fog makeovers and decided to make a run to Ace Hardware to pick up a small sample of that blue gray color. And I grabbed a can of artistic glaze.

After two coats of the Nantucket Fog glaze, that little dresser still wanted something else. Sheesh! So I pulled out some leftover blue paint from my dormer window shutters.

Finally, she shut up! It’s a good thing too, because I LOVE this color. I love it so much that I hauled my tired hiney back over to Ace to match the color just for you.

Does anyone else get starry eyed and entranced by all these fabulous colors?

The closest match is Buxom Blue from Benjamin Moore. Not too far off from Nantucket Fog, but you know those divas they want what they want!

Now, all important divas need something to wear that gets them noticed. Thus, I decoupaged some wrapping paper on the side (tutorial is here.)

And then because I liked the pattern so much, I blew it up and added it to two corners of the dresser top (tutorial for adding a sharpie stencil.)

I added some beachy blue glaze over the wrapping paper and the top graphic.

And I have to tell you that – halleluiah – I finally figured out the proper technique when using the valspar glazes (the tutorial is here.)

I finished up with three coats of a semi-gloss polyurethane.

And here is that stunningly beautiful diva of a dresser. Transformed from Cinderella to the Belle of the ball!

Isn’t it amazing what a little oil rubbed bronze can do!
 Hard to believe this was wrapping paper in a previous life!
 Peek-a-boo I see a cute stencil.

Now, I have to convince Pretty Handsome Guy that our master bedroom furniture doesn’t have to be all matchy matchy!

 Because I LOVE our Pottery Barn Sleigh Bed. 
But not the matching dresser.
 I love the new-old dresser! What do you think?

Any helpful hints on using Jedi mind tricks on unsuspecting Pretty Handsome Guy?

Update: Thank you to my readers that pointed out that I installed the handles upside down. They have been fixed now ;-).


  1. Green Willow Pond says:

    Your dresser turned out so beautiful. That wallpaper idea is genious! Can't wait for the tutorials.

  2. Loving your blog. I need some tricks for convincing my husband too. If I buy something on the cheap, I can make it into a masterpiece, but our "nice furniture" ends up being shabby in comparison. Very ironic!

  3. Erin @ Two Story Cottage says:

    WOW. Awesome job. The dresser is just beautiful. Can't wait to read more!! Our bedroom furniture was my hubby's before we got married so I have my work cut out for me too. He does not want my paintbrush or sander anywhere near it. SIGH. I've changed the drawer pulls more times than I can count. It is good stuff too so there is no hope in changing it out anytime soon either. :)

  4. You put that Wrapping paper on and I thought you were crazy but it looks so good!

  5. Sherry@ Ties2ThePast says:

    Very nice!! Hope to see the tutorials soon!!!

  6. paperglueetc says:

    Very nice, we just refinished a dresser and I know it's hard work. You did great!

  7. Sue@Uniquely Chic says:

    I am drooling over here. You did such an amazing job on this. Can't wait for the tutorials.

  8. very good color for a craig's list dresser. love the wrapping paper idea. great job!

  9. I LOVE this! I see the french provincial furniture at yard sales, love it, but always pass it up because I don't know what to do with it. I would love to use one for a tv stand, but not sure if I could remove the top drawers for electronic equipment- what do you think?

  10. I love the dresser! I actually had one exactly like that, the whole bedroom set, growing up. My mom still has it and my room is now a guest bedroom! :) I love yours better, you did an amazing job with the colors!!

  11. Tru@TRU TALES FEATS says:

    When you find out the secret to changing hubby's mind let me know. I have a hubby who is totally traditionalist. I like a good natural oak too, but I'm not averse to painting pine or laminate. I have been showing him pics of things I like online, and maybe, just maybe he's seeing the light! There are so many wonderful projects out there that people have already done, that it takes the worry out of "Will it look good or not". Yours, BTW is one of those great projects.

  12. Bravo. I love the new dresser. I can't wait for the tutorials. Thanks for sharing.

  13. Midwest Cottage says:

    WOW! That was a lot of work but boy it's beautiful. I am speechless. I cannot wait to see your tutorials!! Please send me a link when you get them done.

    Great job. You are so talented.

  14. Caitlin Campbell says:

    Thank you for this tutorial. I am getting ready (at some point) to refinish a bed for my daughter so these tips will come in handy. And what's wrong with that tall matching dresser…it looks pretty nice to me :)

  15. great job….can't wait for the tutorial on your glaze technique.

  16. Melanie {The Tiny Tudor} says:

    Looks great- so much more stylish now! I think you picked the perfect color!

  17. That's a pretty amazing transformation!

  18. Anita @ GoingALittleCoastal says:

    You ended up with a great color. Are you wanting to swap dresser in your room or paint your tall chest in the same way? Either would look wonderful.

  19. I love following your blog. I am a carpenter also and look forward to finishing my many projects like an Ohia post for the porch. Love the dresser transformation.

  20. Amanda-The Nutritionist Reviews says:

    Wow I absolutely LOVE that dresser! Great idea!

    I just found your blog through another blog! Have a great night.

    Amanda @

  21. Great makeover, it looks so lovely, bravo:))
    Greetings from Europe, Biljana

  22. Wonderful do over.. the dresser looks great, especially the wrapping paper. It's a trick I use too.. it's so much easier to manipulate than wallpaper, and way cheaper.
    There's a bit of the 19th century Swedish about it… I think that's the colour.
    I'm right with you on the high boy too Brittany.
    As far as PH guy goes.. is it painting over the wood that bothers him..? or the fact that the furniture than won't match the bed, because if its the latter then a dozen or so photos of the very best bedroom designs should be enough to convince him that matchy matchy is BAD !!!
    If it's the not painting the wood.. well then I can't help you.. it's in their genes you know !!
    Jo xx

  23. Cozy.Cottage.Cute. says:

    Perfection! Can't wait to read your tutorials… :)

  24. Just this... Alice says:

    WOW! What a transformation! Your handsome guy has to realize that you have a masterpiece now for a dresser instead of the old furniture store cookie cutter furniture everyone else has. That is truly amazing. Maybe we all need to have a chat with him about appreciating your talents. Thanks for sharing it turned out great.

  25. love it so much! I can't seem to find anything good on Craigslist. Maybe I will have to check more often.

    Looking forward to all the tutorials you promised :)

  26. Laurie Jones says:

    This is absolutely to die for, love the color, love the wallpaper and the dresser takes me back to when I was a little girl when they were all the rage, way to amp it up to 2010!!

  27. Oh yes! Love the new color, and you're right. Nothing to lose! It looks gorgeous.

  28. Rita @ says:

    So Martha Stewart. Wrapping paper idea and blowing up pattern is an incredible touch!

  29. Its So Very Cheri says:

    I love the color. It is fabulous.
    Thanks for linking up. We look forward to getting to know you and seeing more and more of your projects.


  30. I am so impressed. beautiful piece, your attention to detail is fantastic. I just found your blog, and I am in love! you have a new follower! :)

  31. Between Blue and Yellow says:

    Very pretty! I did a similar dresser not too long ago

  32. Funny I should come across this very tutorial today of all days. I purchased the exact set of furniture for my daughter (randomly finding each matching–yet OLD–piece for my daughter's room). I was just wondering how to paint the laminate? Did you do anything special with the top? Thanks! Love this site!!!

  33. ALVN of WhisperWood Cottage and Junkologie says:

    The color is divine! And the wrapping paper…clever and gorgeous!! Thanks for linking up to the DIY Project Party monthly contest! :)


  34. Sonya@Beyond the Screen Door says:

    Beautiful job! The dresser looks fabulous!

  35. I love this project it is fantastic. You really did a gorgeous job on it. Thanks for joining me this week. I would love if you added lil ole me to the linky list above:) So others know as well about my partay! Have a great weekend. Debbie

  36. Jen @ says:

    WOW – gorgeous!! That dresser looks amazing. I love that you decoupaged wrapping paper on it. Genius!


  37. This really turned out fabulous~ thanks for sharing the steps with us! Hopped over from Garage Salen Party…

  38. Mod Podge Amy says:

    This is awesome! I love it.

  39. That turned out very well. I love the wrapping paper on the sides.

  40. Courtney ~ French Country Cottage says:

    Love how that dresser came out!! Fantastic job!! The paint color and finish is perfect and the decoupaged sides are so inspired- coming over form Debbie's- nice to meet you!! :)

  41. It is beautiful…the color and the stencil are perfect!

  42. Stephanie Lynn @Under the Table and Dreaming says:

    Brittany – Your dresser is gorgeous! I love all the detail you have added – all your work shows. Fantastic job! Thanks so much for linking up! Hope you have a wonderful week! Stephanie Lynn

  43. The DIY Show Off says:

    Love the new color – great technique! It's beautiful! Have a great week!


  44. Courtney {a thoughtful place} says:

    BEAUTIFUL! I have a similar dresser that I had growing up. Hmmm! Really love the sides of it. Nicely done!

  45. I love your PB dresser. What if you do something similar to the country french dresser and just add a leaf stencil here and there to match your headboard? (Start with a little paint- maybe hubby will see the light!)

  46. I♥naptime w/ Chocolate Sundaes says:

    Love this!!

  47. hamiltonohio says:

    Where is the mirror? It suppose to have a mirror. I had the same exact dresser. It was bought for me in the late 1970's when I was 12. I only have one photo of me standing in front of it. Your dresser looks nice. I wish I still had mine. I through it away in 1995. I regret it now.

  48. Awesome!!!

  49. paige fuentes says:

    i’m not sure how you blog opened up to this tutorial but im soooo glad and grateful that it did!! I just got a new dresser (it’s actually a chest of drawers like your pottery barn one) for our soon-to-be-renovated bedroom and had NO CLUE how i was going to make it match and be pretty, but i know now!! Thanks so much! You made it look awesome and this is a fantastic tutorial!! <3 it!


  50. i have this exact dresser….i painted mine almost the same color as yours too. you can see it here:

    i love how yours turned out…

    hugs, cindy

  51. In the process of repainting an antique dresser of mine, which is about the same size as this one. Can I ask how many cans of spray paint you used for the primer? We live out in the boonies and I don’t want to not have enough.

  52. I have a nightstand just like this dresser (yep!) that came to me free as someone else’s cast-off. I’ve been wondering what to do with it, and your transformation has given me inspiration. Thanks!

  53. keri stevenson says:

    You are one of my new HERO”s! This came out amazing!Keri

  54. Your dresser looks absolutely awesome! I love the color.

  55. I have a dresser,chest and a nightstand just like this one but I really don’t know how to make this transformation do you have a video to walk me through the steps.

  56. Hannah Olson says:

    Oh my gosh i own a whole set that matches this dresser including this dresser. My set is still in the off white and gold but also the dresser above has an attached mirror. The set also has a tall dresser and a twin sized bed frame all in the off white and gold. I must say i am blown away to see my dresser which i thought was pretty chic, possibly expensive antique and one of a kind was sold for only $35. Anywho i like the way you fixed this one up looks very nice and perhaps you should scour the web for the rest of the set since there is obviously more than one set.

  57. Brittany,
    Did you also sand the laminate top?

  58. Is anyone who said they have a set like this willing to part with it? I’ve been trying to find a whole bedroom set but can only find pieces from different sellers. I want them all to be the painted the same and many sellers ahave already refurbished them, which tacks on a big price tag. Thanks for the help and ideas!


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