October 8, 2013

A Tale of Two Dressers

By Amy

Anybody else out there obsessed with home decor?

For reals, if we owned cable, I would watch HGTV for days on end.  I'd have to move the toilet and fridge into the living room, so I'd never miss a nano-second of "Love it or List It" or "Property Brothers".  

HGTV was very important to me when I had cable and a 1- month-old baby.  I never got out of the house; I was either bouncing my reflux-y baby on the exercise ball or sitting on the couch, hooked up to the milk machine (breast pump..."'shudder'") while binging out on tv home remodels.  

Yeah.  It's a good thing that I haven't had cable since then.  And since we've never owned our own home yet, I have to expend all my addictive, remodel energies on decor-ing the walls of the home we're renting and re-doing furniture.

SO, here's two projects my patient husband and I finished up this summer!  They took some WORK, but they were so worth it.

Two DIY Dresser Redo's!  Enjoy! :)

Ok, so this dresser looked like a piece of crap when I saw it upside down, with the drawers out, and one leg off, in the middle of a crowded yard sale.  But I saw the cool legs and funky handles, and pounced.  I just knew it had some serious potential.  And, you can re-finish wood, so it was no big deal to me that it looked like it had been kicked off a truck and rolled down a hill!  

But, if you see something you like at a yard sale, you gotta be chill.  Act all nonchalant, like you don't really care about such a hunk of junk... "How much for this dresser thing?  (act a little disgusted by the nicks and dings...) She answers and you reply, "Oh $5?  Hmmm...well, I guess we could pay that."  (Still playing it sooo cool.)  But really, I'm so excited, I want to throttle the lady perusing purses next to me..."DID YOU HEAR THAT?  SHE SAID 5 FREAKIN DOLLARS!!!!  AHAHAHA! (maniacal laugh...)"

When we walked off with that scratched-up beauty, I felt like waving and hollering back to the yard sale shoppers "I got it SUCKERS!!! Ya'll don't know what you just MISSED!!!  IN YO FACE!"

But, no I don't holler like a football player on roids...I'm still playing it coool.  (Till the car door shuts at least.  Ha!)

The Re-do process:
Um, it took alot more time then I realized when I was gleefully victory dancing at the yard sale. (well, in my mind I was.)  But still SOOOO worth it.  Oh, so worth it.  I love this baby.  And, now we have so much storage in our kitchen for extra bowls and dishes and my art class supplies.  And Hayden can't open the drawers!!!!  WOOOO!  Toddler proofed! :)

Leg off and a sticker too! 

Lots of sanding.

My boys!

I help too, I swear--it's just I'm usually taking the pics. :)

Clear coating...4 layers of it....ughhhhhhhhh.  Then you have to wait 8 hours between each coat...suspense, people!

Hanging the boards to dry

BAM!  Oh I love it so much!  I want to weep! 

Sigh....worth the work.
Now for beauty numero dos.  This one was so wretched when we bought it off of craigslist.  It was in another city, so we had my mom pick it up.  We probably wouldn't have bought it, had we seen it in person, cause it had some damage-- but my mom didn't want to make that call, so she handed over our money and brought us the precious, heart covered dresser.  Ha!  We decided to make it work, and we are so happy with the end result!  (Thanks for picking it up mom!)

See, miracles DO exist!  Ok, back to the nast.  I'm not really going to get all detailed into the process...there was a lot of sandin', then a lot more sandi'n...the hearts were stamped on with some thick paint, so we had to sand them till they were flat, or you could see hearts through the blue.

Then several coats of paint.  I waffled back and forth on the color of the knobs 3 times, then finally spray painted them this light blue that I had left over from another project (and the sprinklers came on while they were drying on the grass in the front yard...ha, that sucked.)  and...VOILA!  It is finished!

See, there was some damage that we fixed with some wood putty.

LOVE this little trunk.  I found it at a different garage sale, and Patrick was like, "Are you kidding?!"  But he likes it on the dresser!  You'd think he'd just trust me by now.  :) 

Ha...another glamour shot of the little trunk.  Along with a little teddy bear from our japanese exchange student, some globes (I've collected them since I was in middle school) and a pic of Jesus that I love!

Sweet boy! :)

Well, that's it, friends!  Can you believe the hearts on the "before" pic!?  Ha!  Maybe if we had a girl....jk, nope!

What do you think?  I was nervous to paint such a large piece such a dark color, but I'm happy with it.

I think it's super fun to see other people's home projects too!  So, send me your before and after pics to share here on SOM! (amy.the.graham@gmail.com)  It's always nice to get a virtual high five for some hard work, right?  You can help me responsibly get my home decor re-model fix, since it's unhealthy for me to watch HGTV.  :)

And, if you're new here, be sure to LIKE "Swag on, momma!" to join the party!  We have lots of fun hanging out and discussing all sorts of important (and not so important) stuff.  We'd love to have YOU!  Just click the little "Like" button on the upper right margin...it's calling your name. :)  Or click "Join this Site" button to never miss a post!  And, if you really want to get me doing my on-roids-victory-dance...do both!  Ha! :)


  1. Just so you know I saw these pics pinned on interest by a bunch of people. Your famous and they look fabulous. I should show you the book shelf I have yet to redo...

    1. Woohoo! Fame and fourtune is MINE! Haha! :) And, I'd love to see the bookshelf! :)

  2. Wow, these are great, Amy! :) The two shades of blue work so well together. Love how you played it cool at the yard sale, too! LOL

    1. Thanks, Mamma Ho! It took some self-control. :)

  3. You are so cute! I love these makeovers and your special finds!! Way to go

  4. What is the name of the wood stain/paint you used? I really like the color and am thinking about doing something similar myself. Could you provide the brand, store you bought or online website, and name of the wood color?


Share your questions, comments, and compliments...we like 'em all! :) Don't be shy: we want to hear from YOU! Plus, you can let this lady know her story was heard--I promise your comment means a lot to her!

Thanks, friends! :)