There is Life in the Old Girl Yet

Colour Saturated Life | Two Tone Painted Dresser Before & After using Miss Mustard Seed Milk Paint in Schloss & Ironstone

I spend a lot of my time putting furniture back together…..not, as you would think, painting furniture. Painting furniture is the easy bit, it can take a lot of time (especially with lighter colours) but overall it is the quick part of the job. The most time consuming and challenging part is fixing the breaks, hiding the flaws and trying to overcome the years of abuse and neglect a lot of the furniture I buy receives. I am of the opinion that a lot of people actually don’t know how to look after wood furniture. People yell at you for painting furniture and criticize you for destroying history but they never get angry at the person or people who caused all the damage to it in the first place. When a piece of vintage (not antique) furniture ends up in my shed it has already been neglected by other people, they can only see the flaws and just want it gone. I see past the flaws and see what it could be. And, yes, that usually means paint. It has no value to anyone if someone cannot fall in love with it, lets be honest, very few of my before’s are love worthy. My favourite part of what I do is when I hand over the furniture to it’s new owner and they gush over it and inevitably tell me it is going to a loving home….you see they love it and that is always my intention. In doing all my work I am really finding homes for neglected and unloved furniture that people have given up on. I don’t mind being criticized for painting furniture, to be honest I don’t really care what they think, because at the end of the day I see what I am doing in a different light to them and they can have their opinion and I can have mine. I come in at almost the end of the story for the furniture I transform and in doing what I do I hope that I can give them one more chapter.

The piece of furniture I have to show you today was definitely neglected. It is not the worst I have seen, but it shows its scars in a greater way. This Before looks way better than it actually was.

Colour Saturated Life | Vintage Dresser Transformation

When I bought it the wood top had split at its seams….there were huge gaps between each length of wood. The owner tried to “convince” me it was designed this way but I knew otherwise. I could see the dowels that had given up on holding it together. It was sad really. It also had a huge chunk out of the back on one leg and the drawers were a bit wonky and didn’t sit or slide right anymore. It had a mirror at one stage as it still had the supports at the back and I wonder what details the mirror would have had, what it would have been like it in all its former glory. Finally, the sad excuses for hardware did this dresser no justice! The poor thing needed a little (let’s be honest! a lot of) work.

Colour Saturated Life | Vintage Dresser Transformation

So I went to work trying to repair it and I have to say it wasn’t easy. As you know I love to be able to restore some of the wood, especially wood tops but this one was a challenge. We used wood glue and my huge furniture clamps to pull those gaps closed but even after all our hard work (my hubby helped clamping this one, that is how tough this was) one would not close completely. I did think about painting it then. But, I chose to use a high quality wood filler to fill in the gap instead. Now this isn’t the best fix, ideally it would have been great to get nice tight joins, but the damage was too far gone. To hide all the stains I chose to stain the wood with my favourite dark stain Black Japan and I have to say even though it is not perfect the top is smooth and one piece again and you can still revel in all that grain. When it came to painting the body and the drawers I really wanted to highlight the details on this dresser, it really had so much going for it and that is what made me buy it in the first place. I decided to paint it two tone with Miss Mustard Seed Milk Paint in Ironstone and Schloss……the final finishing touch were these Milk White Cut Glass Knobs.

Colour Saturated Life | Painted Dresser Before & After using Miss Mustard Seed Milk Paint in Schloss & Ironstone

Colour Saturated Life | Painted Dresser Before & After using Miss Mustard Seed Milk Paint in Schloss & Ironstone

Colour Saturated Life | Painted Dresser Before & After using Miss Mustard Seed Milk Paint in Schloss & Ironstone

Colour Saturated Life | Painted Dresser Before & After using Miss Mustard Seed Milk Paint in Schloss & Ironstone

I am still amazed that regardless of how beaten up and bruised wood can get that it still can come up looking so beautiful (after a little hard work of course).

Colour Saturated Life | Painted Dresser Before & After using Miss Mustard Seed Milk Paint in Schloss & Ironstone

Colour Saturated Life | Painted Dresser Before & After using Miss Mustard Seed Milk Paint in Schloss & Ironstone

Colour Saturated Life | Painted Dresser Before & After using Miss Mustard Seed Milk Paint in Schloss & Ironstone

Colour Saturated Life | Painted Dresser Before & After using Miss Mustard Seed Milk Paint in Schloss & Ironstone

Colour Saturated Life | Painted Furniture with Miss Mustard Seed Milk Paint

She’s not perfect, she still shows her age and scars remain of her previous life but I think now she is ready to be loved again….there is life in this old girl yet. What do you think?

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Compensation for this post was made by D.Lawless Hardware but all opinions expressed here are my own.

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I know I said I loved my makeover of the French Provincial Sideboard……but this one has got that beat. WhenView full post »

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This is the first piece of a matching set I made over. With this piece I had to cut some excess wood off the top fromView full post »

I PARTY HERE!

  • Non-Toxic DIYing with Milk Paint? - September 16, 2016 - 5:02 pm

    […] Two Toned Dresser […]ReplyCancel

  • Denise - April 4, 2016 - 11:43 pm

    OMGosh Gilly… I love this buffet makeover. Beautiful work! ~ DeniseReplyCancel

  • Terry - February 17, 2016 - 1:15 am

    Gilly this piece is absolutely stunning! Your hard work really shows and the quality of your work really stands out! Your color choices are perfect! Well done 🙂 I hope you have a wonderful week!
    Smiles!
    TerryReplyCancel

  • Jo-Anne - January 20, 2016 - 12:04 pm

    hello, are you in the US? I’m in Australia and have inherited this exact dresser! it was stored in a shed with dirt floor for 30 years and had extensive damage to it’s feet, which had all separated and one piece of carving on a drawer had fallen off. I had the carving reproduced and fixed all the other damaged pieces myself. oh – the mirror was chucked to the tip (rubbish dump) by my brother before I could claim it, it was gone an hour later when we went to retrieve it! I’ve added a magazine rack shelf at the bottom, made from a cot side. interesting to see the same unit. mine was owned by my great grandmother and I think comes from early 1900’s – 1920? great to see another one ‘done up’.ReplyCancel

    • Gilly - January 22, 2016 - 10:15 pm

      Hi Jo-Anne – I am an Aussie blog so I am in Australia too! So excited to find someone with the same dresser! Thanks for stopping by! GillyReplyCancel

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  • Brag Worthy Thursday-4 - November 6, 2015 - 2:14 am

    […] Colour Saturated Life:  Two Tone Dresser Makeover […]ReplyCancel

  • Cynthia - Clockwork Interiors - November 5, 2015 - 9:44 pm

    What a beautiful transformation, Gilly! Your buffet would look just perfect in my dining room — wish I was local! Take care, CynthiaReplyCancel

    • Gilly - November 17, 2015 - 10:43 am

      Haha! You may have to move here! Thanks CynthiaReplyCancel

  • Designing Vibes - November 5, 2015 - 9:15 pm

    This is a beautifully executed furniture transformation! Thanks for sharing!ReplyCancel

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  • […] Saturated Life: Two Tone Dresser Makeover – Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | […]ReplyCancel

  • Vikki - November 4, 2015 - 5:19 am

    You’ve done a great job! I would buy that in an everlovin’ minute!!ReplyCancel

  • Gracie Redfield - November 3, 2015 - 10:37 am

    Absolutely gorgeous! I am happy that you enjoy taking these orphaned pieces and giving them new life.ReplyCancel

  • Carol @ The Red Painted Cottage - November 3, 2015 - 10:00 am

    It’s stunning and in my opinion, perfect!ReplyCancel

  • Ardith - November 3, 2015 - 9:46 am

    Be still my heart. What a breathtaking refurbishment and makeover. Cheers to you, ArdithReplyCancel

    • Gilly - November 17, 2015 - 10:52 am

      Thanks you so much Ardith! You are too sweet!ReplyCancel

  • Sally - November 3, 2015 - 9:36 am

    This piece is beautiful! I love the stain on top and the paint colors are perfect for this. You really aced this one. Great job?ReplyCancel

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