HOME IMPROVEMENT on a BUDGET

Finally – The FREE Dresser is Complete!

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The FREE Craigslist Dresser!

I am a Craigslist stalker.  Really – I am obsessed,  People give away the BEST stuff!  If I only had a truck….  (My son will soon be 16…guess who’s getting a truck so he can help his mom pick up Craigslist freebies and go “yard saling” on trash day!

This lovely dresser was up no more than a few minutes when I saw it.  I immediately emailed the poor man – about 5 times – begging him to keep it for me.  He was so sweet!

This dresser was actual wood!  I have to say, many of my male friends told me NOT to paint it – what is it with men and not painting wood?  So weird.  Here is the “before”:

dresser

Not a bad piece of furniture!  It was missing a few pulls which is no big deal.  It is actually pretty, but honey pine is not my taste right now.  So, to go well in the new dining room where it was destined to live as a buffet table, I decided to paint it black and do a little light distressing.

Now, I have to be honest, I did not prime.  I DID sand. But I don’t like the primer showing later when I am distressing.  So, I just resigned myself to a few extra coats….

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My little power sander by Black and Decker – I love it!  Although, I did find that just sanding by hand was more effective after the paint was on….but before, this is the way to go!

Time to gather the paint!  I just trust Rustoleum.  So, I went with the flat black in both the furniture and the spray paint.

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Now, to the painting!

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Notice the super professional paint tray….an old plastic tub I found in the garage….I was NOT going back to Home Depot again!!!   I used a foam roller for most everything, then a chip brush to get into the nooks and crannies….

Of course, I decided to do this on the 3 hottest days we have had this summer in NC.  Mind you, it has been a very mild summer – I just chose the only 2 extremely hot days to paint.  So I had to also use a towel I found on the floor of my garage to wipe the sweat off of my face because it kept dripping onto my pretty painted surfaces!  Grrrr

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Trusty towel…smelled a little funny, but it did the job!

photo(53)LOVE my fan…not only did it help to keep me cool, it also shooed away the mosquitoes that are OUT OF HAND this summer!

Lots of painting in the hot, hot sun….

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Unfortunately, because I am horribly impatient, I did not sand between each coat.  BIG MISTAKE.  There is a reason EVERYONE says to sand between coats….for instance, these weird little bubbly spots that showed up on several of the drawers….             photo(25)

SO upsetting!  Thus, I went to sanding….and realized that using my power sander is a bad idea when the paint is probably not as dry as it should be and the humidity is around 189% and it is HOT.  The heat from the sander and the heat from the sum beating down on the black paint kind of melted the paint all over the little sanding pad.  So, I just sanded by hand, which was not that hard and really allowed me to feel the imperfections that I was trying to grind to smooth.

Once I had sanded and painted again, I allowed it to completely dry for 24 hours.  Then, to make a lovely distressed look on the edges (just like the black furniture I love in Hobby Lobby), I used my power sander to sand along the edges of each drawer and the top of the dresser.  I then carefully went over it by hand to smooth down any rough edges that were created.  Finally, I dipped a well folded paper towel into some stain and went to work rubbing all of the exposed wood.

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What I found, though, as I wiped it off, was that I really liked the patina (does that word work there?) that it created on the black.  So, I rubbed the entire dresser – painted and exposed, with the stain.  Not all at one time, of course….just bit by bit so it could be rubbed off quickly.   I LOVED how it toned down the black.

Finally, I had to protect it…plus it was all tacky from the stain.  This apparently grossed out my 15 year old man child who acted like someone had sneezed on his hands when he was helping me move the dresser….geez.

I did not want any shine on the dresser, so I decided to use some of my Annie Sloan wax.  I recently had painted an armoire white and had the wax left over.  (OK…not left over – I never got around to waxing the armoire…)

annie wax

Anyway, I got a glob of it in the cheesecloth and began rubbing the drawers.  However, the drawers, being black and sitting in the hot sun, were HOT.  And of course, they melted the wax immediately.  Basically, it was like spreading butter on a hot pan….but, I went with it.  I buttered each of the drawers, then wiped them with a soft cloth.  Then I did the same to the dresser.  The dresser however, was partially in the shade, which made the wax work like it should, which made it really hard to buff!  So, I had my man child boy help me move it into the sun to melt.  Seriously….I did this.

Now, I am not saying I have discover a totally new way to wax with Annie Sloan wax….I’m not saying it may be just as easy to melt the wax and wipe it on and off…but I am definitely going to use this method from now on!  I did it 2 times on the front and on the drawers, and 3 times on the top. It is well protected!  Who would have thought!

So, I moved the whole mess into the dining room to cure.  I did not want to knock it around trying to put on pulls or shoving the drawers back….

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While that cured, I spray painted the pulls….I love spray painting…so fun…and such quick results for so little effort….

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When I went to put all the pulls back, I realized the paint made what was already a tight fit virtually impossible.  UGH!  This is where I told my son, who was helping, the rule of DIY.  It will take 3 times longer than you plan and cost 3 times more than you thought.   But, my happy power drill saved the day.

If you are planning on doing any DIY stuff, you will want a power drill and a bit set.  You will feel soooo manly and powerful when you use the drill bits…..trust me….

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I think the dril is Black and Decker and the drill bits are DeWalt.  This little kit has served me well.  Beyond this, you may have to buy some larger bits, but since you will mainly use these, this little kit is perfect.

Well, after drilling the holes a teeny bit bigger, I reattached the pulls…looking good!

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Remember the few pulls that were missing.  Well, I headed to Home Depot and bought 4 pulls for $1.58 each!  Right?!  So cheap!  They were a kind of goldish color, but a little spray paint and they looked like they belonged with the rest!

photo(45)I like how it looks like it’s smiling at me!

Even Mr. Jingles likes the new buffet!

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Finally, all the pulls are on and all the drawers are in!  I hung the word art I made and set out the knick knacks and a few little lamps….and TADA!  Done!

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Total cost….for paint, spray paint, sandpaper, and extra pulls…..about $45.00!  Worth every penny!

6 thoughts on “Finally – The FREE Dresser is Complete!

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