Mini Dresser Make Over

I’ve been searching for a simple, affordable, MCM style wooden dresser for several months.  Various thrift stores and very few options.  Until last week, when I spotted a five foot dresser for $50 and a matching mini dresser for 25 bucks.  This dresser is for the tiny library/guest room which makes the nightstand size perfect.

Mini-Dresser-Before

Clean lines, MCM style, in good condition (a few scratches and a laminate top).  Perfection.  I could have left it as is, but I knew it could be better.  Refinishing to the rescue.  The dresser is plywood with a thin wood veneer.  For solid wood I prefer to sand the surface to prepare for stain.  But, I worried I’d sand through the veneer.  Despite my last paint stripper experience, I decided to use Citristrip on the drawer fronts, sides, and legs.

Mini-Dresser-Stripper

While it did its magic, we hit up the hardware store for a plastic scraper, a sample of Ben Moore paint, and came back to get started.  It seemed ready.

Mini-Dresser-Stripper-on-Drawer

Scraping most of it off was quick, leaving me with a pile of spaghetti like stuff.  The round legs took a little more time, but the finish came off cleanly.

Mini-Dresser-Legs-Strip

With the scraping done, I used an old rag and odorless mineral spirits to clean off the residue.  Which didn’t work.  Instead it just made a gummy, tacky mess.  I let it dry, then used 220 grit sand paper on the laminate top and flat sides.

Mini-Dresser-Sanded-Top

The darker patches are from the stripper.

Mini-Dresser-Side-Sanded

Lesson learned, skip the paint stripper, Amanda.  It might work, but the clean up is more than I’m willing to deal with.  But, I was able to start staining.  Dark wood floats my boat.  Wait, that didn’t come out right.  I had a can of Dark Walnut stain (left over from a bookshelf I refinished a few years ago).  Two coats on the fronts, sides, and legs.  But I had to paint the drawer edges and sides to hide the layered plywood that before were painted dark brown.

Mini-Dresser-Primed-edge

To protect my freshly stained sides, I taped off everything so I could prime and paint the laminate top and drawer dividers.

Mini-Dresser-Primed-Top

A few coats of paint on the primed spots followed by two coats of satin polyurethane gave a nice shine, protecting and enhancing.  Come back tomorrow to see how it turned out.  Yes, I’m a total tease, but I’ve got to take pictures still.

4 thoughts on “Mini Dresser Make Over

  1. can’t wait to see how it turns out!! Looks great so far! I like the nice clean lines. Rehabbing thrifted furniture is a lot of fun, it’s so neat to see the natural wood grain & color hiding underneath the layers:) I refinished a little wooden phone table with a drawer that I found in my parent’s cellar years ago; it was painted red from when it belonged to my grandfather, and as I stripped the layers off (I used the citrus stuff as well!), I found a layer of black paint underneath, and stain under that! It’s now the color of its original wood and we have it sitting just outside the kitchen, as a plant stand. I love projects like that!:)

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