Layered look Dresser

After a week long break, I am back and ready to share.  November was a busy month at Paris Flea Market!  Good thing I had just picked up this dresser Saturday before the sale!

I hadn’t planned on needing it so early in the sale, but I sold a few big pieces the first night!  Thursday evening and Friday morning I worked fast to give this piece a makeover.

Thanks to CeCe Caldwell’s paints, which are SO easy to use, I was able to give it a unique “old” look, in about the time it takes to iron the pile of clothes in my laundry room (which is a subject for another day…….).  Probably two hours at the most and I was done.

All the hardware was removed, and I gave the piece a thorough sanding on the top to smooth out some of the scratches.  Next I took my beloved Virginia Chestnut and watered it down until it was very thin and spreadable.  I covered the entire piece and drawers.  This paint dries so fast too that by the time you are finishing up the last part of your piece, it will almost be time to start on the next layer.  TRUE!  You can create a fabulous furniture makeover in less than an hour.  No priming, no sanding (unless you had deep scratches), just start painting.

I used Young Kansas Wheat for the main color and painted a thin coat of this all over the piece.  When this was dry, I sanded the entire thing with 320 grit paper.  This burnishes the paint, and gives you a perfectly, glass-smooth surface.  I wanted the Virginia Chestnut to show through, so I did this two ways.  First, by using a damp cloth and just gently rubbing the edges.  You can distress this paint by rubbing it!  Then I finished with a 220 grit for more distressing.  I sealed the piece using Clear Wax and some dark Aging Wax.  I also darkened the handles by using my favorite Coffee Bean Colorant by Modern Masters.

Look at how beautiful layering CeCe Caldwell’s paints can be.  And the aging the wax gives it yet one more dimension.  This piece sold Saturday!


Feels good to be back.  Can’t wait to show you my amazing Junque Makeover tomorrow.  You won’t believe what I did with an old kitchen cabinet.

Linking my layered look at these lovely blogs:

DIY Show Off

Tutorials and Tips


The Shabby Nest

Furniture Feature FridaysStuff and NonsenseToo Much Time On My HandsFunky Junk's Saturday Nite SpecialUndertheTableandDreamingIt's OVerflowingIvy and Elephants






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  1. says

    I freakin love this piece..Love the layered lok…but I just have one question….YOU IRON? LOL
    How in the heck do you find time for THAT…:)

  2. says

    That is so pretty! I can’t believe you did it that quickly!
    You iron??? I used to iron, way back when. I do have an iron. I use it when I sew. Ah, that is not very often, either. Why would one iron, or sew, when there are so many unwanted, neglected, abandoned pieces of furniture crying out for help? See, here is my method of clothes management: Take the clothes out of the basket, and set it near the dryer. When you need a piece, toss it in the dryer for a few seconds, then put it on right away. No wrinkles!
    (My environmentally-conscious, obsessive/complusive daughter, (who does iron,) insists this is a waste of electricity, but I figure it doesn’t take any more energy than heating the iron and ironing. And it saves my energy for the poor furniture. )

  3. Nina says

    So bummed I will miss how you layer using Virginia brown. I will put this technique on my to do list. However still trying to get the hang of using the aging wax.

  4. says

    It’s GORGEOUS Karen! I can see why it sold right away. I wish you could see my face right now because my jaw dropped when I saw your picture. I pulled the same two colors to use on the armoire I’m doing next week! It’s literally stacked inside with the hardware removed patiently waiting it’s turn. I can’t wait to do it!! LOVE how your dresser turned out, that’s just how I’m imagining it to be!!! Wish we were neighbors!! ps – it’s SNOWING

  5. says

    LOVE LOVE LOVE! Such a pretty finish Karen, what a transformation… I’ve got a piece 1/2 started with this combo as well – a low wide (heavy) habersham buffet – I dont know if i’ll ever finish it, it’s got the VC on and one door with Young Wheat (and I think a little Seattle Mist) but it’s become the perfect dumping ground for collecting stuff on top… your piece is going to prompt me to get her done!

  6. carrie says

    I love this dresser! Did you layer the clear wax and then do the darker wax? Or did you mix them together?

  7. nancy says

    This is beautiful! I chose similar colors but am not getting that effect. I may have to try CeCe’s paints.

    What is the lighter gray color you used? You mention only Virginia Chestnuts and Kansas Wheat.

    Hope you have other projects to show!

  8. says

    That is a great tip especially to those fresh to the
    blogosphere. Simple but very accurate info… Appreciate
    your sharing this one. A must read post!


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