Friday, October 17, 2014

What Would Grandpa Think of His Hand Built 1920's Chest Of Drawers Being Painted?

Yesterday I came across this beautiful dresser by Modern Vintage .  Soon as I seen it I knew I had the perfect piece to do a similar treatment to.

If you would like to see more pictures of this beautiful dresser follow this link.  While you are there check out their other beautiful pieces.  Modern Vintage used General Finishes Java Gel Stain for the dark parts and General Finishes Milk Paint for the rest.

Now on to the piece that I plan to do using this as my inspiration.  My mother passed away August the second of this year and we want her house to be a place all her children and grandchildren can still call home.  We don't want to make it a shrine but instead a place we all know we will always be welcome  just like when she was alive.  I am making her bedroom into a home office and have removed all of her furniture except for one special piece.  It is a five drawer chest that her father and her grandfather built in probably 1919 or 1920.  It has some similar details to this inspiration piece.

You can see from the picture that this is a very old chest of drawers and it is need of some tender loving care.  The original pulls are gone and have been as long as I can remember, it looks like they just replaced them with what ever they had on hand.  A couple of the drawers need a simple fix but all in all it is a solid piece of furniture and should last for many more years.

The top has seen a lot of wear and tear which the dark Java Gel Stain should hide. General Finishes Gel Stain does not require it be sanded to the bare wood, it only needs a very light sanding.  I found some very good YouTube videos explaining in great detail how to use this product.  In my area there are limited places to purchase General Finishes product so I will be ordering it online.  If you go to their website you will be able to do a search for places in your area. The following are two of the videos that helped me decide that this is a product I can't wait to try.


In the inspirational piece they used Milk Paint and even though I love their finish I plan to use Annie Sloan Chalk Paint.  I am going to mix two colors together to create a special blue/green color.  I have not tried my formula out except on an online mixing tool.  I am going to try two parts Duck Egg Blue and one part Aubusson Blue. I only have the Duck Egg Blue on hand so I will have to wait until I can order the Aubusson Blue. Of course the formula may change after I start playing with the real paint.  I used the online mixer tool on The Purple Painted Lady website.  

I will finish the chest using Annie Sloan Clear and Dark Wax. I will probably do 3 coats of wax.  You can also use the wax as a top coat on the Gel Stain.  

The mirror needs re-silvered but I have never done that and I don't think I want to mess with that at this time.  The mirror would never be used anyway so I will just add a large vase with flowers to cover that flaw.  I will also have to find pulls and or knobs for the drawers.

Here is what I have in mind for the vase of flowers.  Something vintage with blue hydrangeas (Blue was Mom's favorite color.) like the one in the tarnished teapot below from The Inspired Room.   Melissa Michaels  from The Inspired Room has a wonderful blog full of beautiful inspiration.

I can't wait to start this transformation!  My one question is, "wonder what Grandpa would think about the changes to his chest of drawers?"  When I get around to getting this done I will share the process and pictures of the finished piece.


  1. I can't wait to see the finished product!!! :)