The dresser project: let there be light!

I am happy to report that one item on my project list has been checked off.  The new school year filled me with energy and enthusiasm, and one day I found a drop cloth, took out the drawers on my big dark dresser/toy cabinet, and got busy.  No time like the present, right?  I sanded it all down with my rotary sander and by hand, and removed the hardware.  There was a LOT of hardware.  Each drawer actually had four separate pieces, and they were screwed and nailed down.  This thing was built to last!
I then primed it with STIX Bonding Primer, using a 2-inch angled brush and a "velvet nap" mini roller. I wasn't messing around.

My biggest hurdle was choosing the colour - I am not what they call "decisive."  I got so many great suggestions from you guys and on Twitter, and really dithered about this.  My poor Para colour deck got quite a workout.  Finally, I went with my gut and chose a creamy white - Desert Sand to be exact.  I dug out my coupon for a free gallon of Para Ultra paint that I got at Blog Podium (thank you Para and Blog Podium!) and headed to the local paint store in the Junction.  I have to say, I normally just whip up to Home Depot and choose the cheapest paint I can get.  Having this certificate forced me to find a Para paint distributor, which happily was West Toronto Paint.  I had the best service, loved supporting a local store, and don't think I will be going anywhere else for paint any time soon!  They gave me great advice on how to go about it: many thin coats ("as thin as you can get") with a light sanding in between.  This is quite a departure from my usual glob it on thick to avoid too many coats.  And sanding in between? Yeah, right. 
This new-found high standard approach made for a lovely smooth finish, and many many days of chaos.  Also, I became a little obsessive about it, constantly feeling for any drips, bumps, or nicks.  Did I mention this baby is seven feet long and has nine drawers??
So you can imagine my dismay when I put it all back together and the doors in the centre wouldn't close.  I took them off again and laboriously scrapped off all my meticulously-applied paint from behind the hinges, and on the doors.  I have managed to jam them together, but can't quite figure out why they won't close.  My mum suggested that maybe the moisture from the paint swelled the wood itself?  Argh.  Double Argh.

Whatever - moving on.  Maybe I will eventually plane them and repaint. (As if...)  I put the half the hardware back on, after polishing it all up.  The original drawer face configuration just seemed too heavy on the lighter background.  Plus, I didn't want to cover up all my hard work!  I also left the three middle drawers (behind the doors) as they were.  Call it strategic, call it laziness.  I like it.

The result pretty much rocks my world.  SO much brighter and lighter in there!  You may have noticed I also moved the dark brown sofa from there and switched it out with the little blue one.  I am thinking of adding another project to the list - recover the blue sofa!  I do like the smaller size and lower back as it also helps open the place up.  So there you have it.  Dresser = Done. You like?


PS. Can you spot Cam in the after photo?  :D
PPS. All the lovely arrows I had so much fun using in Photoshop were a free download from the ever-amazing Ez at Creature Comforts.

15 comments:

  1. #!http://goo.gl/TmX6Q

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  2. I love it! It brightens the room.

    We had the same problem when we did our change table (buffet). We sanded the parts you don't see so every thing fit properly. Then we took wax paper and rubbed were the drawers slide (both the drawer & dresser). The wax paper keeps it from sticking and you can always reapply if you need more.

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  3. Thanks Danica! It felt kind of boring and unimaginative after all the awesome advice I got...but it is pretty much what I envisioned. :p

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  4. Love it! It looks really good with the new coat of paint and hardware Lisa! Where did you find this cabinet?

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  5. it turned out beautifully, really lightens the space!

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  6. Gorgeous! It's a great piece to begin with. Your room is beautiful.

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  7. Thanks Julia! I am amazed at the difference it made! It almost makes me want to paint everything white white white!

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  8. I actually got it on Craigslist and it is seriously HEAVY and solidly made. But it is almost like a new piece of furniture now!

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  9. Like it? I love it! I know how time-consuming and tedious painting a piece like this can be - kudos! Love the colour you chose - can never go wrong with a creamy white.

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  10. Rosa @ FlutterFlutterSeptember 13, 2012 at 11:57 PM

    Wow! What an amazing transformation. I adore that dresser!!

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  11. Thanks Rosa! I am still kind of awed by what paint can do!

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  12. Thanks Vanessa! I do love me a creamy white - I know I could have made it more exciting, but I am just a neutral kind of gal... :D

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  13. Sounds like a lot of work but looks like it was worth it!

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Thank you so much for your comment - they always make my day!