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  • alittlebitoflangley

Desk and Dresser Makeover

Hey everyone! To start this post off I just want to say that I am in NO way an expert on redoing furniture. This was actually my first time redoing things although, I have wanted to for a long time I just haven't had the space.

We just moved into a new house and need lots of furniture, but that's expensive. The dresser was one we already had, but definitely needed a makeover and I wanted it to match the desk. The desk I got for FREE on facebook marketplace! You can really find deals you just have to look. I have a tendency to become obsessive over things lol, so I spend a lot of time looking for deals.

These are the before pictures of both the pieces.

Picking the Type and Color of paint

The first thing I had to do was decide what color to paint them and what type of paint to use. I did some research on what paint I could use that didn't need to be finished, because I really didn't want to have that extra step. I also didn't want to use chalk paint not for a particular reason. I read online that Valspar Cabinet Enamel paint didn't require a topcoat, so that's what I went with. Now it was time to pick the color and I knew I wanted white, but who knew there could be so many choices for white paint. After some more research I chose Promenade by Valspar. I read that Promenade went well with other white paints and I knew that I wanted to paint our bedroom walls white, so that's why I went with this color. It comes in satin or semi-gloss finish, but I got semi-gloss because it's easier to clean.

Prepping the Furniture

I know that this is a step that a lot of people want to skip. If you really don't care that much then you can skip it, but prep is what makes the paint last. First I took off all of the hardware on both pieces.

The dresser was in pretty good shape and had minimal chipping of the previously applied paint. I lightly sanded the dresser with an electric sander with 240 grit sand paper (the higher the number on the sandpaper the less abrasive it will be on the wood). I ordered extra sandpaper for the sander linked here. Once I was finished sanding I took a tack cloth and wiped it down to get all of the sander dust off. Then I took a nonstick cloth and Krud Kutter and cleaned it. Now it was ready to be painted.

The desk/vanity was another story. The paint job done previously was not done well at all and the wood was chipping off in some places. I tried sanding the paint off, but it just wasn't coming off. I eventually had to go but some chemical paint stripper gel. This stuff is super strong and you definitely need to wear gloves, a mask and something to protect your eyes. You basically spread this gunk all over with a paint brush and it burns up the paint to the surface. Once you leave it on for however long you want you can scrape it off with a paint scraper. This step is very very messy so make sure you have rags and a trash bag. Another tip is to use a plastic paint scraper, so it's not as harsh on the wood. I had to apply this to certain spots more than once to get all of the paint off and I still didn't get it off in every single place because some of the spots were just too difficult to get to. After hours of trying to get all of the paint off I used mineral spirits or you can use paint thinner to get all of the left over residue from the gel stripper off. I was finally ready to lightly sand it at this point with my electric sander and 180-240 grit sandpaper if you do a lower grit it may gouge the wood depending on how soft it is. Next I wiped it down with a tack cloth and then cleaned it with Krud Kutter.

This is what the desk looked like after I stripped most of the paint off. Some of it just wasn't goin anywhere so I just sanded over it and started painting.

Painting the Furniture

So finally it was now time to paint. First I put both of the pieces up on these stands. I am so glad I bought these because it helps you get underneath and around the edges. They also work well if you need to flip something over and are unable to put it on the floor yet.

To paint I used this paint spray gun that I bought off of amazon. I really liked using it, but it was definitely a learning experience. If you do use a spray gun make sure you buy paint thinner to mix with it as well. Regular paint is too thick to be sprayed so you have to mix it with paint thinner to thin it out. This was something I didn't know and had to go back to the store to get. You can also buy paint sprayer cleaner at the store to clean the gun when you are done. I picked some of that up too. Tips for using the sprayer: In between uses make sure you clean it very well and that the nozzle isn't clogged or this will cause it to spit clumps AND make sure you fill the pot up all the way even if you think that you aren't going to use that much paint. You don't want it to get too low or that will cause it to spit as well (I learned all of this the hard way haha). This may be obvious, but make sure you don't spray too much in one spot because it will run and it's easy to accidentally do! I really liked the finish from using the paint sprayer! You don't have to worry about brush strokes which is nice.

For the dresser I only had to do one coat I think that was because it had already been painted white underneath. I let it sit for 3 days and put the hardware on and brought it inside. For the desk/vanity I ended up having to do 2 coats. I could still see the dark wood peaking out from underneath. After the second coat I let it sit for 3 days, put the new hardware on and moved it back inside.

Here are the final products! They aren't perfect, but I think they turned out pretty well for my first time painting furniture!

The hardware for the dresser is linked here and the desk/vanity is linked here. I got the same brand so the colors would match! I thought about ordering more expensive hardware, but couldn't justify spending that much when the point was to save money. Amazon has such good prices on hardware, so that's what I settled on and it still looks great! Overall this took about a week to do.

Well that's all I got for ya! Like I said before I'm not a pro, but I learned a TON while doing this.

Thanks for reading!

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