3 years ago, at a garage sale, I bought an ugly dresser for $8.
I wanted it because I needed something to store the kids’ memorabilia waiting to be scrapbooked, and I didn’t want to pay $20 for a cheap, flimsy Rubbermaid set of drawers. The dresser was good and sturdy, but it had a very scarred finish.
My original plan was to get it painted in time for the move to my new office, but I had a baby, and life got in the way, so for 3 years it sat. Until last weekend, when I made a quick trip to Home Depot, grabbed a few cans of spray paint in a color that I thought would look good with my new desk, and went home to start painting (I wish I could say that I typically put more thought into these things, but sadly, I don’t. Then, when my plan doesn’t work out, I get mad and quit).
As you know, I’m a big fan of paint (of paint. Not of painting) because I think a fresh coat of paint can really transform, well…anything. I’ve painted lots of garage sale finds – furniture, cabinets, picture frames, even my napkin holder (which was free!) – and I’m always happy with the results. Sadly, in typical Heather-fashion, I forgot to take a picture of this dresser before I dismantled it for painting, but I did take pictures of the process, at least. This wouldn’t have been a problem if I were more patient, but patience doesn’t happen to be a virtue of mine.
So, here are the pieces, waiting for paint:
I started with a light sanding in the same direction as the wood grain,
then I cleaned the pieces really well with this auto-body solvent that my husband likes, to remove any oils or dust left behind.
Next, a coat of flat red primer (because red is closest to brown),
and 3 light coats of Rustoleum gloss paint in Kona Brown.
I painted the handles with some bronze metallic paint, leftover from my living room makeover. The finished product:
Even my husband, who never wants to paint wood (why? What do men have against painting wood?), LOVES this dresser, and has commented several times on it. And it’s an excellent compliment to my desk!
Total cost of the project, including the cost of the dresser – approximately $20.
This project illustrates what I consider to be an essential part of frugal life – slightly unconventional thinking. Dressers don’t have to be just for clothes – they can store ANYTHING! If I hadn’t been willing to consider this dresser as a possible solution to my office storage problem, I would have just passed it up, and that would be a shame, because it sure is a lot prettier than a lump of Rubbermaid plastic.[print-me/]