Paint a Child's Dresser

Introduction: Paint a Child's Dresser

I wish I had the presence of mind to take a "before" photo - this dresser, which has been in our house forever, was painted white, and was dullsville... My wife was ready to send it to the curb. However, it was made of real wood, and a replacement from IKEA would cost much more than the cost of paint. If I didn't replace the knobs with fancy satin chrome knobs, I would have spent about $35 on paint and supplies.

But even without photos, this instructable is dead simple. It only took me one afternoon, plus one day to let the paint cure.

Project Parts:
- 1 quart of purple paint (ask your paint seller what type of paint to use for furniture)

- a couple of cans of spray paint in various colors

- 1 short paint roller and paint tray

- some disposable foam brushes

- some fine grit sand paper

- some paper towels

So, here is how I did it:

Pick a sunny day that isn't too humid,and disassemble the dresser - take the drawers out, and remove the knobs.

1) Lightly sand the dresser with fine grit sandpaper, and then wiped it down with a damp paper towel to get the dust off it. Make sure it's dry before you start painting.

2) Using a small roller, I applied the purple paint to the body of the dresser, using a small brush to touch up the parts the roller couldn't reach. Giving it an hour to dry, I gave it another coat. Done!

3) While the dresser was drying, I did the drawers - only this time I used spray paint. USE GOOD SPRAYPAINT TECHNIQUE - that is, lightly dust the drawer with paint from about 12 inches away, and give it a couple of minutes to dry. The first few coats won't completely cover the surface - that's exactly what you want. Multiple passes using this technique will result in even color, and a nice smooth finish. I think I put 4 or 5 passes on each drawer.

Too much paint applied at a time will cause runs and streaks in the paint, and will give the surface a kind of orange peel texture - don't do this! If it does happen, you have to wait for it to dry, then sand it off, and paint it again! So work slowly and patiently - it will pay off! Remember: the lighter your paint coats, the faster it will dry.

If you do one pass per drawer, and then move on to the next drawer, by the time you have finished the last one, the first one is ready for another coat. It was a dry and sunny day when I did these - it only took 15-20 minutes of drying between coats.

4) Give the whole project 24 hours to cure before reassembling. Resist poking at it until then

5) If you're fancy like me, get a set of shiny new chrome knobs to put on the drawers.

6) Admire your handiwork. Let others admire your handiwork. Make an instructable. Vow to take more pictures next time.

My kid was thrilled to have a "new" dresser in bright friendly colors, then end result is unique, and I saved a tiny fortune. Repainting old furniture is about the easiest thing on Earth.

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    3 Discussions


    Reply 5 years ago on Introduction

    Thank you! I'm kicking myself now for not taking a before picture!