How to Makeover a French Provincial Dresser

Furniture and Cabinetry Redouxs, Furniture Makeovers

The French Provincial Dresser

If you grew up in the 70s or 80s, chances are you had one of these dressers in your bedroom set! There are so many variations of the French Provincial Dresser. Although there were so many manufacturers of this style of furniture, they all have a few things in common that can make them tricky to makeover.

I am here to share with you how easy it is to make these over! Let’s start with the biggest hurdle. They all have this weird plastic-type finish on them. Whether it is solid wood underneath or just inexpensive MDF, the finish is solid plastic, which I am sure was put there to ensure the durability of the finish. This plastic finish can be a challenge and ake a lot of time to paint, but if you are using the right products, you can easily make one of these over in just a few hours.

This is what I started with. I got an entire set on FB Marketplace for very cheap. These pieces are often easily found on your local FB marketplace.

Gather your supplies

Thoroughly Clean

To makeover an old French Provincial Dresser you will want to make sure you have all the right supplies so I always begin by thoroughly cleaning my piece. I love this 100% natural concentrated cleaner from Humble Suds.


It’s a teeny little jar and it goes a long way. I have it highly diluted in my super fine mister bottle. I just spritz the surface and wipe clean with a Heavy Duty Shop Towel and it cuts through dirt, grease, etc.

Choose your Paint Wisely

I was a custom/contract painter for years. I made over literally hundreds of bedroom sets, dining tables, and dozens of kitchen cabinets. 90% of that time was spent in prep. The SO is not fun part. Endless hours of Priming and sanding so when I was first introduced to DIY 100% Natural Clay & Chalk Paint, it was like the heavens opened and angels sang. I am not being dramatic. It was THAT GOOD.

I went from hours to finish just one dresser to one hour to finish one dresser. NO Priming, NO sanding, no kidding. DIY Paint sticks to ANY surface. Trust me, there is not a surface I have not tried the paint on. It forms a bond (like a concrete bond) with whatever you have painted and it is nearly impossible to scratch it. There is no latex or acrylic in it, so there is no way it can chip as there is no ‘give’ and this ease of use and durability is what sets it apart from any other Chalk Type paint on the market.

Choices in DIY Paint

DIY Paint just released their new 1 step paint by Jami Ray Vintage. The new One Step Paint comes in limited Cottage/Farm House colors, but it is perfect for projects like this one when you just want all the benefits of good durable paint, don’t plan on doing a lot of blending and the topcoat is BUILT-IN.

I used the Vintage Pink. It is a gorgeous soft pink, just like you would expect to see in faded, vintage pink color.

Just like DIY Paint’s original formula, you don’t have to prime or sand before. With the French Provincial Furniture, I always say the first coat is your “base coat”. All of the colors from DIY Paint are super pigmented, so you won’t need much paint. I only did two coats of Vintage Pink, and I have almost an entire can left of the paint.

Watch the Full French Provincial Dresser Makeover here on my YouTube Channel

The Finishing Touches

You can leave your French Provincial Furniture as is when painted, or you can be like me and never “just paint” something. I always have to add a little extra and for this piece, I decided to go with an aged and gilded look. I added DIY Paint Dark & Decrepit Glaze and Some Golden Ticket to the details. I also added one of the newest IOD Transfers, “Whispering Willow” to the top drawer. It is delicate, whimsical and feminine. Just like this dresser!

The French Provincial Dresser Makeover is Done!

I hope I inspired you to take a look or look for some of that adorable French Provincial Furniture and try your hand at a Furniture Makeover yourself. If you enjoyed this post, please let me know in the comments. If you have any questions about this project, the products I used, or any other DIY questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out. I love sharing with you how to makeover your old furniture.


  1. Patty Soriano

    I’m not into pinks, but it looks spectacular on this dresser! Very nice, Karen!! Let’s see the next piece!

  2. Kaessa

    Your ideas never cease to amaze!! Awesome job and thanks for sharing!?


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