How to Makeover an Old Dresser and Paint To Look Like Wood

Furniture and Cabinetry Redouxs, Tutorials

How to Makeover an Old Dresser and Paint To Look Like Wood

Tall Wood Dresser with Faux Wood Stain from Paint

Finding an Old Dresser to Makeover

Have you ever looked at an old dresser you wanted to makeover but had so many problems that you just decided to pass it by? That was the situation with the current dresser I am sharing. The problem was that I got it for about $10 on FB Marketplace. It came with such a beautiful story, and I couldn’t stand the thought of its story ending by ending up in a landfill.

Tall Old Wood Dresser with peeling veneer peeling paint

I knew I wanted a stained top, but the existing top was damaged, so that would not be possible. The next best solution was to create a Finish with DIY Paint to look like wood. You can see another example of this finish in this popular post 

Sage Green Empire Dresser REdoux

Here’s the story: I saw a gorgeous dresser on sale on Marketplace and messaged the seller. The dresser was no longer available, but would I be interested in two others for cheap? YES, I WOULD.

I met the seller, a lovely woman clearing out her mother’s home, who had recently passed. When I shared with her my love for restoring and making over old furniture, her eyes lit up. She wanted someone to rescue this dresser and its sister piece, which I will share soon.

How To Choose a Finish for Your Old Dresser Makeover

This piece had peeling veneer, a significantly damaged top, one of the curved ball legs was completely missing, the paint was half peeled off, one of the drawers needed repairing, and more. Sigh.

Tall Wood Dresser with stripped paint Redoux

The dresser is stripped of paint, but half of the peeling veneer is still on one side. It also needs many repairs and Bondo.

It sat in my garage for months before I mustered the courage to tackle it. I decided to make some basic changes, take off the front wood moldings because they were already damaged, strip it, and something had to be done about the carved ball foot.

With a few YouTube searches, I learned how to create a new carved ball foot from Moulding Putty; this was so easy to use! I only used about 1/3 of it, which will be useful for future projects. I made one using Bondo, which I also used to fill in many gashes and gaps that appeared after I got “the stuck like concrete” peeling veneer off.

Make a new ball foot with bondo and molding putty redoux

I created a YouTube Video you can watch to see the entire Old Dresser Makeover with How to Make Paint Look Like Wood

Choosing the right DIY Paint color for your Furniture Makeover

I went through a few different colors on this dresser makeover before finally settling on one I liked. I used a combination of three different DIY Paints: Prairie Grey, Faded Burlap, and Tarnished Pearl. DIY Paint is plastic-free, acrylic-free, anything fake-free, no latex, nothing but 100% natural pigments, and the only paint on the market with an actual clay base. Because of the way DIY Paint is made, it is the perfect paint to blend with; you can reactivate it with water and create gorgeous finishes that are infinite in color combinations.




Once I had the right colors, I focused on the stop and the trim. I used my tried-and-true Paint That Looks Like Wood Method: one coat of DIY Paint in Layered Chocolate, one coat of Clear Liquid Patina Top Coat, and one thin, lightly brushed-on coat of Dark and Decrepit Patina.

Faux Wood Stain with Paint Redoux

If you want to learn even more faux wood finish ideas, please check out my post, “How to Make Anything Look Like Real Wood.”

Tall Wood Dresser with diy Paint blended and Faux Wood Stain How to use paint to look like wood

After I finished the top, I put the hardware back on, took some pictures, and put her up for sale! I am proud of my Old Dresser Makeover with Paint That Looks Like Wood!

Tall Wood Dresser with diy Paint blended and Faux Wood Stain How to use paint to look like wood Redoux

Do you have questions about creating a faux wood stain or paint that looks like a wood finish, or do you want to share your thoughts? Please leave me a comment; I would love to hear from you!


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