May 1, 2016

DIY: Dresser Makeover

DIY Dresser A

When it comes to your baby’s room, it may seem to be the easiest room to decorate. There are, after all few design opinions coming from the tiny occupant, and as the parent, you get to design the room to your exact specifications. While for many, this ensures a no-brainer, done-deal project, there are those who need more information about the occupant in order to personalize their space.

I am in the latter group. For three years, Zoe’s room sat bare with the only décor being a coat of paint, a hand-me-down crib, a pink-and-white area rug and a ubiquitous white 6-drawer dresser. From the start, I was hesitant to impose my personal decorating ideas and essentially force her to live in a room that may not suit her personality.

After a handful of years, I know her much better and despite the fact she hasn’t exhibited any of her own color preferences, I can no longer starve her - or myself - of the visual delights of decorating.

First up, heading to Spoonflower for one-of-a-kind selection of wallpaper. Be forewarned, there are thousands of patterns and colors to choose from. The best strategy: find a favorite designer and stick with them.

DIY Dresser B

(Above) I chose Holli Zollinger and ordered five samples. Choose from smooth or woven texture, and water-activated or peel-and-stick. I ordered the samples in all the forms to feel the weight of the paper, and to determine which would be easier to apply.

DIY Dresser C

(Above) Holli Zollinger’s “Atrium Veranda Garden” woven wallpaper, #3856775 from Spoonflower. It comes in 2’ x 12’ rolls. The dresser was less than 5’ tall but you’ll need wiggle room for correct placement and any mistakes. The materials: cutting mat, Exacto knife, pencil, ruler and measuring tape. The roll comes with a squeegee to push out any air bubbles as you apply the paper.

DIY Dresser D

(Above) I chose the woven texture peel-and-stick. The paper has a heavier hand, rougher surface and is repositionable.

DIY Dresser E

(Above) Here, half the dresser is completed. Wipe down the dresser face and remove knobs. Measure the face of the dresser face down on the paper underside. I left an extra inch on the top and bottom because it’s better to cut too long than too short. Trim off the extra or curve it under the drawer.

DIY Dresser F

(Above) A 2’ width roll will get you only half way across the dresser front. Now begins the lining up and meticulous matching up of the seams. Once you’ve identified the general area of the perfect seaming, leave about 2” extra to begin slicing off thin strips until your pattern matches up.

DIY Dresser G

(Above) Here: tiny slice by tiny slice until it’s a perfect seam.

DIY Dresser H

(Above) Perfect!

DIY Dresser I

(Above) We’re on our way!

DIY Dresser J

(Above) After all the paper was applied, the next step was to give the dresser a finish worthy of an antique-y look. Annie Sloan’s Chalk Paint is a decorative paint that is applied without the need to sand or prime the surface. A little goes a long way. I painted the top, sides and front frame in two coats with this sample pot. I bought her brush and clear wax finish. The wax was suppose to dry clear but it dried slightly darker, so I stopped because that wasn’t what I wanted.

DIY Dresser K

(Above) The sides of the drawers also got a little lipstick. The material was raw wood, however so I applied a coat of shellac first. Here, Annie Sloan’s Scandinavian Pink.

DIY Dresser L

(Above) The Distorted Faceted clear knobs from Anthropologie were the finishing touch!

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