I wanted a low, wide dresser to double as a changing table in my baby’s nursery. I drove out to the middle of nowhere to buy this one for $25, only to get it home and realize it was in terrible shape, evidence of former avian tenants included.
To get over the ick factor of how insanely gross this thing was to start, I decided to do something I’ve never done before: paint the inside. I know now why I’ve never done this before. It’s a ridiculous amount of work. Like, I could have painted four dressers in the time it took me to paint the inside of just this one. But I did it.
I used the same Olympic no-VOC paint color matched to Ben Moore’s Classic Gray that I had left over from the walls. I gave it about two coats + touch ups here and there. It took me a week of working off and on whenever I had the energy and inclination.
Then there were the drawers. The drawers took a whole weekend (interspersed with plenty of breaks). I worked on them in pairs, and by the time I got to the last two I had a pretty efficient system set up. First, I’d set them back to back on top of the dresser.
Then I’d cover the outsides with a 4″ foam roller. I usually just work with a paintbrush, but I decided to treat myself this time since I had so much space to cover. The roller was a big help once I learned to load it with enough paint.
Next I’d roll the inside of one drawer, then switch to a small brush to get the corners. I like to mix up my painting apparatus to keep my hands from getting cramped.
Then onto rolling and cutting in drawer #2.
Then I’d do the whole thing over again in the same order for coat #2.
This system was great because all the pieces and parts were dry in time for coat #2 even if I didn’t stop painting for a second. I usually stopped and took a break, though.
Also, I found it helpful to roll before I cut in so I could more easily see what my paintbrush needed to cover. See how obvious it is below?
I skipped painting the backs and bottoms of the drawers because by this point things had just been dragging on for too dang long, and I knew I’d never see them. Plus I was almost out of paint. So now I have them all stacked up in a corner to wait.
The next step, obviously, is painting the outside of the dresser. I already picked up a quart of navy blue paint (Olympic’s Victory Blue). I think that it will contrast really nicely with the Classic Gray on the walls and inside the drawers.
I feel like I need, like, a whole week to recover from painting the inside of everything. That was such a giant pain. I’m doing all kinds of things I never do for this kid’s room: paying attention to details, taking extra steps to do things right. I know he won’t notice, but I feel compelled to make things nice. Maybe to distract myself from how uncomfortable I am. I’ll be so excited when this dresser rehab is complete. That nasty red is totally junking up the room. Once I’ve got a few coats of smooth and deep navy blue on there, I can move on to some more manageable projects, like rehabbing the rocking chair I got for $15 and DIY’ing some blackout shades. It will be soooo nice to work on something that I can actually complete in one weekend.