Between this one and the old beast from the screened in porch I really don’t know which one is more of a mystery. Neither dresser had been used in decades by the time I came along to refinish them. With the passing of my grandma we opened up the old play house (our future duck coop) and were both dismayed and delighted to find that it was full. We started pulling things out and discovered my mother’s two old dressers (check out this one in our tutorial for converting a dresser into a vanity) and this old thing with no idea where it came from. It’s beautiful and it always was beautiful even before I started work on it, I had an inkling that it was probably the most unique and also the oldest piece of everything I had. A friend of mine (who had a bit of furniture experience) confirmed my thoughts when he said he thought that this piece was worth the most out of everything. Of course, worth really means nothing to me (I’ll never sell it) however, knowing that it is special outside of my own feelings toward it is pretty cool.
I sanded the whole thing down instead of stripping it and it just about killed me, definitely should have stripped all of the funk and gunk off of it first. I did this piece when I did Eleonora’s buffet/our entertainment center and I swear the same dude on the same day seventy years ago put the same nasty motor oil finish on them both. I felt like my arms were gonna fall off. I just sanded. And sanded. And sanded. *facepalm* The whole dresser probably has over ten hours of just me sanding into it. I should have just used paint stripper on it!
Once I had it down to bare wood though I really got excited. The drawer fronts are striped, seriously, like a zebra! It is SO cool. I used every grit of sand paper available and mostly my orbital sander on the entire piece. I stained it in a black minwax gel stain using a brush and just wiping it off after a few minutes with a rag. After that I put two coats of a satin poly acrylic over it to protect the finish. I can’t get over the wood grain! I just love it! And then I put all my shiny knobs on it and I couldn’t have been more pleased. It sits in my office now, I never did manage to get the drawers working well so I just use it as storage that I rarely need. I really love it, can’t say exactly why, but out of all of the pieces that I’ve refinished over the last few years, this is the one that holds my heart completely.