Creating Texture with Dry Brushing

This antique dresser had several coats of paint on it when I bought it.  Its last coat was actually a very pretty turquoise enamel that was chipping everywhere.  If I had had some AS Provence on hand, I probably would have painted it with that colour.  Instead I chose more neutral colours.  After a lot of sanding to even out the chipping, I painted it in Old Ochre and used a Graphite wash on the top and on the drawers.  I wanted to use black knobs so the Graphite seemed a good choice.DSC_0002(42)

After applying the wash, I wasn’t completely happy with the result probably because the dresser has a lot of flat surfaces and not many places for the wash to settle into.  So, I dry brushed over it a few times.  Dry brushing adds texture and layers of colour but you have to be very stingy with the paint.  First, you start with a dry brush ( surprise, surprise) but this is not something I have actually done in the past.  You lightly dip the brush into the paint then brush most of it off.  Then you start to feather the paint onto the surface; it’s amazing how much paint is actually on the brush.  I did about 2 more layers of the Graphite then 2 layers of the Old Ochre on top of that.  The result was very effective and gives the dresser an aged look without dark wax or distressing.  I painted the inside of the drawers in Burgundy because they had old paint splatters in them.  You can’t see the colour very well in the photos but they contrast beautifully with the outside.



In general, you shouldn’t paint the sides of drawers because if they are sticky it will add another layer to the drawer and the paint may scratch.  However, these drawers are on the loose side, so I painted the sides as well as the inside.


Wax Resist Distressing

This dresser make-over actually started with the knobs. I was given 6 of these marbled Anthropologie knobs and knew that I would use them someday on a child’s or baby’s dresser as they remind me of gum dresser close-up

The dresser itself is perfect for a baby’s room as it is the correct height for a change table.  I wanted to paint it in Old White with some blue peeking through to match the knobs.  The blue is actually a mixture of Aubusson, Florence and Greek Blue.  I painted the whole thing with one coat of the blue and then decided to try wax resist.  I paint a lot of furniture with two-tone washes but I wanted something different. I used candle wax on all the carved areas then painted a coat of Old White on top of that.  All the other areas have 2 coats of the white.  When it was dry, I sanded back the Old White to reveal parts of blue.  It mirrors the marbling of the knobs and looks a bit like crayon or stripes.  It is both contemporary and antique at the same time. baby dresser 3 baby dresser 1baby dresser 4baby dresser 5

I also stenciled dragonflies in the drawers to add to the whimsical aspect of the piece and I used MMS Hemp oil to revive the dry wood inside the drawers. baby dresser drawer

The dresser has a matching round mirror but I think it looks a lot better without it.