When I saw this old dresser among the dusty flea market furniture, I KNEW I had to have it. I didn’t care that it was missing it’s mirror and most of it’s knobs or that it was scuffed along the bottom, water damaged on the back, or grimy and sticky to the touch. Thanks to my Pinterest addiction, I saw endless possibilities.
I knew exactly what I wanted to do with this diamond in the rough. I was going to turn this beat-up old dresser into a farmhouse style buffet that would double as a charging station.
Thankfully, my husband is pretty handy and willing to help me with all of the projects that I drag home. (No matter how ugly and nasty they initially seem.)
This is how we turned an ugly old dresser into a buffet to brag about!
- hack saw
- orbital sander
- 60-grit sandpaper for sander
- sanding sponge
- paint brushes
- primer (Zinsser Bull’s Eye 123)
- paint (Sherwin Williams Showcase Stain-Blocking Paint & Primer)
- stain (Minwax Gel Stain)
- 1/4″ plywood
- handles and knob
Step 1: Remove Damaged Parts & Drawers
First, we had to remove the wooden backing of the dresser, since it was badly damaged and falling apart. Held on by a couple of small screws, it was easy to remove and throw in the trash.
Next, we took out the four bottom drawers, revealing more damaged particle board underneath. After removing that, we cut out the wooden supports between the drawers with a hack saw.
Step 2: Start Sanding
Then came the REAL work of any furniture refurbishment…..the dreaded sanding! Sanding is my least favorite part of the whole process. It’s messy and tedious, but it has to be done.
We removed the door and the remaining drawers to make them more easily accessible. Then went to town with an orbital sander and 60 grit paper to smooth our surface for painting. We used a sanding sponge to really get in the corners and for all of those little beads.
After sanding till our hands hurt, we took a damp rag and wiped the whole thing down.
Step 3: Prime
Finally, we were able to start painting!
There are many paints and techniques that say that you don’t have to prime or sand anything before you start painting. However, I believe that anything worth doing is worth doing right, so I don’t skip these steps.
I plan on keeping this thing for a long time. So, it’s definitely going to need paint that is going to hold up to rambunctious kids and Army movers.
The primer we used was Zinsser Bull’s Eye 123 Primer.
The girls were so excited to help mommy paint!
Step 4: Paint
After 2 coats of primer, we let it dry overnight. The next day, we started painting.
We opted to use Sherwin Williams Showcase Stain-Blocking Paint & Primer in Origami White (semi-gloss).
This paint and primer combination has held up really well on my desk for over a year, so I have high hopes that this buffet will hold up well too.
After the paint dried, we nailed a thin sheet of plywood to the back and replaced the drawers and door. It was finally starting to look like the farmhouse buffet that I had envisioned.
Step 5: Stain
One of the last steps to this process, was to add stain to the top of the dresser.
We tried something new with this project and used a gel stain for the first time. This Coffee-colored Minwax Gel Stain was easier to use than I expected. The pros of using the gel stain was that it only took one coat and that it didn’t have hardly any odor.
The downside, however, was that you have to wipe off the excess stain with an old rag, which was a little messy.
Step 6: Add Handles & Knobs
After staining, we added handles and a knob that we found at Hobby Lobby (40% off!).
Step 7: Cut Holes in Back
Since we want to use our buffet as a charging station for our tablets, my husband cut holes in the plywood on the back of the buffet. The holes are placed behind the top drawers to allow a short extension cord to run from the wall outlet to a power strip inside the drawer.
Now, we can charge all of our tablets at the same time, in the same place. No more lost cords or fear of stepping on an expensive iPad because the kids are charging it in the floor of their bedroom.
Step 8: Decorate
Finally, we were done and I was able to start decorating our new farmhouse buffet!
Using pictures of the kids, a flower arrangement I made myself, a table runner, and baskets I found at Wal-Mart, I didn’t spend too much money decorating the new buffet. (I was excited to find picture frames at Marshalls that matched the buffet so perfectly. They even have round beads around the edges, just like the buffet does.)
We are slightly obsessed with our new (to us) farmhouse buffet. It’s both functional and beautiful!