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DIY Dresser Makeover for a nursery


DIY Dresser Makeover for a nursery

Part of setting up a new room makeover is having great furniture. But like most people you probably don’t want to spend a lot of money. That is where a great dresser makeover can really help! You can get a great unique look, for a fraction of the price. That is what we did as we are working on our nursery makeover. I found a sturdy dresser and gave it a dresser makeover to fit the new nursery! And we saved a lot of money! So now I’m going to show you how I did it!

While setting up our new nursery, I knew exactly what type of dresser I wanted. A double wide dresser that was about waist high. But I also knew I needed to stay within a budget. I couldn’t really afford to just run out and buy a brand new dresser. Those are quite pricey! Thankfully we found a great thrift deal on a sturdy dresser! It was FREE in fact. But usually you can find great deals on yard sales.

DIY Dresser Makeover for a nursery

The trick next is to make it match the nursery! Or whatever room you want to place your new dresser. Thankfully our dresser was already black so it fit the main theme. But it looked worn. So I decided to give it a dresser makeover to make it unique.

Dresser Makeover

DIY Dresser Makeover for a nursery



I had a few different ideas of what I could do with this dresser. And I actually tried a few of those ideas. And they failed miserably! So this dresser makeover took a few different attempts to get something I really liked. And you know what? That is OK.

It is OK to try and fail. Thankfully my failures weren’t so horrible that I couldn’t fix them with a little chalk paint! Oh man, how I love Chalk paint! If you will remember it was a lifesaver on our kid’s nightstand makeover. Well, it completely saved the day on our dresser makeover too.

Our dresser had a number of scratches and scuffs in the old paint. So I used a paint marker to cover them up. Only it didn’t blend. They were still quite visible. And I tried to stencil paint with milk paint. That failed horribly. Because the milk paint was too runny and bled through the stencil. The designs were so blurred.

DIY Dresser Makeover for a nursery

So I grabbed my trusty Chalk paint to fix the problem. I love chalk paint because you don’t have to do prep work if you don’t want to. No sanding required! Which since I am 38 weeks pregnant, I didn’t have time nor energy for a sanding project. I needed to get this dresser done and done quick! This baby can come at any minute!

DIY Dresser Makeover for a nursery

Dresser makeover Supplies needed:

So I painted the top with black chalk paint. It covered up all the mess ups from the paint marker and the stencil issues. And left a gorgeous black surface. And I only needed one coat. I also love chalk paint because it is very minimal mess, no odor and I could paint it right there in the nursery. No need to haul the huge dresser back down 2 flights of stairs to the garage or outdoors.

DIY Dresser Makeover for a nursery

Next I went to work on the drawers. I wanted a fun design in the drawers to make them stand out. Since I knew stencils were not my friend; I used lace.

Yes, you read that right. LACE! As in from the fabric department. I found a nice lace pattern I liked and used that as a stencil. Then you want a quality spray paint. My dresser color scheme is black and white. So I used a Krylon white spray paint. I wanted something easy. So I spent the extra $1 and got the Krylon SuperMaxx spray paint. It is a primer, and color all in one! So worth it! It saves a lot of effort and time. And gives a beautiful finish! So definitely get that one!

DIY Dresser Makeover for a nursery

You will also want to invest the few dollars into the Spray can handle. It makes spray painting so easy! And less painful on your fingers.

Cut your lace to fit the area on your dresser drawers that you want the design. I wanted the entire front surface so I draped the lace across the front of the drawers. (Obviously you need to remove the handles before you do this part.)

DIY Dresser Makeover for a nursery

You will want to tack the lace down so it doesn’t shift in the breeze or while you are spraying it with paint. I just used simple thumb tacks.

Then spray evenly across the lace. Wait at least 10 minutes to let it dry and then remove the lace and move onto the next drawers.

Be sure that the lace pattern is facing the same direction on all the drawers. If you put it on a different angle it will show up when you place all the drawers back into the dresser. I accidentally put it on in a different angle on one drawer and had to redo it. (Again the black chalk paint came to my rescue! I painted over the design and just started again).

Allow the drawers to dry thoroughly over night.

While I waited for the drawers to dry, I returned to the top of the dresser in the nursery. I wanted something nice on the top. A fun design. Originally I thought it would be cool to do the same lace design across the top. And really it would be awesome to do that. But since the dresser is so big,  I didn’t want to beg the husband to haul that thing down 2 flights of stairs and outside so I could spray paint it and then ask him to haul it back upstairs. So I went with my next idea. Stencils.

Now I was nervous because the stencils didn’t work out so well the first time with the milk paint. But I figured if I used chalk paint maybe I could have a better effect. And it worked. I taped the stencil down, then I used white chalk paint and a small paint brush.

DIY Dresser Makeover for a nursery


Without over saturating the stencil I painted white butterflies  and a bird design on the top. I used the Plaid Delta Stencil Mania Butterflies and the Plaid:Craft Martha Stewart Large Stencils 3 Sheets/Pkg-Tendrils Stencils from Amazon. They were the perfect size, the exact designs I was looking for and great quality as they are a durable material and not as flimsy. 

DIY Dresser Makeover for a nursery

Allow it to dry for 5 minutes and then move the stencil.

DIY Dresser Makeover for a nursery

It did have a little bleeding under the stencil. But with a very small and fine tipped paint brush, I went back over the edges of the stencil design with the black chalk paint and hand painted the design back in where it had bled through.

DIY Dresser Makeover for a nursery

Again the chalk paint was so easy to work with, covered well and dried super quick. So it made fixing the stencils super easy.

DIY Dresser Makeover for a nursery

I then called it quits this day and waited until the next day to continue. After all I am 9 months pregnant and I couldn’t handle being on my feet anymore. But you could probably get away with just waiting a few hours before proceeding to the next step.

After the paint on both the dresser top and the drawers are completely dry you can move onto the furniture wax. This is important as it seals the paint, and protects your furniture and gives a great look.

Using the furniture wax and the wax brush, very lightly brush the wax over the surfaces that you painted. You don’t need much. A very little goes a long way. In fact that small bottle of furniture wax that I purchased only took about 1/4 the bottle to do the entire dresser.

DIY Dresser Makeover for a nursery

Apply the furniture wax evenly and allow to dry for 3-5 minutes and then buff to a shine or smooth texture with a cotton lint free rag. Then if you need another coat, repeat the process.

I found I only needed 1 coating on the drawers with the spray paint, but 3 coats on top of the chalk paint to get the smooth finish I wanted.

DIY Dresser Makeover for a nursery

I allowed the furniture wax to sit for a few hours and then I moved on because I was impatient to get this project finished.

DIY Dresser Makeover for a nursery

I decided I didn’t need to do anything with the handles. So I just reattached them and put the drawers back in place. And that’s all folks! Our dresser makeover is complete!

DIY Dresser Makeover for a nursery

Once done then I filled it up with all of the baby clothes. I used the  Ikea SCRUBB Storage Boxes to help keep things organized in each drawer. And now our nursury dresser is complete and ready for this baby girl to arrive!

DIY Dresser Makeover for a nursery

Not counting the hours of my initial attempts where it just failed miserably, I was able to do a complete dresser makeover in just a few hours in 2 different days. It was really quite a simple effort that gave a tremendous result!

I mean it doesn’t even look like the same dresser anymore! Yet is completely fits the nursery and was so easy to do!


DIY Dresser Makeover for a nursery

now After!

DIY Dresser Makeover for a nursery


My next step is to finish the diaper changing station (where this dresser will be the base) and I also have a nightstand to makeover to coordinate. But that might have to wait until after the baby arrives. But I’ll keep you updated on that project too. I have some fun ideas for that nightstand I can’t wait to put into action.

Make sure you check back as we have a few more fun Nursery Reveals with our Nursery makeover, diaper changing station, activity center, and nightstand makeover coming soon!

DIY Dresser Makeover for a nursery

What colors would you use in your dresser makeover?



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Friday 11th of September 2015

I absolutely LOVE the idea of a black dresser. It looks really great in that space!


Thursday 10th of September 2015

You are so creative. I love how the dresser turned out.

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