DIY Dresser Stripping , Repainting, Repair and Restoration

    The girlfriend and I decided to meet in the middle on the looks of her dressers.
    I wasn’t for all of the colors and she wasn’t for going all black or brown. So we decided to go two-tone. Grey and white, but with the detailed areas trimmed in black.
    The tools we used for stripping the paint:

    Pack of 10 razor blades (Used only 6)
    Pack of 5  9″x11″, 150 grit sand paper
    Pack of 5  9″x11″, 400 grit sand paper
    1 sanding block
    2 sanding sponges
    1 gallon gloss white paint
    1 gallon light grey paint
    1 quart black acrylic paint
    1 6″ foam paint roller
    1 4″ foam Paint roller
    1 9″ paint roller
    One bottle of wood glue. barely even used any of it.

    Paint Removal
    The majority of paint removal was done with the razor blades; just plane old square-shaped razor blades.
    Sanding alone was a lesson in self control. Heads up: No matter how bad you want to, do not press harder on the sand paper. Hold just hard enough to keep the sand paper from sliding out from under your hand. Fold it in half to get a better grip if you have to.

    The trick to using the razor blade, when you hit a spot where you can’t get between the paint and the wood, make curves with a slight slicing motion as you continue to push away with the razor blade. Be sure to not cut into the wood. You can usually feel when that happens, and sometimes feel it just before it happens. Every now and again you will feel nothing and cut right into the surface of the wood. So be careful and go slow so if you do cut into the wood, it won’t be as deep as if you rushed and just chopped away at the paint. I kept the blade at around 5-10 degrees. If I could get lower, I did; especially where the paint was thin. Sometimes, on the thin spots, I just had to chop and scrape at the paint. Sometimes it was more beneficial to come at that spot from a different position/side.

    We started with the chest of drawers.

    The chest of drawers took us nearly two weeks to scrape the paint off, sand to prep for paint, then paint and cure. Of course we did all drawers at this time, even the drawers for the dresser.

    Here are are the drawers sanded down and glued:

    Then the dresser:

    By the time we started the dresser, the work got super easy. Not sure if there were fewer layers of paint to remove on the dresser or if we just got really good at scraping and sanding by then. We were done scraping, sanding and painting the dresser in two days. All that is left is the detailed area to be trimmed out in the black acrylic paint.

    Applying the paint
    First and foremost, do full length strokes with the roller. You do not want to have a thick spot in the middle where you stopped one stroke and then started another. This will show when the paint dries and will look bad. Full length, straight line, even rolls the entire length of the dresser.

    Nearing the final stages of the project, we brought the dresser and the chest of drawers into the bedroom, to get out of the heat and dust of the garage.

    The rest of the work would be the filling in of the detailed areas with black trim and possibly a flat white inner covering. This is still undecided and since it would be irreversible, we are taking our time.

    Leave a Reply