Saturday, February 8, 2014

Grandma's Dresser

This isn't my grandma's dresser, but it is lovingly referred to as "grandma's dresser". 

When I pick up a piece from someone's home I always ask if it has sentimental value.  The answer is usually "yes".  I love hearing stories about people's furniture!  Is that weird?  Some of them have travelled incredible distances.  Some have been passed down from generation to generation.  Some have been loved, some have been abused.  Some hold memories and some still hold artifacts (I once found an envelope containing a magazine picture of ice skates and $50 from the 1950's instructing a grandson to buy them for his Christmas present! Makes me teary eyed thinking of it.).  

Kathy told me this was her grandmother's dresser and I could tell it was hard for her to part with it.  Some people may think when I get a piece of furniture I automatically think of it as mine and plan to do whatever I want with it.  Not true!  I almost always take into consideration where it came from and who it belonged to.  

This dresser was well taken care of and is probably the nicest antique I've had the privilege of working on.  I wanted it to be soft and classic, but modern, too.  Something grandma wouldn't gasp in horror at if she saw it. :) 

I think it turned out so lovely.



After changing my mind about a dozen times I finally told a friend I needed some inspiration!  She said, "I love gray and white."  Well, that just happened to be one of my first thoughts too, so I decided it was fate and went with it.  Thank you Dena!  I knew as soon as I got the first coat on it was perfect!  I chose the color Light French Gray from Sherwin Williams.  I also wanted those details to pop, but still be subtle so I painted them white and lightly distressed the edges of the grooves to help them stand out a little (I did this by folding a piece of sandpaper in half and running it in the groove so it didn't catch the edges too heavily).

I usually like dark hardware against lighter paint, but I didn't want the contrast this time.  I chose these white ceramic rosettes and just love them. 

 I didn't realize until after I took this pic that it looks like she's smiling! :)  I hope that's a good sign!

 The finish is so beautiful-I did rub it a little. lol

Gray is such a beautiful neutral and I don't think it gets enough attention!!

 It had actually been refinished before --I found a bristle stuck in the existing finish ;), and whoever did it did a beautiful job, but they accidentally sanded through the veneer in one spot on the top.  I wanted a wood top, so I stuck with sanding it down and staining it.  The spot is still noticeable (the candle stick is over it right now), but I just chalk it up to "character" and hope the rest of it makes up for the one blemish. 

The drawer bottoms are actually mahogany, but a few of them were stained so I lined them with this beautiful gray and white fabric.  Craig told me they would have popped more if it had been black and white. ;)

I hope I did it justice!  

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  1. It's a beautiful dresser, Lisa! I think you did a great job with your paint and stain selection. The white in the detailed grooves looks great and provides just enough contrast to bring them to your attention.

  2. No worries, you did an absolutely beautiful job! I'm sure Grandma would be pleased. You really take the time to care about a piece and that makes it all the more special!

  3. Something I like about your work is you're not married to the predictable ASCP or CeCe colors.

    I think the world is far too full of Duck Egg Blue and Paris Gray, neither of which speak to me At.All. As a matter of fact, I find I've started to look at the piece for detail and not read, because I don't care about the predictable colors.
    I think the wider pallet you use is refreshing. Whether or not you make it into chalk paint is irrelevant, because your finished product is always tailored to the piece, not the paint.
    Really nice job here, again.

  4. Your dresser looks simply wonderful! I have two old dressers in my bedroom in bad need of a redo. It is hard to get started, but you have inspired me. ~Kelly

    unDeniably Domestic

  5. I wish I had it and I too like to read about your paint choice, you did a fabulous job, love the knobs.

  6. I think Grandma would be pleased. I love that shade of gray and the light distressing you did on it. Beautiful details. Thank you for sharing it at What We Accomplished Wednesdays. Have a happy Valentines Day! ~Deborah


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