Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Antique Serpentine Dresser

I found this awesome serpentine dresser in the warehouse at my local Habitat for Humanity store.  I was actually there to pick up a different piece and he said he had something else he wanted to show me. Of course, I couldn't pass up all those curvey drawers!  

The finish was extremely rough and all the original pulls were missing, but the piece was in such great shape and all the drawers worked really well. 

I already had a color in mind when I picked it up and ended up mixing Refreshing and a little bit of Vintage from Americana Decor.  It's actually a super matte acrylic paint so it acts like chalk paint which I absolutely love.  It's really thick so I just added a litte water until I got the consistency I wanted.  I really liked working with it and would definitely buy again. 


Top Before

Wowzas!  It's definitely been used and abused!!  I think someone had tried to add laquer over the existing finish and it just ended up being a huge mess.  My hubby took it to the shop for me because it needed more help than I could give it with my orbital.  By the time I got there he had already stripped it for me and sanded it down.  How sweet is that?!  Yep, I've said it before and I will say it again....he's AMAZING! :))


So much better!! 

And, I just have to show you the top right away because it turned out beautifully!  After sanding it all down I simply gave it one coat of Jave Gel from General Finishes and 4 coats of General Finishes High Performance Top Coat in Flat. Look at how the grain pops!  You would have never known that was under that old, ugly finish. 

Not only does she have a cute, curvy front, but look at these side panels!  Love them!!  The finish on the body of the dresser wasn't too bad, so I just scuff sanded, painted, and distressed.  I love how all the old alligator skin shows through on the sides now.  

The drawer fronts did get sanded down to the bare wood.  They have oak veneer on them so the grain is very open.  Normally I don't like how that looks, but on this piece it's very fitting.  I do believe it has to be almost 100 years old. I also like how the paint crackled over the old finish in places.  It gives it a very authentic feel. 

I love this hardware with this color.  I wanted to go with all glass knobs, but sometimes they just get lost and I think the hardware should stand out.  So, these are the best of both worlds.  I get the glass, but also the definition with the anitque brass beading on the edge.  And, these small antique brass flowers on the top drawers just make the peice. 

I also gave the original keyholes (so glad it still had them!) a coat of ORB.

So pretty!

I couldn't pass up the opportunity to add some fun fabric to the drawers!  Love this big, bold pattern!


  1. That piece of furniture is more beautiful than words can express.

    The refinishing job is beautiful and the color is just perfect. Good job!


  2. I recently purchased a piece almost identical to this one except mine has casters and is in pretty good shape. I plan on staining the top of my dresser as you have, but haven't settled on a color for the bottom or what hardware to use. Your piece is lovely and makes me anxious to get started on mine.

  3. Absolutely breath-taking!

    You did a fabulous job on this piece - I cannot even believe the difference.

    Lisa, you make the world so much more beautiful, Thank you for salvaging these abused forgotten ugly things and making them AMAZING heirloom quality pieces of beauty!

  4. This is so cool! I just wrote a review on Americana Decor paint. I really like the product but I have not tried this color. Bet I will now. Than you for the post!


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