Sewing, Refashioning, Repurposing & Thrifting Through Life

Refinished Antique Dresser

I recently refinished this dresser (see Refashion of a Different Kind) and wanted to showcase the result.

This beautiful cherrywood dresser is part of a complete bedroom set, which I’m still working on. It started out like this-dull, boring brown tone, faded with watermarks on the surface. It’s hard to tell from the after picture. It really is more of a transformation than what shows in the pictures:


Andrew Malcolm Solid Cherrywood Dresser BEFORE

And here’s how it ended up:


Dresser AFTER-the beautiful cherry wood grain really pops.

This was a LOT of work but worth every minute. I LOVE beautiful wood. Some people might paint this stuff but I always like to salvage a really good piece first. I opted to leave the original hardware on it. Antiques depreciate in value if they don’t have the original hardware.

Here’s another view:


You can see the matching bed in this picture. I didn’t do anything to it. It was in GREAT condition.

And a close up of the wood grain:


I am so happy with this. Now I have to finish off the night stands and the tallboy dresser. Still a lot of work to do!


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From One to Two

I have a very large front foyer. It’s useless space really. The kind of space that if you’re coming from a tiny house and looking at mine, it seems like a blessing. It’s not. I’d rather have a wider living area. It’s always presented a challenge on what to actually PUT in such a big front entrance. I used to have a wooden bench along one wall that had a tiny storage compartment underneath. It was great when the kids were little-for sitting them down and pulling on boots and shoes but there was never enough storage space in the hallway. Our front closet is actually not located in the front hallway. Go figure! Walk about 10 steps from the front door, down one step to your right and there’s the front closet. Silly, really but I wasn’t about to knock down walls and all that.

I’ve never known where to put the countless hats, mitts, scarves, keys, slippers, etc. that a 5 person household accumulates. The closet holds our coats and shoes and not much else. I wanted more storage. Yes, there’s that word again-storage. I also wanted all this stuff out of sight. I have a thing about clutter, meaning I can’t stand it. Less is more, you know. The older I get, the more I want to rid my living space of stuff. It clutters my mind, all these possessions of ours.

This is where big old dressers come in handy. You know the ones people throw away? I  currently have a love affair with such dressers. They are wonderful storage pieces. I picked one up for free. Some of the stuff I get is really dusty dirty. I mean really but I can always see the potential of such pieces. I didn’t really want or need the mirror that came with it. I figured I’d just trash it unless it started speaking to me.

I never took a before picture. Envision 1980s reddish brown. I did a test to strip the top and see what was underneath. Unfortunately, only part of this was solid wood so painting was the solution. As with everything I paint, I prep. A good cleaning with mild soap and water usually does the trick. 2 coats of primer, 2 coats of paint. Reattach the original hardware. I kinda liked the hardware the way it was, so I decided not to change it out. And done.

It now houses all the winter gear. We each get our own drawer plus one for slippers and one for keys, phones, etc. It helps fill in the long wall in this too-big front entrance quite nicely.


It didn’t end there. What to do with the mirror? Since the main floor bathroom was getting a fresh coat of paint and the “builder’s” mirror was in there (accumulating rust by the way), I knew it had to go and I knew I had a perfectly good mirror from this piece. It had a wooden design thing on the top (again, no BEFORE picture), which Mr. Restyle removed for me. Then he removed the mirror and I painted the frame with the chalk paint from the Not So Pretty in Pink chair. 3 coats of the chalk paint and a coat of the Annie Sloan soft wax. Pop the mirror into the frame. Attach a french cleat to hold up the mirror. A french cleat is used to hold up pictures. It attaches to the wall and then the picture gets attached to it. Looks like this:


Here’s the mirror. That’s how you get 2 for 1!


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Simple Storage Solution

Since I’ve been away for so long, I have a lot of catching up to do so look for several posts in a short period of time. Like so many other families with kids who are into gaming, you know all too well how quickly gaming consoles and all the games that go with them can add up and take over a room. What to do with all this stuff?!

This next project was a bit of an accident. I was looking for an old dresser to turn into a TV stand. The stand we had, although fairly big, still didn’t have enough storage for the satellite receiver, home theatre system, VCR, DVD players, etc plus all the cables were so visible. Yuck! If you’ve ever shopped for TV stands, you know how expensive they can get! I wanted to find something that could be closed when not in use. Scouring kijiji, I found this:


Pretty gross, huh? It came out of a house that was so dirty and dusty that I didn’t want to bring it inside. This is after Mr. Restyle did some sanding to smooth it out a bit. This is solid wood and I mean SOLID and I loved that it had doors that could close and hide all the junk inside. This was going to live in the basement family room and unlike the rest of our house, down there I wanted a modern decor so the brown wood had to go.

Mr. Restyle drilled holes at the back to feed the cables.


Here’s a view of the front. The handles were removed as I wasn’t going to reuse them. This piece was going silvery.


Next, the doors were taken off and the whole thing was primed. 2 coats of primer later and it was ready for paint. I chose a light grey as the colour scheme downstairs is grey/yellow/white. I used a paint from Home Hardware’s Beautitone line simply because I didn’t feel like driving all the way out to Home Depot and there’s a Home Hardware very close to where I live. I’d also had good success using their Cabinet & Furniture paint on the dresser that you see in the background in these pictures. That’s another story. That piece became 2 separate things that I’m quite happy about.

I like how it turned out.



And complete! What a difference some paint and new hardware can make!


Then I changed my mind! Decided this was still not going to fit all the entertainment gear, so it got repurposed and became strictly a storage centre for the boys and their games. It now hides all the discs, controllers and cables. Guess I have to find yet another, BIGGER piece to house the TV and stuff!


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