Vintage Mahogany Nightstand Makeover

11 Materials
12 Hours

This dark and dreary set of nightstands was destined for something better! We found these on Marketplace and knew they could have a beautiful new look after some much needed attention.

Structurally they were sound, but cosmetically they needed cleaning and sanding so that is where we started. We used Krud Kutter to clean and make sure to use a small toothbrush to get in between the twists of the legs.

Then we used our Surfprep sander that has a flexible sanding pad, perfect for those barley twist legs to sand each nightstand.

We then used some wood filler to fill in the old hardware holes since each drawer originally had two pulls, and we wanted to go with one per drawer for the new look.

There were a few areas on the body that needed more than just scuff sanding with a 220 grit, so on those areas we used 80, then 120, then 150 then back up to 220. We then removed all sanding dust with a tack cloth.

Knowing this is mahogany, a primer was applied to minimize the likelihood of bleed through. We used the spray can of Zinsser oil based primer and applied two coats, lightly sanding in between each one.

Then it was time for the base coat. We had originally planned on spraying the base coat with my paint sprayer so had taped off the drawers with the genius tape/plastic from 3M. We ended up using one one of our favorite brushes, the Zibra Round brush to hand paint the drawers and body in Annie Sloan Chalk Paint Country Grey for the base coat. We brushed on two layers, making sure to vary the brush strokes since it would help achieve texture, especially for the next step.

We then stippled the next color called Original (which is just dabbing your paint brush onto the surface you are painting rather than using strokes) and while it is still wet, using a paper towel for extra texture.

We started that step by crumpling up a clean sheet of paper towel into a tight ball.

Then we opened it, making sure not to smooth out any crinkles that had formed. The crinkles are the good part.

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Once the paper towel is open, we pushed it onto the wet painted surface and then pulled it right back up. See it happen right here.

Here is a close up of the drawer once the paper towel was lifted. We continued that process over the entire piece. It took a while, but the result was worth it.

Next we used a gorgeous pearlescent glaze to bring a touch of shimmer to the piece and to highlight some of the details. We used out Zibra angled sash brush to fit into those turns and twists.

Then we measured the drawers for the new hardware and drilled holes. Before attaching the new hardware, we used a flat top coat (three coats lightly sanding with 600 grit in between each) to protect and seal all that hard work. We then attached the new hardware.

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On the drawer faces we dry brushed the glaze to get a touch of shine. Dry brushing is just making the tips of your paintbrush wet, then taking off most of what was just put on so there is only a hint of glaze left on the brush.

We then used some 220 grit sandpaper to lightly distress some of the edges and used a tack cloth to remove the dust.

Here is the final look. Completely updated and in style.

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Have a question about this project?

2 questions
  • Pam
    on Apr 8, 2020

    What color pearlescent glaze did you use? It is gorgeous! Thank you for sharing.

    • Amini Design Ashburn
      Amini Design Ashburn
      on Apr 8, 2020

      Hi Pam, it is Annie Sloan Pearlescent Glaze. It should be a available at your local Annie Sloan stockist 🙂

  • Lori
    on Apr 15, 2020

    Could I ask why you used oil based primer? I don’t understand when that is used compared to say the regular primer.

    • Amini Design Ashburn
      Amini Design Ashburn
      on Apr 15, 2020

      Mahogany is a known bleeder, so if you use a non-oil base primer such as water based you may see little pink spots in your paint from the wood tannens (we call this bleed thru). These pesky pink spots sometimes don't show up until days or even weeks later so it is better to minimize the chance that it will happen right from the beginning.

Join the conversation

3 of 31 comments
  • Rebeccawilliams20114
    on May 12, 2020

    I love your night stands, I would like to try this,great job.

  • Vikki
    on Jun 10, 2020

    I LOVE it !! Gonna try it as soon as I get the materials. It looks soooo nice and will be perfect for our bedroom as I struggle to find room for more than our bed. I’m finding this project at a perfect spot for my night light & my things for oxygen equipment I need.,also it will be good for my husband to keep all the stuff he’s collected over time .lol

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