Old Dresser Makeover...what to Do?

1 Material
30 Days
I bought this of a local swap shop site for $25. I didn't realize it was so old and the veneer was in such bad shape unti I got it home and started looking at it and trying to decide what I wanted to do. At first I was going to paint it and be done with it, but the old wood just kept telling me "do not paint me", but the crafting person in me wanted to do something different. So I decided to stain shade a horse on the front and stain all the wood. I am ok at drawing flowers and butterflies and hummingbirds but a horses face is hard, at least for me. I started out removing the veneer. The easiest way to accomplish this is a wet towel and an old iron. I would wet my towel lay it on an area and set the hot iron in it until the steam stopped. I would lift the towel and scrape the veneer right off. It is time consuming but so much better than trying to sand it all off. After all the veneer was removed I let the piece set outside in the sunshine to dry. DO NOT TRY TO SAND WHEN IT IS DAMP. After it was dried I sanded with 100grit and then 150 then 200. I then reinforced the inside of the dresser. The old drawers obvious do not slide like new drawers...I did run some bar soap on the bottom of the drawer and the wood slides inside to try and help the drawers slide easier. Then I cleaned the entire piece and drew out my design. I used Jacobean stain all over as it was as close to the original as I thought I could get. I used wipe on poly to seal.
Removing the veneer
Veneer bubbling up after steam
Scraping off the veneer
All sanded and ready to go
Design drawn on
Stain shading started
Finished...This is all done with stain, no paint.
Before and after
Suggested materials:
  • Sand paper, stain, polywipe   (Local swap shop site)
Frequently asked questions
Have a question about this project?
3 of 6 questions
  • Phylis Phylis on Aug 25, 2017
    Beautiful but where are the knobs.

  • Miracleonearth Miracleonearth on Aug 28, 2017
    What did you use to draw the horse? Pencil?

  • Nancy Hill Gant Nancy Hill Gant on Sep 14, 2017
    Do you have a pattern of the horse? I have a similar dresser and love the horse on yours!!

Join the conversation
4 of 46 comments
  • L. Creative L. Creative on Nov 17, 2017
    It IS very cool and for a horse lover WOW!

  • ML Lynn ML Lynn on Mar 04, 2018

    I only want to do unusuaI pieces and this is an unusual project. I will definitely try this. I have been preparing by saving paper wrap and bags to do a faux leather project but have been struggling as to what item should I use. I can combine both projects and add the faux leather to the top. Excited. You did a fantastic job.. One question, would it be creepy if I did a drawing of a relative instead of a horse?