Noting Grace
by Noting Grace
10 Materials
3 Hours

Before you pass on an ugly piece, read this - you just may change your mind!

I took this ugly, disgusting dresser and transformed it into a beautiful DIY unfinished natural wood dresser.

Would you pass on this ugly dresser? There was a local junk shop that was closing it’s doors and it was a sad, sorry place. Windows busted out, random bowls of cat food laying around, and forgotten items that not many people would want.

That’s when I saw this dresser. And I saw the groups of people turning their nose up at this disgusting piece.

Covered in stains, it had a unique smell, was missing a drawer and the remaining drawers had a mysterious fuzz growing inside of them.

For just a few bucks and some elbow grease - I turned this forgotten chest into something beautiful.

I did not take pictures because of the dangerous state of this piece. Donning a hazmat suit, I tackled that piece with much caution. Chiefly concerned for my safety, I was worried that I’d carry any cooties from this piece to my phone or camera. That wasn’t about to happen, so no pics of the stripping process.

The mystery fuzz really bothered me, so we removed all the bottoms from each drawer and took them to the dump.

Stripping furniture can get really messy, so prepare a container to place the gunk in. An old cardboard box worked perfectly for this. Just apply the stripper, let it sit a bit, and scrape it off.

After you strip the piece, wipe it down afterward. I used soapy water because I knew it would be sanded, but you can use vinegar as well.

Using a sanding block, I started sanding the chest. Since this was in such poor shape, I also sanded the interior to make sure I removed any remaining yuck that was there before.

Similarly, I sanded the interior and exterior of all the drawers, just to be safe and to ensure that all gunk had disappeared.

I’m so pleased with how my DIY unfinished natural wood dresser turn out! I can’t wait to hear your thoughts.

Let me know if this inspires you to hunt down a piece to love back to life.

For more details on this furniture flip, check out the original blog post.


  • Old Dresser
  • Citristrip Stripping Gel
  • Scraping Tool
  • Sandpaper and  Sanding Block
  • Plywood 4 X 8 – 1/4 inch smooth for drawer inserts
  • circular saw
  • wood glue
  • rubber gloves, mask and goggles
  • Glass drawer knobs and pulls from Hobby Lobby

Resources for this project:
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Noting Grace
Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!
Frequently asked questions
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  • Cathy Cathy on Feb 06, 2019

    You did an amazing job turned out truly beautiful!!!!!

  • Jody Price Jody Price on Jan 26, 2021

    What did you do to make the large drawer fit in the middle?

  • Nancy Chestnut Nancy Chestnut on Feb 09, 2021

    Very very nice. You never know what the stripped wood is going to look like. You got lucky and it's beautiful. I'm looking twice at my own pieces!

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