open ’til dusk.

You may remember that I picked up this petite dresser while out thrifting a few weeks back.

It was a Goodwill find, and I mentioned that I don’t always like to buy furniture at the Goodwill because it’s usually in pretty rough shape.  And this piece was no exception.

The veneer was all chipped up around the edges of the drawers and the top of the dresser.  At some point, someone must have torn away the damaged bits and re-glued the veneer because despite the chips, what was left was held firmly in place.

There was also a hole in the bottom drawer, and there was a gap at the back of the top where there must have once been a mirror attached.

Finally, there was some pretty ugly wallpaper lining the drawers that had been seriously glued down.  Now this is the avocado green and harvest gold that I remember …

Pulling this stuff out was more trouble than I’d bargained for.  After pulling off the loose stuff, and scraping away at the rest, I still ended up with this …

What did they use to adhere this stuff, contact cement?

Finally I decided to just sand off what I could using my orbital sander.

And I still couldn’t get it all off.

So after Ken replaced the drawer bottom with the hole in it, I resorted to re-lining the drawers with some paper that I happened to have on hand with one main difference.  I did not glue mine down.  If some future owner wants to switch it out, it will be as easy as lifting it out of the drawer.

As for the outside of the dresser, I started with a good sanding and cleaning, then I painted it in two coats of Dixie Belle’s Midnight Sky.

Next I pulled out the Flower Market – Open Til Dusk stencil from Wallcutz.

If this looks familiar, it’s because it is the same general design as the Farmers Market stencil that I used last fall on this sign.

The stencil was a bit taller than the front of this dresser, so I decided to cut it down.  It would have been harder to get a nice, crisp result if I’d left the stencil whole.  So I trimmed off the top two lines of wording, and then applied the lower portion to my dresser front.

I first used Dixie Belle’s Putty to create a shadow for the word “FLOWER”.  Then, once that was dry, I moved the stencil up and to the right just a little bit and stenciled the little flourishes in Putty, and then the rest of the stencil in Dixie Belle’s Drop Cloth.

I used an artist’s brush to fill in the bridges on the lettering, and then added some dimension to the Putty colored flourishes with some dabs of Drop Cloth.

Finally, I decided to try adding the “Open Til Dusk” wording to the top of the dresser.

I placed it at the front because most people will put stuff on top of a dresser, so this way the wording will still show in front of any stuff.  After I got it on, I wasn’t entirely sure I liked it.  However, Mr. Q voted to keep it, so I went with it.

Let’s just talk for a minute about the bang for your buck with stencils.  I used the 18″ x 30″ version of the stencil on my dresser (this stencil comes in 8 different sizes ranging from 9″ x 15″ up to 21″ x 38″).  The size I used is priced at $25.95 (but FYI, there is a BOGO sale going on today at Wallcutz, so you could get two for the price of one, go check it out).  The beauty of stencils is that you can use them over and over and over.  You can mask off sections, and just use part of one.  For example, I could see using that “SEEDS – STEMS – BLOOMS” wording on something smaller.  You can re-arrange the layout by moving the stencil around.  And you can even cut a section off and use it separately like I did on this piece. And of course, you can use any color of paint you like with a stencil.  I especially like using them in white over black paint like I did on this piece.  If I just use this stencil 5 or 6 times, my cost per use is only going to be around $5.  That’s a total bargain in my book.  But in the end, even if I were to just use it once, it’s still cheaper than a transfer or a paint inlay.

As for the original wood knobs, I opted to just paint them in Midnight Sky and call it good.

They don’t completely disappear, especially the ones over the “F” and the “R”, but they mostly disappear.  I felt like trying to paint them to somehow match the stenciling would make them stand out even more.

By the way, remember those veneer chips I mentioned at the beginning of the post?  I could have taken the time to mitigate them by using some wood filler, but I didn’t bother.  I just painted right over them.  One’s eye is drawn to the stenciling and tends to completely ignore those flaws.

My handyman Ken helped with cutting down a board to fill in that gap at the back of the dresser where a mirror would have been.

It’s just a simple, plain board, but it finishes things off back there properly.

I went to Target and spent a bit of money on fresh flowers to stage this piece, but that’s OK because this post was sponsored by Wallcutz.  So I had a little bit of a budget for props.

The fresh flower display at my local Target was so adorable, with faux chalkboard signs showing the prices and that inspired me to do something similar with my staging.  Isn’t the color on those Gerbera Daisies gorgeous?

I mixed in a few of my faux flowers to fill out the scene.

At the beginning of this post I called this dresser ‘petite’.  That’s because it’s only about 27″ tall.  I think that makes it the perfect height to use as either a T.V. stand or as a nightstand alternative next to the bed.  It would also be the perfect size for a child’s room!

It was so much fun to give this little dresser a new life with some paint and a stencil!

What do you think of how it turned out?  Leave a comment and let me know.

This piece is for sale, so if you are local and have a spot for it, be sure to check out my ‘available for local sale‘ page for more details.

Thank you to Dixie Belle Paint Co for supplying the paint used in this project, and to Wallcutz for sponsoring this post and providing the stencil.


20 thoughts on “open ’til dusk.

  1. I just love black furniture! So fresh and classic. And the staging is perfect. I think the stencil gives it so much life and a fun vibe!


  2. When I saw the “before” picture I could not wait to see what magic you performed. It was truly an ugly duckling in every possible way. The transformation is just what I expect from your creative talents and it’s a winner. As for how I would use it…probably out on my screened porch to store potting supplies or blankets or candles. Plants and flowers on top, of course. It is low enough to not block the view into the back yard. Another well done project!!


  3. So happy to see a furniture make-over again! I love all the other posts, but was so missing the furniture posts. Hoping better weather comes soon so you can get back to doing more of them. This turned out adorable!


    1. I should try that too. Another favorite of mine is to go to the original Bachman’s on Lyndale and have lunch in their little café in the greenhouse. For an hour or two you can pretend that you’re on a patio!


  4. I love the size and shape of the piece. You chose the perfect fit. I like the top stencil, it adds the perfect finishing touch! Another well done piece!
    Smiles, alice


    1. Thanks so much Alice. I do like the look of a graphic that fills all of the space on the front of a piece. That’s the beauty of being able to order different sizes of stencils from Wallcutz.


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