A Dresser Makeover – Painting Furniture and Using Antiquing Dark Wax

Giving your furniture a new lease of life with a splash of paint can be very rewarding.
I’ve been painting furniture for a few years now and still remember the feeling of satisfaction when I transformed a pair of glossy pastel blue bedsides into shabby chic white bedside tables. (Below – and please excuse the poor iphone pic quality, but this was a LONG time ago)

I ran out of things to paint in my own home and sourced pieces from here, there and everywhere to satisfy my passion. (See my post on “Where to Find Funky Furniture”)

There is so much possibility in a can or two of paint! And whether you use ordinary latex paint, chalk paint or milk paint, you can achieve a totally new look to a room when you add a pop of colour or transform plain dark wood to white or neutral tones.

Take this dresser for instance. I took it from this:

To this:
I didn’t take any pictures of the process I used to get this look, but you can click on some of the links to the side of my blog for more before/after makeovers and how I achieved them.
For this piece, I used Blake & Taylor‘s Furniture paint in the colour Aged White. Blake & Taylor’s Furniture paint is very similar to Annie Sloan’s Chalk Paint in quality and results – a lovely thick paint that goes on smoothly and requires little to no prep or sanding. Adhering well and covering in two coats, although for this light colour I could have gone 3 coats if I were not adding the dark wax finish.
Here’s a closer look at the dark wax finish I achieved. I sanded lightly all over the finished paint, sanding the edges as I went for a shabby distressed look…
Then I added a coat of clear wax (both Blake & Taylor and ASCP have similar clear and dark waxes and Miss Mustard Seed’s Milk Paint range has an Antique Wax as well as their regular furniture wax which dries clear and a new white wax which adds another whole dimension – another post).
After the clear wax, I added the dark wax in circular and brushing motions until I achieved an aged patina that I was happy with. Buffing as I finished each section or drawer.
Working with dark wax can be a little intimidating at first and it still scares me at times, wondering if I’ve applied enough – or too much! I love the way it stays in the creases or crevices creating shadows and appearing old and well lived.
I just love these pretty knobs that came with the dresser.


… and I found this sweet Kaiser craft paper to line the drawers with:


Be inspired and find something around your house that could do with a fresh coat of paint!


Happy Painting!


We are authorised retailers for Fusion Mineral Paint and Miss Mustard Seed's Milk Paint in Australia. This blog post may contain affiliate links.

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  • Reply
    January 19, 2014 at 8:54 am

    Gorgeous work! You must be very proud of the results.

    Do you mind if I ask where you purchase this paint and also chalk paint?


    • Reply
      I Restore Stuff
      January 19, 2014 at 9:02 am

      Hi. Thank you. Yes, if you click on the highlighted words, “Blake & Taylor” in the above post, it is a link that should take you to their website. If that doesn’t work, they are at http://www.blakeandtaylor.com.au. Based in Australia, so they ship to Aus and NZ. Annie Sloan’s Chalk Paint is available at a lot of different retailers all over the world and you would just go to the Annie Sloan web site to find your nearest retailer. I also love to use Miss Mustard Seed’s Milk Paint, which is also now available in Australia via refinished.com.au
      I hope this info helps.

  • Reply
    Apple Blossom Artisans
    January 19, 2014 at 10:18 pm

    Hello Sharon, I’m from Gower in Wales UK and I actually run a small business which specialises in restoring and recycling quality pieces of furniture that some people might throw away – can you believe don’t see the quality in an old solid piece of furniuture?

    Any how, what I dropped in to say was that I’m using the best quality chalkpaint on the market, and I’ve used many many different brands – Annie Sloan is not a favourite of mine for all sorts of reasons not least her aggressive marketing techniques which attempts to damage the competition.

    So the brand that brings joy to my heart at the moment is Autentcio which goes on like silk. There are over 140 colours in the range and there are complimentary products for finishing like waxes and sealant lacquers.

    Your piece is very charming indeed and I know exactly your sentiment when you talk about the applying the dark wax. You have to admit though it does a marvellous job of ageing a piece, and is especially useful when you’ve got carved details to highlight. I couldn’t be without it in my workshop.

    Have a good weekend.
    ~ Rhianne
    Apple Blossom Artisans Ltd

  • Reply
    January 19, 2014 at 10:54 pm

    Have you tried to make your own chalk paint? I do that all the time. I’m just way to frugal to go out and buy something I can make myself.
    Great job on the desk. Love these old pieces.

    • Reply
      I Restore Stuff
      January 20, 2014 at 7:20 am

      Yes, CraftyCanadian, I used to make my own chalk paint before it became available here in Australia. Once I tried the real thing, I did see some differences and got too lazy to make it anymore.

  • Reply
    Antique Cupboard – Blake & Taylor Furniture Paint Transformation | I Restore Stuff
    March 8, 2014 at 11:29 am

    […] her something that I had already done in these kind of colours like the dresser I finished over HERE (click link). She loved that look, so that’s where we were […]

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