antique dresser gets a Swedish facelift

i picked up this antique dresser on Craigslist. it had been with the family for a few generations, but it was time for it to get a new home.
antique dresser before refinishing

it was a perfect shape with great bones for a new sink pedestal in the kids’ bathroom.

three drawer antique dresser

the top had a ton of wear and tear, and chances are we’ll be adding some sort of slab to drop a sink into it, so i figured it was a perfect canvas to practice some new techniques!

damaged antique dresser top

i love this brassy hardware.

antique brass hardware

i started with Annie Sloan chalk paint’s Old Ochre diluted with a bit of water.  then went over with a Pure White wash.


i’ve come to really love the Swedish Gustavian look, which is a more simple take on the ornate French furniture that was popular in Europe at the time.  so, i brushed it on haphazardly to reduce any visible brush strokes, then dabbed with a dry brush, and wiped and blotted excess paint off with a soft rag.


using a coarse 0 steel wool, i wiped away any excess and sanded to have some of the wood show through.IMG_2051

i left the front unpainted as i wanted it a different color to make the piece pop.


i’m absolutely in love!

vintage dresser detail painted Annie Sloan Old Ochre wash

vintage dresser detail painted Annie Sloan Old Ochre wash

then i used Annie Sloan’s clear wax and while it was still tacky, i used a Pure white very watery wash on top of the wax.

ASCP Pure White wash over clear wax

lots more blotting, dabbing.  then i added a few drops of Coco to the Pure White wash and made the color a bit darker, and did it all again.Old Ochre and Louis Blue antique dress Annie Sloan

i figured the more layers the better.  i used Louis Blue and the same technique on the front.  dab, blot, wash, wax, wash, dab, blot, repeat.  Old Ochre and Louis Blue antique dress Annie Sloan drawer front close-up

and the results are awesome!

Annie Sloan Louis Blue Old Ochre detail

Annie Sloan Louis Blue and Old Ochre painted dresser

you can see in the photo below that the detail on the mini backsplash pops a little.  i took a tiny brush with the Pure White and went over the raised flowers and trim design.

Annie Sloan Louis Blue and Old Ochre painted dresser

this dresser is very wobbly, though, so i’m not sure it’s going to hold a toothbrush, let alone hold a sink!  i’ll have to ask a finish carpenter to take a look.

Annie Sloan Louis Blue Old Ochre detail

detailed trim work on antique dresser Annie Sloan paint

detailed trim work on antique dresser Annie Sloan paint

thanks for stopping by!

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About meesh

Meesh has a passion for people, creative projects, and technology. She enjoys painting furniture back to life, gardening, playing with her kids, and connecting people.


  1. Loving it!

  2. Danielle Driscoll says

    So pretty! I think I’m going to have to try this technique. I love the results.

  3. Ann Marie Byrd says

    I use ASCP but I haven’t tried Pure White and Old Ochre. I have a carved wooden bench that I want to paint — and I really like what you did with that White wash and Ochre paint. I’ve used plenty of Old White. Anyway, I plan to see my stockist tomorrow. Thanks for the inspiration. Ann Marie @ Iris Abbey

    • imeeshu says

      Thanks! The whitewashing definitely gives a great layered look. Good luck Ann Marie! Post a link back here when you’re done! I’d love to see it.


  1. […] love the upcycling.  So pretty! I’m in love with this gorgeous dresser that Meeshu over at I Meesh U painted.  Look at the color and those gorgeous antique pulls.  LOVE it.  I can’t wait to […]