It was a free Craigslist find. Of course the lady listed as being "solid oak" and it turns out to be "pine with drawers made of plywood" but free is free. And mostly, once I was already there, I was a little embarrassed to say "pass" - does anyone else have that problem?
So I took the baby home. The drawer is actually not missing, I had already started sanding it when I remembered to take the "before" shot. That drawer was missing a handle though. The previous owner had basically stopped using the dresser because the drawers weren't aligned. I thought I would have to fix the drawer slides, but it turns out that she just didn't know how to put them back on properly. Less than a minute and they were all fixed.
The dresser would obviously look good and cottage-y with some white paint and oil rubbed bronze handles - but why would I go the obvious route when I can try my hand at something different? And complicated?
Not to mention, I am really tired of priming thanks to some bookshelves I have been working on all summer.
I have really been loving the lightened wood look. When I was searching for the finish that I wanted to do, I came across lots of cool techniques like limewash, ceruse, bleaching, pickeling. However, most of them didn't have very good how-tos online, or (in the pickeling case) didn't give me the finished look that I wanted. So I ultimately decided to try a whitewash technique that will still show the grain of the wood through - but make it look more like driftwood.
I drew inspiration for the whitewash from this post Coastal-Style, Distressed Wood Flag Tutorial at The Lettered Cottage. I loved how the wood looked in this shot:
The color of driftwood - right? I went to Home Depot a couple of days ago and picked up a Martha Stewart paint color called "Driftwood Grey" in a tester size.
I have done a little sample paint on the dresser and so far like the color, but it looks a little too light, so I might have to do a couple of coats with a darker grey. Or even mix in a bit of dark blue that I have on hand. Then I want to maybe do a glaze or stain on top. Haven't quite decided. Mostly because I'm still in the sanding process. I had to go to Lowe's today and pick up a sanding block since I was tearing my hands up with trying to do the details with a piece of sandpaper. I don't know if it will work better - I've always read to "sand with the grain" but on some spots that's really hard to do.