Steve and I recently designed and styled our new condo in the Seattle area, and we are in love with our Bohemian Bedroom Reveal! But we used a lot of DIY projects in that reveal…to keep costs down, of course, but also to create a more personal design. And, we used a lot of Ikea furniture as well, and this painted dresser idea is a great way to update plain furniture pieces. This DIY dresser makeover was one of our favorite DIY’s from the bedroom, and we love how anyone can do this project! Not only that, you could create your own color scheme, use a different shape or change up your drawer hardware to fit any style bedroom. Here is our step by step before and after tutorial for our DIY dresser with our homemade chalk paint recipe!
DIY Dresser Tutorial
Painted Dresser Supplies
- Ikea wood dresser
- Pint of matte or satin paint (See chalk paint recipe below)
- Foam brushes and/or roller
- Drawer hardware
- Scrap cardboard
- Measuring tape
- Masking or painters tape
How to Make Chalk Paint with Baking Soda
So I’m kind of a lazy DIY’er, I’m always looking for a quick way to get the best outcome. Chalk paint has been known for a few years as a great way to repaint dressers and other furniture pieces without having to do all the prep and sanding… However, it can be expensive! So after a little googling and some experimentation, I made my own DIY chalk paint! Of course, you can do this project with regular acrylic paint. Just be sure to sand and possibly prime first.
DIY Chalk Paint Recipe
- 1 cup matte or satin paint
- 1/3 cup baking soda
- A few tablespoons water to mix
I started working this through with a DIY chalk paint recipe from ‘Apartment Therapy’. While they are a great resource, they warned that many people were having trouble getting the baking soda to mix into the paint without becoming a gritty mess. So I tried out a little idea. First I reduced the amount of baking soda from 1/2 cup to just 1/3 cup. Instead of mixing all ingredients together at once, I added a few tablespoons of water to just the baking soda, to dissolve it a bit first. Then I added the paint and just mixed it with a spoon, and it was perfect! I kept our homemade chalk paint in an airtight container between coats to keep it from drying out. Voila, how to make chalk paint with baking soda!
How to Repaint a Dresser with a Bohemian Vibe
So once you’ve made a decision on your paint color and hardware, the instructions for this DIY dresser are really simple!
- Find the center of the bottom drawer with a measuring tape, mark lightly with pencil.
- Apply masking or painters tape from top outside corner to the pencil mark on the bottom drawer, keeping the line as straight as possible. You are looking for an upside down triangle shape. Burnish the edge of the painters tape down with the back of a spoon to make sure the paint doesn’t bleed underneath.
- Now, simply apply your DIY chalk paint inside the taped lines! I like to use a foam brush or roller to prevent brush marks. You may need several coats depending on the color you choose. Remove the tape very carefully as soon as you finish the last coat to prevent peeling up the paint. (A great reason to use painters tape and not masking tape like I did…) If you do get a few spots that peel up, wait for the whole thing to dry. Then either place another piece of painters tape just outside the line that needs touching up and use the foam brush to fill in those spots, or just touch up the spots with an artist brush.
How to Add Pulls to a DIY Dresser
The next part is not nearly as hard as it looks… adding drawer pulls to your dresser.
- I simply marked the halfway point of each drawer with pencil using my measuring tape.
- I created a template with cardboard the same height as the drawer, and marked the center line of the template. I then marked the spot for the holes using the hardware spacing. Basically this amounts to measuring the distance between each hole on the hardware, then marking those spots on the template, keeping the center line centered. I then held the hardware up to the template to double check the hole positions and the hardware matched up.
- Tape the template onto each drawer matching the center line up on the drawer and the template. Also, double check to make sure your holes are level. Using a drill, and a drill bit slightly smaller then the screws for your drawer pulls, drill through the template and through the dresser. Repeat in the same spot for each drawer, again, matching up the center of the drawer with the center line on the template. Hint : Remove anything from the dresser drawers before you do this unless you want it covered in wood shavings. ;)
- Screw your hardware into your dresser drawers and you are done!
An updated DIY dresser idea from an inexpensive Ikea piece that has personality and chic style. If you choose, you can apply a coat of clear furniture wax to protect your painted dresser, but we haven’t and so far it has held up really well.
So that’s our DIY dresser with our homemade chalk paint recipe! Check out our post on DIY Bed Frames too! Then go see our entire Before and After Modern Boho Chic Home Reveal over at OhMeOhMy! (Hint: It has LOTS of DIY!) And, Pin for later!