BEFORE and AFTER: Pink Mod Ombre Dresser

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Don’t you hate projects that kick your BUTT!

Like this $20 dresser from the thrift store:

When painting it, all the old reddish-colored stain bled through the chalk paint!

I almost threw in the towel and shouted, “Alright! That’s it! I’m scrapping this!” 




Thankfully, I took a step back and decided to let its fault be my inspiration!


Ombre mod dresser makeover from a $20 thrift store dresser


The Big Problem

The dresser was in pretty good condition on the inside, but the outside finish was chipping on top. I didn’t want to apply chalk paint on top of chipping paint, so I knew it would need some sanding to smooth it out.


Thrifted Mod Dresser BEFORE4 Thrift Diving

All sanded out and I thought it was now perfectly ready for a fresh paint job, right???



All that sanding must have “activated” and exposed even more of the old red stain. There was no stopping it from bleeding through!


I tried shellac in the spray can……no luck……I tried Kilz water-based primer…..no luck.

It bled through all over–the top and the sides! I knew that if I didn’t figure out a solution, I was going to scrap the whole thing. But it was too cute of a dresser to do that.


The Solution

After fooling around with multiple coats of paint and primer with no luck, I decided that if I couldn’t beat it, I’d fool everyone. HA!

Instead of trying to fight the red bleeding stain, I decided I would paint the dresser a shade of pink that would likely hide the bleeding red.


The Right Shade of Pink – Ombre Dresser

I had originally wanted to do a white dresser with turquoise ombre drawers. Scratch that. I needed pink.

Remember that vintage vanity I refinished recently? I used Annie Sloan Scandinavian Pink Chalk Paint on it, straight from the can, with no lightening at all.

It was kind of a “controversial” color but apparently, hardly anyone ever uses Scandinavian Pink right out of the can. It’s too….salmon. But I loved it!

Vintage Vanity 2

This time around, however, I did what most people do–mixed in some Old White Chalk Paint to soften up the shade of pink. Then I mixed in more Old White to get varying shades for the drawers.

At first, I liked it….then I hated it….and now I like it again. 🙂 These are all the struggles you don’t see, behind the scene of any DIYer. We’re quite indecisive sometimes. 🙂

Thrifted Mod Dresser BEFORE3 Thrift Diving

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Thrifted Mod Dresser BEFORE2 Thrift Diving

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I really liked the original hardware so I decided to keep it. Even though they were already gold, I spray painted the handles with gold spray paint so they were more uniformly gold and not worn looking.

Pink Ombre Mod Dresser Thrift Diving_7232

The layered look at the drawers were just begging for an ombre effect! I’ve never seen cool dresser drawers like this before. Very unique!

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I also bought this basket at the thrift store for about $3.00. I absolutely LOVE it! What a great dresser top find!

Pink Ombre Mod Dresser Thrift Diving_7251

 I love waxing furniture. As physically arduous as it can be (you’ll have biceps of steel if you wax for long enough!), the results are usually pretty shiny and impressive.

And no more chipped top!

Pink Ombre Mod Dresser Thrift Diving_7247

 So what do you think?! Do people love pink furniture as much as I hope they do? 😉 Leave a comment below!



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  1. I love this dresser! I am so glad you were able to go with the pink to hide the bleed. Super cute project! Thank you for sharing on Merry Monday! We hope you will join us again next week!

  2. Joyce Collins says:

    Serena omg! I love this. Picking a color is always a problem for me, I want to choose bold colors but afraid it wont go over as well. However, after this little beauty I’m going with my gut from here on out. Thank you for all your wonderful inspiration.

  3. I’m just curious. Why didn’t you use a oil based Kilz? I’ve always been told oil paint and stain should be primed with an oil based primer, then you can use latex paint on the oil based primer.
    Just ask Sherwin Williams, lol.

  4. LOVE LOVE LOVE the salmon pink. The piece is fantastic now! Stick it into a chippy white room and wow!

  5. Linda Louise Weeks says:

    You found the answer to that problem! I’ve had it happen too – red blled-through – gave up and decided to keep it as my laundry room piece – but the ombre effect painting is perfect! What type of wax do you use again?

  6. This turned out fabulously!! I am dealing with the same issue of stain that is hard to cover on an old 1940’s telephone table. I’m doing it in orange, so wish me luck! This came out great!

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