Before and After: This Garage Sale Dresser Makeover Gives Us the Best Feelings

updated May 3, 2019
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This little cutie pie garage sale dresser has been hankering for a makeover for a decade—and the results are well worth the wait. Perhaps inspired by the fantastic results, the rest of this corner got itself a spruce too!

Before we gaze lovingly at the dresser as it looks today, let’s hear a little bit about what it was before:

The side tables were a garage sale find for $10 which we had bought at the start of our marriage 10 years ago. I always had plans to change them but never found the right style or inspiration to give them a makeover until I stumbled across the mid-century modern style.

I was wanting to finish our bedroom makeover that was two years in the making and the last thing was to make over the side tables.

Don’t we all have at least one piece like this—something we bought for a song because of its potential, but we’ve never quite figured out what to do with it? Maybe the next photo will inspire all of us to finally make it work (said in Tim Gunn’s voice).

This all looks so lovely. Melissa Darr of The Whimsical Wife is responsible for this makeover, and it’s all-around great. The more muted bedding shows off the impressive headboard, the new light has such a warm glow that coordinates perfectly with the wood and basket, and the nightstand itself is fantastic. Here’s how Melissa took the set from a total bargain to total beauties:

The transformation of the side tables took about three to four weekends in total from start to finish. The total cost was about $120 per table due to the fittings we chose to add to the table. We had the cladding boards cut to size at our local hardware store to save on time. Unfortunately, my measurements were out a few centimeters which resulted in us having to slightly change the design of the cladding to hide that error.

The legs were purchased at AliExpress and spray painted gold, and the solid brass knobs are from the same source. The exterior of the nightstand is painted in Dulux Vivid White, while the drawers are stained with Cabot’s Water-Based Interior Stain in Brazilian Roast and sealed with Dulux Duramax semi-gloss clear spray.

It just makes me so happy that the pink and blue in the art in this photo are basically the same as the pink and blue in the bedding and flowers in the Before photo. Melissa has a signature bedroom palette but doesn’t let it get stagnant!

I really like all the gleaming metals, and the way all the natural materials are offset by the poppy colors, just as the delicate framed piece is the counterpoint to the large painting. Fortunately, Melissa likes it all too:

I adore these tables and they are my pride and joy in my bedroom. There is nothing I would change with the makeover.

Here’s Melissa’s advice from this makeover:

Always, always measure twice before cutting anything. Even a third time if you are unsure and record the measurement correctly and easily to read on a piece of paper or on a note in your phone. This will stop you losing said piece of paper.

That’s right—the old saying should be “Measure thrice, write nice, cut once.”

Thank you, Melissa Darr and The Whimsical Wife!