Before & After: Annie Sloan Chalk Paint Dresser

When people ask me what the overall style of my home decor is, I typically say “rustic farmhouse,” though I’m not sure that is a real style or one that only exists in my mind. As an artist and designer, I appreciate all interior styles which sometimes can mean that my house looks as if it is having an identity crisis. I always tell folks that I buy what I like and then make it work within the room. It could be the clean lines of a cupboard or the rusty color on an old sign that inspires the entire look of a room. Overall, I just make sure that my house is inspiring and functional!

A sneak peek at my living room…built in bookcases with ironstone collection and decorating books!

My guest bedroom is probably the most feminine room in the entire house. Inspired by english cottages, the room’s color scheme is made up of soft colors such as rose, green and cream. It’s a nice sized room with lots of natural light.

Skynryd said it best…”Ooh that smell, can’t you smell that smell?” It may not smell like death, but it stinks…

When we bought our home, my mom generously gave us a beautiful antique oak dresser. I loved the overall shape of this piece, especially the bevelled mirror. The only probably is that it gave off a musty smell that I just couldn’t get rid of. What to do?

I hoard, um…I mean…I LOVE decorating books. After flipping through some french and english design books, I thought that this piece would look beautiful painted. I loved the way my step back cupboard turned out once I painted it with Annie Sloan Chalk Paint, so decided to give it another go. Plus, by covering the entire dresser in a few layers of paint, the faint musty smell would be gone forever!

Here are some photos that I found for inspiration:

Pretty pink victorian room from

Creative french typographic treatment on this antique dresser by

Very cute painted dresser from

I’ve always loved this painted dresser from Miss Mustard Seed, who now has her own line of milk paints.

So I pulled out my drop cloths, paint brushes, and old pocket radio and got to work! I’ve used all kinds of paints on furniture and I do still love the Annie Sloan chalk paint. It’s so easy to work with. You can water it down or build it up to create texture. The color palette is beautiful and offers a nice variety to choose from. The only thing I hate is the expensive price tag…$39 + $15 for shipping. And you really should seal it once painted with a nice thin coat of wax, to avoid flaking.

Here’s the after: a charming painted dresser.

I decided to go simple. No faux distressing, no glazing…just a crisp, cream colored antique dresser. I love the way it turned out. Not only does it have a softer appearance, but it really brightens up the room. Now if I could only find an old primitive bench to put at the foot of the bed….

Tell me what you think? Do you like the “before” or “after”? Have you used used Annie Sloan’s paint?

Copyright 2012. The Savvy Seeker blog by Erin Hurley-Brown. All Rights Reserved.

10 thoughts on “Before & After: Annie Sloan Chalk Paint Dresser

    • … got cut off somehow. Was about to type that it is TOOO inspiring. Looking around at stuff in my house now! How did you prep the wood surface to cover that well? Reets

      • Hey Reets! The fragrance is gone! And the hardware is original…it’s actually very tarnished and aged brass. The lovely thing about Annie Sloan chalk paint is that there is ZERO prep required. You can use it to paint on almost any kind of surface…no priming needed!! That’s why I love it and will spend the crazy cash to buy a few cans:)

  1. Hi, lovely finish. Did you use any products to remove the musty smell before you painted it? I have an old dresser that I would like to paint, but it smells yukky!

    • Hi! I aired the drawers outside for a few days when the weather was nice…and then lined them with new shelving paper. Then I tried cedar balls to get rid of any left over strange odor. The paint really did do the trick though. If your piece of furniture has a strong musty smell, I would recommend painting the interior of it as well as the outside. That should work! Good luck!

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