I almost forgot to post this decoupage and painted dresser re-do! It was the first piece I tried this technique on months ago, and I got so busy setting up my DIY shop Redo Your Furniture (aka Frame and Frills) I totally forgot that I hadn’t posted about it here.
Since this first piece, I’ve done this decoupage and painting technique on several pieces of furniture, trays and even a door to the Frame and Frills workroom! It is a blast to do, though this first one did have a learning curve!
I picked up this antique dresser for around $25. I love the simple styling of it, though the original hardware was gone and replaced with new, I could remedy that easy enough.
First thing I always do before painting is clean the piece I’m going to paint. It’s important that the dirt, dust grease etc. that’s visible, or invisible to the eye, is removed so that the paint can adhere well to the actual surface of the piece of furniture.
To clean this piece and every piece I do, I used Fusion TSP Alternative. It cleans amazingly well and doesn’t leave any residue, so no rinsing is necessary.
Bonding Agent: Ultra Grip…
This particular dresser’s old finish seemed really hard and glossy like an oil finish, so just to be safe, since it was going into the shop and would get wear and tear, after I was done cleaning it, I applied a quick thin coat of Ultra Grip.
Ultra Grip is an amazing bonding agent. It looks milky white in the bottle, but quickly dries clear. It’s important to not over work it. Because it dries fast, if you put it on too thick or over work it, there is a possibility of it drying with texture and brush marks.
It’s also important to allow a bit of curing time for the Ultra Grip before you paint over it. I like to wait 12-24 hours.
Paint the Base Color
The next day I painted the dresser with a coat of ‘Ash’, a soft black. Where the Windmill Paper was going to be applied, I painted a lighter color so that the design on the paper, (which is somewhat translucent) would show well.
I let this painted surface sit a day or two before I proceeded to decoupage on it. That just gives it time to cure then if I need to left the paper in the decoupaging process to readjust it, the paint has a better chance of not peeling up with the paper.
Time to Decoupage…
Starting at the top of the dresser front, I painted on a coat of Fusion Decoupage Gel, and then laid and smoothed the paper over it.
Two things I’ve learned from this project is to work in smaller sections than I did for this dresser piece, and to apply the gel in a thinner coat helps to avoid large wrinkles in the paper.
Section by section, I moved down the length of the paper, working horizontally.
I used a wad of ‘Cling Wrap’ to smooth the paper! It slides smoothly over the paper so as to not rip it.
To speed up the drying time, I used a hairdryer that I have the Frame and Frills workroom stocked with for the DIY workshop classes.
Cutting it free…
After the paper was dry, using a totally brand new razor, I sliced the cracks between the dresser frame and drawers.
After each drawer was ‘freed’ from the dresser, there was trimming that needed to take place. See the excess of paper on each drawer? That’s actually ok… In fact good…
I made a quick video to show you how I trim the edge of the paper:
To have a little excess paper over the edge is easy to trim off using this tip:
If there wasn’t excess paper, and I had tried to cut each piece before I put it onto the door, it would have been much more difficult to get a perfect fit.
Painting details on the rest of the dresser front.
Now that the paper is dried and trimmed, it was time to add a little more paint to the front to blend in this paper design to encompass the entire front of the dresser.
I thought I videotaped the painting part, but unfortunately something went hay-wire in the recording and it didn’t record. Next time!!
It was really pretty easy though. Using a brush, sponge and damp paper towels, I blotted and dabbed just following the colors and shapes on the edges of the paper, extending the design out across the entire dresser front.
This is what my mixing plates I was working from looked like at the end of the project.
A few more details…
I found vintage hardware that was more in the the antique style of the dresser.
The final topcoat I finished this dresser with was a couple quick coats of Tough Coat. That sealed the decoupage paper front and gave the top of the dresser extra protection. (HERE is a post I wrote showing how I apply Tough Coat to ensure a streak free finish)
I found the book/magazine rack piece that’s set on top of the dresser to actually hold the decoupage papers I stick in the Frame and Frills shop. Painted in ‘Ash’ as well, it was the perfect fit for the top of this now decoupaged and painted dresser!
This dresser is a great way to display the decoupage papers available in the shop. It’s a fun example for clients to see. The sunflower table and poppy tray are both examples of the decoupage workshops you can take at the Frame and Frills workshop, but all the papers are available for you to do on your own if you want too!
The Windmill Decoupage Paper, Decoupage Gel and Fusion Mineral Paints I used in this project are available in my shop Frame and Frills. You can shop in person or online.
You can also find me at my shop, Frame and Frills, stocked with amazing DIY products like Fusion Mineral Paint, Stencils, Mint by Michelle decoupage papers and ReDesign with Prima Rub-on Transfers in the shop. You can shop in person or online.
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