Redish-brown may not be the latest trend in furniture color, but the size, shape, and construction of this solid wood antique dresser certainly has never gone out of style. One of the easiest and best ways to update the finish is with General Finishes Black Glaze over gray paint.
The dresser I worked on this week came from a senior residential care facility that was closing it’s doors. The Tidd Home, as it was known to local residents, was a a homelike facility set in a Victorian house that had been in business for more than 120 years; so it wasn’t unusual that they had many antique dressers and other furniture pieces available for sale.
I was lucky enough to find this beautiful, solid wood dresser with Hepplewhite pulls.
My original plan was to simply sand it down to remove the surface scratches and then refinish it in a black stain. But I wanted to add more dimension to the final finish so instead opted for a layered painted finish.
After sanding it down, I primed the dresser with BIN primer because at the time thought I may go with a lighter color. The BIN primer would have been necessary to block the old redish stain from bleeding through.
Then, of course, mid-refinishing I took a different route and painted it a dark gray chalk paint (like THIS). Chalk paint in any color is a super flat finish, but add to that a rather drab, dark gray and the finish is REALLY flat. It needed more.
So to add depth to the finish, I applied General Finishes Pitch Black glaze over the gray. Glaze is not difficult to use, but you have to work very quickly and in small areas.
If you only want a small amount of glaze to remain on the wood after wiping it off, then before adding the glaze, add a clear coat of water-based polyurethane. The clear coat will make the surface slick and allow more of the glaze to be removed. Knowing I wanted more of the glaze to stay on the dresser for a darker finish, I skipped the clear coat step.
As you can see, the dresser is isn’t a stark black, but instead a very, very dark gray with shades of the lighter gray peeking through.
And if you look really close (see the bottom of the middle drawer), you’ll see how I very, very lightly distressed a few edges to maintain some of the antique integrity of the piece.
Instead of using sandpaper, when I was wiping the glaze off with a cotton rag, I rubbed much harder along the edges of the drawer to remove enough of the glaze so the lighter gray tone showed through even more in those areas.
Ooooh… and those Hepplewhite pulls are some of my favorite. You can find similar ones on Amazon HERE. The originals were really tarnished. Cleaning them would have revealed a dull brass which is not my favorite against dark gray. Instead, I spray painted them silver, then very lightly sprayed on a hint of matte black spray paint.
I wish this last photo did justice to the varying color tones; but trust me, it’s stunning in person.
This antique dresser with Hepplewhite pulls is now for sale in Entri Ways’ online Shop.
Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links to products I use myself.