Pottery Barn Dresser Reveal

You’ll love this Pottery Barn dresser lookalike! See where it started and how far it’s come.

Finished Pottery Barn dresser lookalike 

Free dresser and nightstand

I answered an ad on my local Freecycle website and agreed to pick up a dresser and nightstand “sight unseen”.  Imagine how thrilled MyLove was when I begged and pleaded persuaded him to drive 20 miles across town to meet with a stranger to pick it up. #notthrilledatall.

Luckily, he is used to me and my furniture requests so he went along with it…until we drove up and saw this dreadful sight.

Dresser and nighstand in bad shape
The lady raved about what an heirloom it was to her and thanked us for coming to pick them up so quickly as she snuck over to take a $100 For Sale sign off of them so we would not see them.  She mentioned that they were passed down through her family and her husband started sanding on the dresser top then suddenly passed away.

Nasty looking dresser
As I mentioned, I got them off of Freecycle so they were “Free-Ninety-Nine” as my friend would say. Thank goodness, because they were looking pretty old and shabby, and not in the “shabby chic” kind of way.

I looked over at MyLove rolling his eyes and could feel his blood boiling, secretly cursing me all the way to the truck. Because these suckers were HEAVY, solid wood SUPER HEAVY!

And did I mention they were UGLY! Excuse the shadow πŸ˜›

Another look at the dresser
We passed two Goodwill stores on the way home and MyLove begged me to drop them off and donate them right away.  

but I talked him into letting me keep them because I somehow could already see their POTENTIAL. He agreed to let me try.

Battered dresser corner


He saw YUCK, (or may I say in his words),  CR@P!

I saw Pottery Barn.

I don’t know why, but I have been eyeballing a black Pottery Barn dresser and wanted to try to replicate it. Seriously, why not? Couldn’t hurt.

Learning how to achieve the Pottery Barn look

I found a great tutorial explaining how to achieve the Pottery Barn Finish from The Yellow Cape Cod and followed it step by step to a “T”!

She has done such a fabulous job of explaining how to, that I am just going to show you the progress through my pictures.

I FIRST took the backside off and laid the dresser and drawers out in the sun for a week. I also cleaned every nook and cranny with a vacuum and wiped it all down with paint thinner.

It definitely needed some cosmetic work, so I stripped off all of the odd moldings and replaced them with new moldings.

Removing old moldings
Look at those perfect corners!

New moldings
I took off the cabinet doors and stripped off the old ugly hardware too.

Dresser hardware
I sanded and sanded the top some more for what seemed like forever. The husband must have used a belt-sander and sanded sideways because I never got all of the deep gouges and grooves out. I did the best I could and got a little sidetracked from my painting tutorial and stained the top Minwax Dark Walnut stain.

Dresser top stained with Minwax Dark Walnut stain
It turned out pretty nice, considering what I had to work with.

Another look at the stained dreser top 
Back to the painting tutorial: I sanded, primed, painted, sanded more, painted more, sanded more between coats, distressed the edges, step by step!

Dresser work in progress


But it was SO worth it!

Related: Metallic Silver Bombay Dresser Makeover

Primed and ready to paint

Pottery Barn Dresser Reveal

Check out the before and after! WOW!


Dresser before and after updating

It looks so different with new baskets and Hardware (both purchased 50% off at Hobby Lobby). I envision its new life as a brand “new to me” Media Cabinet.

Upcycled media cabinet
The piece looks way more updated, don’t you think?

Check out the hardware before and after: looks a little like Fleur de Lis (LOVE)

Dresser hardware before and after updating
And check out my handiwork with a little help from MyLove: from ugly to updated corners: mow distressed and stylish!

Corner of dresser before and after the update
I am impressed with the results and as it does appear a little different than my Pottery Barn Inspiration Piece I am ecstatic with the results!
I’ll leave you with a couple more beauty shots. Enjoy!  Happy Treasure Hunting!

Pottery Barn dresser reveal

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