Just keep swimmin, just keep swimmin….

Back in February, I started a DIY project. I wanted to have matching night stands and a dresser for our master bedroom. After reading lots of YHL and Bower Power (among other blogs…. you should see my Google Reader… it’s ridiculous) I decided “Hey, I can knock this out in a weekend.”

Oh, so very very VERY wrong. I found a pine dresser with matching nightstands for all of $100 on Craigslist. Here they are, in all there non-glory-pine-wood state.

BEFORE picture.

With my aunt and uncles van in tow, I picked it up after work. I gathered all my supplies which included a water based deglosser gel — red flag #1. Getting in over my head? No way… Do you know how many times I’ve read “how to stain your pine dresser” instructions?! I printed them out, read blog entries over and over and over again… Thinking all the while, I can do this.

Which I did but it took F-O-R-E-V-E-R. Yes, I was the one on the back porch in the cold with a headlamp at 11 pm. Yes, I was the one scraping that deglosser trying to get the old finish and stain off. Yes, I was the one who looked like a dump truck drove by me leaving me in the cold.

Once the deglosser was done (which DID NOT work as well as I had planned. And I did follow the directions to a T… which is big for me since my hubby always gives me a hard time for missing ingredients on a recipe… another day). The lady at Lowe’s said explicitly… “You have to let it sit for the FULL 20 minutes in order for it to work.” Yes ma’am. I can do that. Which I did… for a total of at LEAST 3 times. When we are talking 8 drawers, dresser, AND 2 nightstands… that’s a lot of painting and a LOT of waiting.

Then came the sanding. Oh, boy. I should have bought my own from the get go but I borrowed one. I went through at least 4 packages of sanding paper of all different grits. I worked my way up from 100 or 120 (can’t remember) to 220.  My trusty literature said that anything lower than 100 was not good for the pine since it was a soft wood.

After piles of sand dust later, I began the staining/painting. I drew pintspiration from here and here. I wanted to make our room lighter but still keep a warm, wood tone. So I decided to paint the outer shells white and stain the drawer fronts.

Here’s my mood board. I have since changed our duvet to plain white since I have a duvet issue. (There are just so many cool ones out there! I just need to play with pillows, not duvets. That gets pricey). I need to revamp the mood board since the media cabinet and canvas/elephants are now in the living room.

Mood board from back in the day….

Blarg. They didn’t dry right. Then it was Spring Break… note: it is now MARCH. Nicolas and I went out of town for a getaway. My LOVELY-BEST-GREATEST-SPECTACULAR-WONDER-WOMAN of a mom RESTAINED all the drawer fronts WITH the polyurethane. God bless her soul. I did not ask her to do it but since we are both helpers by nature she did it and man, they looked killer. When we got back from vacation I not only had a CLEAN house but COMPLETED drawers… staining, sanding, painted and all. She actually repainted the shells with a white gel trim painter that is stuff from the old Greek gods it’s so brilliant. It’s what we painted our dark brown mantle with (that’s a different post).

They’ve  been done for months. I still have yet to finish the drawer pulls. *sigh* Just keep swimmin’, just keep swimmin,….