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Weather Beaten Lime Green Dresser Makeover

When I posted my hardware makeover on Monday I promised to show you how it looked on the triple dresser.

I’m so excited that I finally finished it. I was worried that I wasn’t going to get it done in time because it was incredibly windy here on Sunday and we had a couple of power outages.

But luck prevailed and here it is. Yay!!!

I’ve never worked with chalk paint before… homemade or store bought, but for this piece I decided to go for it. I’m always up for trying a new paint treatment.

Here’s a sneak peek at the finished dresser.


Painted and Distressed Dresser Makeover

Here’s what it looked like before. It was originally a wood laminate from John’s bachelor days in the early 1980’s. The emerald green is the colour of the year now, but I can no longer stand it after about 18 years. It was long overdue for a change.


You can find homemade chalk paint recipes all over the internet but here’s the one I used.

1 part Plaster of Paris ( because I had some on hand)
1 part warm water
1 part paint

I mixed the plaster and warm water first and then added the green paint once it was nice and smooth. I didn’t actually do any measuring I just guesstimated.

One thing I did learn about homemade chalk paint is to just make what you’re going to need. The next day it had solidified, and even though I could add water to it and mix it up again it wasn’t usable…. it was way too gritty. So I had to make up a new batch for the second coat.

Painted and Distressed Dresser Makeover

This chalk paint covered the old melamine paint beautifully, but it was a little gritty. I probably didn’t mix the plaster and water enough before I added the paint and used it. I can be a little impatient at times. Who me? lol.

Not sure what was going on with the light the day I took these pics because the colour came out very yellow. This is soooo wrong!!! It’s a lime green. You’ll see that the colour looks more true down below.

This is after two coats of the green chalk paint, and then I sanded. Because I couldn’t work on it outside I put the dresser on an old painting sheet and it collected the paint dust, and then I just rolled it up and took it outside and shook it out.

I did all the sanding by hand, slow and steady. Then I used dry paper towels to push the paint dust off the top and wipe if off of the rest of the dresser, and it just fell nicely onto the sheet. The paint dust was heavy enough that it didn’t go everywhere like drywall dust will.

I let it sit for a few days and then I wiped it with lightly dampened paper towels to get any leftover residue off so it would be paint dust free before I started the dry brushing.

Painted and Distressed Dresser Makeover

Now, I’m a girl who loves colour and needs it too actually… so here’s my dry brushing paint palette for this project. I didn’t use chalk paint for the dry brushing.

I just dipped my brush in the paint and wiped it off on the newsprint so there wasn’t too much on the brush. It couldn’t be easier, and the paint dries very fast this way.



First I went at the dresser with the Caribbean blue.

I had no plan here… I just went for it. I have a tendency to over think things, which can make projects more complicated than they really are. Now I’ll have to think about why I do that! lol.

So with this makeover I decided to just go for it… with no fear, and no second guessing.


Painted and Distressed Dresser Makeover

Then I dry brushed some of the robin’s egg blue here and there (it’s the colour on the walls), and the Caribbean blue on the top (a little heavier).

Painted and Distressed Dresser Makeover

Then the lime green on the top again and a bit here and a bit there. I’m trying to create layers of colour, with bits of the different blues peeking out from the green.

I’m not taking this too seriously at all… just having fun. I want it to look weathered and a little beaten up.

I’m just doing this for myself so whatever happens happens. If I was doing this for someone else that would be a completely different story… I’m sure I’d be a nervous wreck!!


Painted and Distressed Dresser Makeover

I did a little sanding between dry brushing where I thought it needed it. No rhyme or reason.

And here it is!! The dresser all finished… according to me anyway. Ha! I’m no expert, but this is just the look I was going for.

Painted and Distressed Dresser Makeover

If you’re looking at these photos in a room with fluorescent lights you may want to put on your sunglasses. lol. The colour shows as much brighter than it actually is.

Painted and Distressed Dresser Makeover

Yikes… a little too much sun coming in the room in this pic below. It’s not that blindingly bright… but I was sooo happy to see the sun on an otherwise gloomy day so I wasn’t going to complain.

Painted and Distressed Dresser Makeover

The layers of blue and green paint really give the top some colour depth. Look at me… sounding like I might know what I’m talking about. Or not. lol.

Painted and Distressed Dresser Makeover
This makeover was very easy, but very time consuming because of all the steps. And I have to admit that I tinkered with the dry brushing a lot until I got it to look just the way I wanted it to.
Painted and Distressed Dresser Makeover

I think I was just enjoying the process… it reminded me of finger painting when I was a little girl. I felt so creatively free, and was having such a blast!! I almost didn’t want it to end!!

Painted and Distressed Dresser Makeover

I love the way the blue and white distressed hardware looks on this dresser. I think all white would have looked too perfect. If you missed my hardware makeover post you can find it here.

The close up below is the truest to the real colour. Photos taken from a distance make the green look more yellow than it is.

Painted and Distressed Dresser Makeover

This is the first time I’ve ever distressed a piece of furniture, and I’m very happy with the way it looks. The colour is so fun and alive, and it fits in perfectly with my French Caribbean guest room makeover.

I don’t plan to finish it with anything because I really love it’s weathered and worn look, and I think anything we do to it while using it will just add to its charm.

Thanks so much for reading! Have a happy and colourful day!


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  1. This looks awesome, Tuula! I can see how proud you are of finishing this wonderful piece. It certainly is very stylish with today's trend of using bright colors in decor. I wouldn't be surprised if this project is featured in a magazine or on Hometalk! Great Job!

  2. Whooaaah! Tuula, that is just awesome! I'm so envious of your ability to overcome the over thinking it. I just cannot get there! Your hardware looks great against those colors too! I did want to ask how much of the homemade paint you used for each coat, so I don't make too much. I want to do a buffet that looks about the same size.

  3. I WANT THAT DRESSER! es, I am screaming at you. what a fantastic transformation. The dresser looks great against the blue walls. My expectations for this room grow more intense as you reveal each element!

  4. I love layered paint treatments – they make a piece look so fabulous!! Great job!

  5. Tuula – it looks amazing – i love the layers of colours! Amazing result! I use the same recipe for chalk paint but I mix it with an old braun mixer I got for $3 at a thrift store – if you blend it really well – it stays liquid and useable for days (and even weeks if you seal it in a jar with a tight lid)
    Peggy @ The Painted Pear

  6. Stopping over from Beyond the Picket Fence. I think your dresser is awesome! Love the layered colors 🙂

  7. well didn't that come up awesome. I really want to try chalk paint but having said only make what you need how much paint do you think you used?

  8. Aren't layered paint treatments the most fun thing ever to do! You did a great job and I can't believe that's your first try at it. The chalk paint recipe I use calls for 2 parts latex paint to 1 part plaster of Paris. I add enough warm water to thin it to regular paint consistency. I seems to keep okay for a couple of weeks in a sealed container and I don't get any lumps if I mix it well.

  9. That, my friend, is over the top gorgeous!!!
    I'd love to do a fun piece like this – unfortunately the only thing that sells for me is boring Paris Grey and White, seriously………………
    I had a dresser that didn't sell for over a year – just repainted it in grey and white – and it sold in 2 days……….:(

  10. I love it!! I have an old dresser I'm going to paint lime green also (but with silver hardware) and I am glad to see that I am not the only one who isn't afraid of COLOR (that was meant as a "yell")! Found you through My Repurposed Life's Catch as Catch Can 117…

    Cher @ Designs by Studio C

  11. Thank you for linking up to The CSI Project. I am glad you enjoyed the project and I think you are so brave for picking such a bold colour 🙂

  12. Wow! Quite the transformation. I picked up an old dresser at thrift store yesterday to chalk paint into a TV cabinet. I use plaster of paris too (1 part pp, 1 part water, 2 parts paint is the recipe I use) and find it works well- but after my first attempt was gritty I started blending my plaster and water in my Magic Bullet before mixing it with my paint. I know, crazy right? but it gets really smooth that way!! And stays smooth, I let it sit for days in a sealed contained and it is good to take out and use again. Thanks for sharing your fun dresser remake.
    Krista @thehappyhousie

  13. Oh my! What a terrific upcycle. I love the "after" color…. The handles are my favorite! You just go ahead and pat yourself on the back, OK?

    Wishing you a terrific week… 🙂

    hugs x
    Crystelle Boutique

  14. OMG, what a dazzling piece of furniture…green/blue combo is my favorite, especially lime and aqua! This has to be my favorite of any painted furniture I have seen…wonder how those colors would look on a hutch? Thanks for sharing.

  15. You did a great job layering the paint! Love the painted hardware with the blue and green! Thank you for sharing at Rustic Restorations Weekend!

  16. I like this color combo! It looks Caribbean. Would go fantastic in a beachy cottage.

  17. This is so amazing!! I am in love with the color!! Wow, you did a fantastic job. Just pinned and tweeted. Thank you so much for sharing at A Bouquet of Talent this week. Have a wonderful weekend. 🙂

  18. I absolutely LOVE this color combo Tuula! Thank you so much for sharing your gorgeous dresser with us at the Pretty Things party at twelveOeight. Hope to see you again tonight for another great party 🙂

    xo, Tanya

  19. What a lovely color that is!! It's soooo gorgeous!! What green did you use?