I’ve been painting (um, maybe experimenting on) furniture for a long time. I’ve used latex, oil-based, chalk, and spray paint. Depending on the piece of furniture and it’s construction – some are better than others – all have pros/cons.  But spray paint is by far, the easiest, cheapest and most versatile of all!

Today, I want to show you one of my favorite “Craigslist” finds. It’s a very large 9-drawer dresser made by Drexel Heritage Furniture.  A beautiful solid-wood beast with dove-tail drawers and really cool details. But, when I purchased it – the finish was a very outdated medium brown finish that didn’t match a thing we owned.

Knowing this was a quality piece and really worth much more than I paid for didn’t deter me from using spray paint on it!  Spray paints have come a long way and I’ve used many different brands.  But for a Drexel piece – only Rustoleum Ultra Cover 2x would do.  This is, in my humble opinion the best on the market. In just a few easy steps this piece was transformed and made a great addition to our master bedroom.


  1. Cleaned the entire piece with TSP – otherwise known as Trisodium Phosphate (DO NOT SKIP THIS STEP)  TSP is easy to find at any home improvement store – or even Wal-Mart.
  2. Prime the entire piece with Kilz Original Primer (also available at Wal-Mart or home improvement stores).
  3. Sprayed the dresser with my favorite spray paint: Rustoleum Ultra Cover 2X – Link to color below:
    http://www.rustoleum.com/product-catalog/consumer-brands/painters-touch-ultra-cover-2x/satin  SEE BELOW FOR TIPS ON SPRAYING
  4. Once the piece was dried I added some depth and dimension to it by adding a little bit of black acrylic paint (small craft size bottle) to a translucent glaze and used a foam brush to brush the black glaze into all the crevices and details of the dresser).
  5. Wipe excess glaze off with a clean cotton t-shirt until desired effect.
    I kept the original hardware and spray painted it black



Spray painting is an art form.  Really.  You cannot just “point and shoot”  LOL.  In order to get the result you desire – and not fumigate yourself – follow these steps as well:

  1.  First and most important – Wear a mask and use outdoors or in a very well ventilated area.  If using outdoors – best weather is very little wind/little humidity and temps between about 60-80 degrees – Not too hot.  Not too cold!
  2. Shake the can thoroughly and regularly as you are working
  3. As you begin – practice on a piece of cardboard first to make sure the paint comes out smoothly.
  4. Hold the can upright and push the button down and spray from left to right across your piece and let go of the button as you pass the end of the piece.
  5. Each time you start across from left to right push and release the spray button each time you pass.  Holding the button down continually without release will result in uneven spray and possible drips/splatters on your piece.
  6. Stop and shake the can periodically throughout the process.

If my tips are not making sense – head over to Better Homes & Gardens here and see their basic spray painting instructions.  Always Practice on cardboard or something else you don’t care about first – especially if this is your first experience armed with a can of spray paint!  And Have Fun!


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