Most of you probably don't know that I am a "garbage picker" - I have rescued chairs from a neighbor's garbage and, with hubby's assistance, refinished them and reupholstered them. So, I thought nothing of jumping at an old dresser on my local Freecycle group. We REALLY needed some storage in our living/dining room to get some kid games and some puzzles out of sight and out of my china cabinet.
I wish I had taken some "before" pictures, but I just plain forgot in my excitement to get to it. Just imagine your average real wood dresser, probably from the 50's, that had been in someone's garage for a while. A little dusty, a little musty, but overall in decent shape. We removed a mirror from it that we don't need or have room for, and I started stripping. I happen to have a short attention span, and hubby is a procrastinator, so while I started things, he wound up finishing. He used a black Minwax stain on it, which turned out pretty well as it matches the chairs I rescued from the neighbor's garbage.
Originally, I had wanted to cover the drawer fronts with old maps (or paper that looks like a map) because this big room has a kind of France/travel theme. (I'm convinced that if I expose hubby to it daily that eventually he'll take me there!) I couldn't find anything near what I envisioned, but I happened upon some travel paper on clearance at my local Michael's that I thought was pretty cool. It's a K&Co paper called On The Road Luggage Labels. It has the vintage travel feel I was going for, and the colors worked. So, here's how it turned out:
The bonus to the paper design is that it's difficult to see the seams, so I just left them straight, no messing with overlapping cuts, etc. I just brushed on my Mod Podge, laid on the papers, smoothed them out, then topped with more Mod Podge. Quick & Easy!
Here's a closeup, so I can show you what I did with the knobs:
I picked up these knobs a while back from the $1 bins at Michael's. Because they were glossy bright white, they didn't really match the vintage feel of the dresser and paper design. So, I whipped out a sponge and some Staz-on ink in Timber Brown and "dirtied " them up a little bit.
We've already got those drawers loaded with games & puzzles, and things are looking considerable neater. If you've got an old piece of furniture you're looking to rescue, I highly recommend the "Mod Podge method" - it can cover up all manner of imperfections!