The Faux Bone Inlay Dresser

If you haven’t figured it out yet, my favorite pieces of furniture to work on are dressers (or Chest of drawers.. whatever floats your boat). They tend to be pretty simple projects with little to no surprises and I can USUALLY get them in and out of “To-do” pile pretty quickly. But every now and then I’m a glutton for punishment and decided to complicate things a little for myself.

The inspiration for this piece came from a picture that I saw in this magazine and I had been wanting to do a design like this for awhile but it looked… tedious.


So I have been waiting for the right dresser to be my “canvas”.

Yes, I am picky about which design and paint color will be on which piece.

I’ve noticed that if I try to force a piece of furniture to wear a certain color or design before I have thoroughly walked past it and looked at it a trillion times, I always end up re-painting it…

Not exactly good business practice but I’m a creative first and a business owner second.

So this was more about satisfying my creativity.

I forgot to take a “Before” picture but I found this a picture of a dresser online that looks almost exactly like how mine was. Mine was in just slightly rougher state.




I had to pry the drawers out of the body of the dresser before I started painting… Old furniture does just warp over time but this was a totally fixable thing. A pain but fixable.

So the fun part. If you’ve read my blog before you know that I have a small thing for Miss Mustard Seed’s Milk Paint.

Okay, FINE. I’m having a full on love affair with it. I use it for most my painting projects.

I did use MMS Milk Paint for part of the project but for the base I used Valspar “Lincoln Cottage Black” in Matte finish. This is my most favorite black shade of all black shades. If the project calls for black I use “Lincoln Cottage Black”. You can have it mixed at other locations other than Lowe’s and with different paint brands but I believe it is a retired color so you might need to look up it’s ID number online here.  Online, it reads gray but does not have that effect in person.

So after cleaning and one coat of Lincoln Cottage Black was all this dresser needed to beginning with. It had a rough finish on it so no sanding was necessary.

I’m not gonna lie.. I contemplated stopping here. The black was lookin pretty darn good by itself. The road ahead was long and if I was gonna do this design I was gonna have to commit ALL THE WAY… Sooo… I continued.

Next was laying out a design. I free-handed some lines and twists with some chalk and went back over them with Miss Mustard Seed’s Milk Paint with a mix of half and half Ironstone and Farmhouse White. I used a smaller brush and painted little petals and buds along the lines and swirls.



………………. 2 HOURS LATER………………….

“UGHHHHHHHHH. I’m over this.”

A single drawer is done. ONE! ONE DRAWER. I HAVE THE WHOLE PIECE TO COMPLETE and this single drawer took 2 hours.

Alright… most of that time was trying to figure the design and lines but it I was figuring out how long this project was going to take.



So I decided to handle this project in bite-size pieces. I worked on it when I could. I started with one drawer and completely finished it and than copied the other two to look as close to the first as possible. I used that same method for the rest of the piece.

So I painted.

And Painted.


And Painted.


Then… finally… On Monday, August 21st at 12:35 p.m. I had completed the hand painting portion of this project.

And the heavens SANG!

Not really.. But a full Eclipse was put in motion because of it.. Maybe you heard?

But even though that part was OVER doesn’t mean I was done… Next was fixing this stuck Drawer problem…

That requires sanding…

I hate sanding.

So I sanded down the sides of the drawers using a low-grit sand paper.



For extra insurance, another trick I use on old drawers that have a tendency to get stuck is wax. I rub a spoon full of solid candle wax up and down the edges of the drawers and inside the dresser where the edges of the drawers slide back and forth.




You can use this candle wax trick at home too if you have a dresser that’s drawers don’t come in and out as smoothly as they should.

Almost done!!

I then gave the entire piece a light, LIGHT, distressing. The hand painted detail was already done lightly so I really didn’t have to point effort into getting the look that I was going for.

As always, I finished the dresser with one coat of Minwax Polycrylic Protective Finish in Matte.




For the finishing touch I added my knobs that I got from Hobby Lobby. That was an adventure in and of itself.




I really love how the piece turned out.. It was a lot of work but it really turned out beautiful.








As of right now The Faux Bone Inlay Dresser already has a buyer but if that falls through it will be available at the ZINC. Vintage Market in Crozet Virginia, September 8th – 10th.

If it does sell before ZINC and you are completely heart broken well guess what I am

working on a smaller back-up.


Yes, my mother had me tested. Why?

I am going to attempt to have another blog post up tomorrow with more items that will be coming to ZINC but for now I hope you enjoyed this post. K, Bye.

– Amanda



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