I’ve always wanted a makeup vanity! But I don’t have a place for one, so I guess painting and selling them is the next best thing.
A friend sent me a picture of this brown painted vanity, and said either I could try to fix it up, or they were going to burn it. I stopped by the next day and rescued it. It was actually in really good vintage shape. Lucky me!
It was previously painted brown, but the paint was well-adhered and not peeling so I gave it a light scuff sanding and cleaned it well with White Lightning and water. There were a few areas I filled in with Dixie Mud – some dings on the top, the grooves on the drawers and the screw holes for the old pulls.
Here are all the products I used.
(Note: These are affiliate links for which I earn a small commission at no extra cost to you. Thanks for your support!)
- Vanity (rescued)
- White Lightning
- Dixie Mud (white)
- Sand Bar
- Drop Cloth
- Moonshine Metallics Gold Digger
- Voodoo Gel Stain Tobacco Road
- No Pain Gel Stain Espresso
- Mineral spirits (hardware store)
- Redesign with Prima Rose & Rouge décor transfer (Amazon or Etsy)
- Clear Coat Flat
- Pink Champagne (inside drawers, not pictured)
- Coral knobs (Hobby Lobby)
If you want tons of information on Dixie Belle paint and products, you can check out this Comprehensive Guide post, and you can download it free here by clicking the picture:
Pounced Paint Finish
This technique is great for hiding damage or texture. I used four paint colors (Burlap, Sand Bar, Drop Cloth and Fluff) and a small round synthetic brush.
With all the colors open, I dipped lightly into one of them and pounced the paint in an area. Then I dipped in the next color and pounced again, overlapping the previous area a bit. I used the same brush for all the colors. My goal was to blend it into a dreamy soft color variation without any harsh lines, but also to leave some texture.
If you want to see a demonstration of this technique, you can check out my Facebook Live tutorial. I did 2 coats with the pouncing technique.
Painting & Staining the Top
Friends, I really had no idea what I was doing on the top. I started by painting it Burlap. Then I used some Voodoo Gel Stain in Tobacco Road applied heavier in some areas and lighter in others with the blue sponge applicator.
I planned to top that with an even coat of No Pain Gel Stain in Espresso and be done. I thought this would give a faux wood look, with some interesting variation.
I did those steps, but it still didn’t look quite right to me, so I tried pulling back some of the espresso stain with mineral spirits. Nope. Now the variation was really harsh, and with the soft look of the paint finish, I wanted a soft look for the top as well.
I tried a wash of Fluff, but that brought out some gray tones that didn’t go well at all. So I added a thin even coat of Tobacco Road, and that finally did the trick.
All the Pretty Things
The floral designs are the Redesign with Prima Rose & Rouge décor transfer. They come on a plastic sheet, and you rub them with a little stick to transfer them onto the piece. I cut it apart and pieced it back together to create a balanced design.
The coral knobs came from Hobby Lobby. Those top two “drawers” aren’t actually drawers. That’s why I left the original handles on there; they are stationary.
I painted them in Moonshine Metallics Gold Digger. Rather than brushing it on back and forth, I pounced the metallic and that kept it from being too sheer and showing brush strokes.
I neglected to take pictures of the insides of the drawers, but they were originally painted purple. I painted them Pink Champagne, which blended nicely with the exterior colors.
Lastly, I sealed the whole piece with Clear Coat Flat.
If you liked this project, you may enjoy these as well:
French Provincial Bedroom Furniture Makeover
Romantic Shabby Chic Side Tables
As always, if you learned anything or were inspired here, Please Pin!
15 thoughts on “Vintage Vanity Makeover”
You sure turned an ugly duckling into a swan. I had a hard time getting past that brown paint job!
I know – the brown was not pretty!
That is absolutely beautiful and amazing. I’ve featured it today at the TFT link party. 🙂
Thank you, Pam! I appreciate your comments and the feature!
Such a beautiful makeover! Thanks so much for sharing at the Snickerdoodle Create Bake Make Link Party!!! I’m featuring your vanity at this weekend’s party!
Thanks so much!
This is very well done, I especially love the wood top and appreciate your describing how you worked with it, until it was the way you want it.
Thanks, Leanna! Yep, it’s not always a straight line from A to Z as I’m sure you’ve experienced too!
This vanity is stunning! I just adore antique vanities, especially when they are well done to keep their charm. Great job!
Thanks, Sarah! I was really happy to rescue this one!
Very Pretty. Great job.
Thanks for stopping by!
Gorgeous makeover! The top looks like natural stained wood. Love the transfer and the placement.
Thanks, Marie! I always appreciate your feedback!