Lovely Linen


I had my eye on this one on Marketplace for a week or so before I made an offer. I loved the carved details, even if I didn’t love the orangy wood color. It had $100 on it at first, but I couldn’t bring myself to pull the trigger. When it dropped to $50, I knew it was meant for me.

When I got it home and got the drawers out, I noticed one of the drawer slides was missing. 😕 but that didn’t bother my kids, who used the drawers as a vanishing cabinet, since they were just the right height to fit my 3-year old in!

I looked around for drawer glides like this, but most of them had angled sides, not flat. While I looked, I started painting, because I’m just impatient like that. But I’ll show you how I fixed it first.

I looked around to see where other people said they found theirs, but a lot of people said they made their own, so off to YouTube I went! Here’s the video I found by Jami Ray Vintage, which has also helped me with a couple of other dressers with structural issues I thought I couldn’t fix, and now I think I can save them!

Here’s what I made:

Disclaimer: I have included some affiliate links so you can find the products I used and start some projects of your own! They don’t cost you any more, but it gives me a kickback. 🙂

It’s not that pretty, but it’s functional! I used some leftover hardboard like this from Menards that is about 1/8 in thick. I used my jigsaw to cut it to the right size. I cut a 1×4 scrap to the right length with my chop saw, then used the jigsaw again to get the right width. (The width of the boards doesn’t matter as much as the space between them where the other part slides.) I also had to grind down the wood to the right depth because it was about an eighth of an inch too deep to fit in the dresser. Then I glued and stapled the sides onto the hard board, and finally, I glued and nailed it to the drawer.

Paint time!

Here’s what I did on the outside:

The body and outer edges of the drawers was done in Dixie Belle’s French Linen, and the lighter inner part is Sawmill Gravy. These drawers had odd shapes to blend—I think I re-did some about 3 or 4 times till I got it right.

The top I sanded down to raw wood, and I kinda liked it! I love the rusticness of raw wood tops.

Then I had to decide whether I wanted to do the detailed carved parts in a lighter or darker color. My instinct said darker, but the original finish had them lighter, with I liked, too. I did both to see how I’d feel.

Left: Gravel Road; right: Sawmill Gravy

I ended up going with the dark, but toning it down just a tad by mixing the dark Gravel Road with French Linen.

Next, I added some low lights of the gravel road/French linen mix in the crevices of the body, and Sawmill gravy highlights on the raised parts. Then I painted a top coat of Varathane’s water-based Matte polyurethane. I also added some Dixie Belle Best Dang Wax in brown to the crevices and dark areas of the front and sides.

In the picture above, you can kinda tell the difference between the right and left sides—I dry-brushed the highlights on the right with Sawmill Gravy. Pretty subtle, but gives it a slight pop.

As for the top, I decided to stain it darker, and I LOVE it! I used a combination of Rustoleum’s Briar Smoke and Dark Walnut, which I saw someone do on Pinterest:

I also decided to stain the sides of the drawers the same, because there was some weird speckling on the side of one drawer. This mostly masked it, without adding extra paint to the already-tight-fitting drawers.

Speaking of tight-fitting, the drawers weren’t sliding as smoothly as I would’ve liked, so I rubbed some paraffin wax on all the places where the drawers would rub, just so they would slide more smoothly, and it worked like a charm. I saw Meleah Kline from Mustard Tree Market do this, and I was like, “Hey, I have some of that from when I thought I was going to make candles!” 😂

I did the edges and flat spots, as well as the edges of the drawers and the side areas where the drawers slide

Now they slide like a dream!

I put one more coat of poly on to protect my wax (in retrospect, I should’ve let the wax dry a couple more days so it wouldn’t slide around quite as much—I only let it sit for about 2 days). And…


Here’s the finished product! I love how the brown wax really accentuated the blending! And check out the dimension on the bottom!

I also love that the top has almost a bit of a silvery cast to it.

My boy insisted I get one with him in it. 😊

It is for sale! $200 Email me at or contact me through social media if you’re interested!

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Sneak Peak!

Here’s a peak of the before of the headboard that I’m doing for my son’s new “big boy” bed! See the finished project here!

In classic Amber fashion, I forgot to take a “before” picture, so this is actually the back side, since I already started painting the front! 😂

Pretty in Pink


This little lady came to me from some neighbors who moved into a fully furnished house, but wanted to have their own furnishings. They were about to put it on the curb, but their daughter, who goes to church with me, remembered that I like to refinish furniture, so she messaged me to see if I’d want it. I had a pretty full garage at the time, but how could I pass up this free little cutie?!

I wasn’t quite sure what to do with her, and she needed a drawer glide fixed, so she went on the back burner for a while, which is to say, the back wall of the garage.

Then I finally decided I wanted to get her out of the garage and try out Dixie Belle’s Tea Rose, a cute, dusty pink.

I scuff-sanded it, and then decided to do the sides in fluff. At this point, I decided to make my life complicated–I mean, learn a new skill–blending.

I had seen a video about a week before about how to blend, and it looked doable, and the piece turned out so cute. So I tried it….


I came back and made it a little better later, but I still didn’t like the look.

It looked like I just slapped some white randomly in the middle of the drawers. Eww. So I decided to do some research. I looked up another blending video from one of my favorite furniture artists, Brandy Kollenborn from Brushed by Brandy. She is the blending queen! And she made it look sooo easy. Here’s a link to the video I used:

She’s amazing, right?

Here’s how it looked after I used her method:

So much better–more subtle, just a highlight in the middle of the drawer to add some depth.

I left the top the original wood color, initially, because I usually like the countryish look it adds to a piece, and I worry less about damage to the paint from things put on the top. However, once the paint was on the body, I hated the top.

I also added some disappearing stripes on the sides–another technique I learned from a fellow furniture artist from my favorite Dixie Belle Facebook group.

I used yellow 1 1/2 inch frog tape, spacing out the stripes evenly. I pretty much just eyeball the spacing so it looks right, but I do measure at the top and bottom with really long stripes like this, just to make sure they don’t end up diagonal. My mom introduced me to this Frog Tape, and it is a game-changer. It gave me great clean lines, and has ruined all other tape for me.

Once I had the lines taped on, I painted the Tea Rose on the middle of the stripes, and Fluff at the top and bottom, then blended them into each other, in a similar fashion as I did the drawers.

Then I applied this transfer from Redesign with Prima:

I love these Frenchy transfers, probably partially because I was a French nerd in school. The one above says, “A house is made of walls and beams, but a home is made with love and dreams.” Adorable, right? This one reminded me of another one I did this summer that was kind of my inspiration for this piece:

When I write the blog on this one, I’ll link to it!

I love these Prima transfers. They are such an easy way to take a blank slate and add some drama!

Finishing Touches:

I also decided that the top of the dresser was a bit plain, so I decided to bling it up a bit. I tried casting some moulds with resin for the first time! I accidentally screwed up and got the resin with the 24-48 hour dry time instead of the 10-minute dry time. Just a small difference. This is the one I should’ve gotten (and eventually did order):

Here’s the mould (Thorton’s Medallion):

I just used some Elmer’s wood glue to stick them on there, but you could also use E6000, or most other multi-surface adhesives.

After it dried, I painted it with a coat of Fluff, but I decided that the Fluff was too white, on the whole top. I kinda wished I had used Drop Cloth or Sawmill Gravy, which are both more off-white than Fluff. So I decided to try some brown wax to darken it up. I used Dixie Belle’s Best Dang Wax in brown, and applied it with an old natural-bristle brush, since I didn’t have any fancy wax brushes. It has pretty stiff bristles for getting down in the crevices. Before I applied it, I put on a coat of Varathane water-based polyurethane, so that I could wipe back the wax and have better control of how much was on there.

But When I added the wax, I found some places where the poly had dripped off the mould and dried. GRR.

So, I figured I’d have to sand off the bumps and do the whole process over again, but when I sanded back, I kept sanding the whole top, and it ended up leaving the wax only on the grain of the top, and it looked so cool! It was a happy little accident, as Bob Ross would say.


Here’s how it turned out! I added some new clear knobs that are a bit more feminine to match the new style.

Let me know what you think!

It is for sale! $200, and she’s yours!

If you like this, follow The Belle of the Brush here or on Instagram, Pinterest, or Facebook to see my next project!

Serpentine Dresser to Coffee Bar Makeover

I saw a picture of this serpentine dresser online, and I got so excited! I love cool old dressers, especially curvy ones. It was $40, which is a bit on the higher side for me for a small dresser, but I really liked it. It also said that it came with a vanity that she hadn’t gotten out of the storage unit yet, so I figured that would make it more like $20 for each piece. But then, I got there and saw these:

Yikes! I won’t even get into the vanity right now. It is still tucked away in my garage under a bunch of junk. I’m still not sure whether it’s destined for the burn pile. Probably not–I’m too stubborn for that.

The dresser was in slightly better shape, but the bottom of the bottom drawer was missing–well, not missing–you can see it laying on the top there. The bottom drawer would not come out at all. There were several red flags. I talked her down to $30. I probably shouldn’t have even offered that much, but I feel guilty offering less than 3/4 or 2/3 of someone’s asking price.

The dresser spent all summer upside down in my garage just waiting for me. I did get some entertainment from watching the spiders wrap up their snacks–that’s probably the Biology teacher nerd in me.

Finally, I saw a design transfer on a Facebook group that inspired me, and I knew just what to do with this dresser!

It is called “Fern Woods” by Redesign with Prima. I just love the botanical vibe it has!

I started to work on sanding the dresser and cleaning it. I was able to get all of the drawers out, but there was a lot more damage than I realized. One of the top drawers just needed a new bottom, because the layers of wood were warped and separating, so I cut one out of backer board (from Menards) with my jigsaw, using the original as a template.

When I went to look at the bottom drawers, I noticed that the reason they were hard to get out was that the bottom of the sides of the drawers were broken off. I knew they would never be able to slide right, and didn’t feel like it would be worth re-building the whole drawer to make it usable, so I decided to make shelves.

My husband had some leftover 1/4 in plywood from making his ice shanty (that he didn’t get to use this year because we only had about 2 weekends with thick enough ice), so I cut some to make my shelves, and attached them with some very tiny nails that I had left over from some sawtooth picture hangers.

I cleaned the whole thing, inside and out, spiders (either dead or maybe just hibernating) and webs, with TSP and rinsed it well.

Then I was ready to paint!

I started painting, and realized that the original paint that hadn’t come off while I was sanding was giving it a weird texture. Yay. So I went over it all with some wood putty and sanded it smooth when it dried.

THEN I could finally paint. I used Dixie Belle’s Drop Cloth. It is probably my favorite white of theirs, kind of an antique white, not too bright.

When it was dry, I added the transfer. It was just a couple inches too short and too narrow to fit in the inset area on the side, so I had to cut each leaf apart and place them individually.

And here’s the finished product!

I also added some wood-look drawer liners made by Duck Tape. This is my favorite way to line drawers.

I decided to paint the insides and outsides of the drawers as well. It just looks a bit nicer and more professional.

I painted the insides with a sample of a green Behr paint I had left over from when my mother-in-law was trying to decide what to paint her living room.

For the knobs, I used the originals, but I sanded most of the rust off, then added a bit of “Vintage Gold” gilding wax from Prima for a little bit of shine.

For sale!

This one is still for sale at $115. Message me on social media @thebelleofthebrush or email me at

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