With a whirl wind of a summer, and a busy fall, it often feels like there are not enough hours in the day.  It is hard to believe we are now in October....where did the summer go?
Although I must say September was a most beautiful month.  Cool mornings and evenings, then hot afternoons.  Perfect September weather.
Somewhere amidst these past few busy months, I was able to restore an old dresser - not sure how I pulled that off, I am still trying to figure that one out!
We purchased this vintage tall boy dresser for $15.00 - it needed work...a lot of work.  The drawers are tongue and groove and overall the dresser is very solid.
This is not the greatest picture, but check out this nasty, ugly stain on this old dresser:
Here is the side view:
Technically I should have used a stain "stripper".  But the thought of those harsh chemicals was too much to think about, so lots of muscle power and an electric sander was the way I went.  The drawers were somewhat banged up too.  It took about 6 hours over 2 days to get all of the old stain off - not bad considering how thick the stain was.
Here is the top of the dresser already sanded: See how there is still color in the wood?  It will mean whatever stain color we use will go darker as a result - but better that than nasty chemicals.
Mr. Tucker decided to keep me company, until I turned on the sander - then he was out of there like a shot!
By the second day of sanding, my hands were going numb from the vibration of the sander - Mercy!
Here is the dresser fully sanded:
In the end it will be worth it...DH is not convinced...he is most decidedly dubious, but I said "Just you wait and see - it will look great".  (hopefully, we will get better pictures)  Next up:  The Stain - which is low VOC (volatile organic compounds /ordorless) and a new look.......

Ina Gawne
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  1. I have a piece of furnitute that looks a lot like that, Ina. It has the curved top. It belonged to my grandmother. I refinished it years ago for son's room and still love it. I actually call it a chest of drawers. I have another piece of furniture that's lower in height and has drawers on either side that I call a dresser. It has a mirror that goes with it. It's not from the same set and it does have a stain on top. Will have to remember your tips when I get to removing that. I stripped the chest of drawers that goes with it years ago, but have never finished them. (I did strip and finish the bed that was parts of the set.) I have actually thought of painting them both as we have so much wood in our house and some color might be fun, but it seems sort of sacrilege to do that to nice wooden furniture. Anyway, bravo, and I can't wait to see the final product! Refinishing furniture can be a great stress reducer and one always feels great pride when seeing pieces, even many years later. 🙂

    1. Shirley - your pieces of furniture sound lovely. I know what you mean about paint. Refinishing furniture does take some muscle power and work,
      but it sure is nice to see the end result, and as you say, even many years later. This project was actually a lot of fun. And the low VOC stains
      are so much nicer to work with than the old stains of yesteryear. I have found with these "gel" stains, they are much easier to apply as well. If you
      do refinish your pieces - I would love to see the pictures - please share! 🙂

  2. You and your bargains! 🙂
    Isn't it satisfying - turning something... raggedy... into something beautiful and useful?
    I love these posts about your life - they don't make me as hungry as your posts about food lol! XO

    1. Sophie - thanks again my kind friend! Life has been so busy with my new business, but your thoughtfulness touches my heart! 🙂

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October 1, 2012