DIY Ideas for Redoing Dressers

By Elizabeth Smith

When you have an old dresser that is showing its age, a facelift can give it new life. Taking a dresser to a professional can be expensive; for a more budget-friendly project, refinish the dresser on your own. A rotary tool equipped with an applicable sized engraving cutter will allow you to make patterns and designs into the drawers or the top of the dresser. These can then be painted or stained a different color to highlight the design. Even with no skills, you can create a custom dresser that will fit perfectly into the decor of your home.

Stenciled Dresser

For a fun, bold dresser design, use stencils and paint. Use spray paint to cover the dresser in a single paint color; use a spray primer to give the paint something to stick to. When the base paint is dry, remove the fronts of the dresser drawers. Cut out custom stencils from adhesive-backed paper and smooth them onto the front of the dresser drawers. Then, spray the drawer fronts with a contrasting color; the bigger the contrast, the bolder the dresser will be. Peel the stencils off and replace the drawers to complete the dresser.


Add color and print to your dresser using decoupage. Choose craft paper, a poster, wallpaper or even a large map. Cut out pieces of the paper to fit the drawers, the top and the sides of the dresser. Spread a thin layer of decoupage glue onto each of the surfaces and spread the paper out so it sticks smoothly to the dresser. Cover the surfaces with several layers of decoupage glue, allowing each layer to dry before adding the next one. Finish the dresser by spraying it with a few layers of spray varnish.


Give your dresser a touch of sparkle by covering it in small beads. Cover the surface of the drawers in a layer of heavy-duty craft glue and allow it to dry slightly so it is less fluid. Pour on a thick layer of beads so they adhere to the glue, making sure that every bit of the glue is covered. Allow the glue to dry and shake them so any excess beads roll off. Spray on a layer of varnish to set the drawer.


Add starbursts to a dresser. Paint the dresser in a solid color so the surface is uniform. Use skewers with pointed ends to create starburst shapes on the sides of the dresser; cut the ends to form radiating lines of different lengths from a center point. Continue the theme by making miniature starburst designs on the corners of several drawers.

© Demand Media 2011