10 September 2012

Going Green – Campaign Dresser Makeover! (Plus a Review of Benjamin Moore's Advance Paint)

As much as I love classic blacks and clean whites, my last few makeovers left me seriously craving some colour. So I finally took the plunge with this fabulous little campaign chest – the perfect candidate for a bright & bold transformation! 


I’ve been crushing on campaign furniture for awhile now, what with all the gorgeous makeovers online. So when I found this piece at GW a few months ago, I may have jumped for joy. Just a little bit :) And at $17, it wasn't a bad deal for design inspiration come true.


The finish looks way better here than it was - really drab and dizzingly grainy. I knew I wanted to go bright - how great would this look in a deep red or indigo blue? Not to mention pink, if you’re not married to my husband :) But we both liked the idea of a fun bold green, so I went with it.

For starters we removed the hutch ('we' meaning my sweet husband, with the help of my parents’ awesome handyman friend Hai - I pretended to supervise). This was harder than expected because the screw heads were embedded, so it had to be pried + sawed off, after which we had to deal with the screws sticking out.  There must be a smarter way to do this, but all we could think of was to saw them off.

Since the dresser was in relatively good shape, the rest of the makeover was fairly straightforward.   


1. patched the screw holes with wood filler, plus all the major dings and scratches and one pretty beat up corner
2. primed with Zinsser Cover stain, a stinky but otherwise great sanding-free primer for laminate/glossy surfaces
3. applied 2 coats of semi-gloss paint, sanding lightly between coats

I decided to try out Benjamin Moore’s Advance paint, mixed in a custom colour. Can we just take a minute to talk about this paint?! It is aMAZING – I’d read good reviews, but nothing prepared me for the awesomeness that is this paint. Seriously! It rolls on as smooth as butter, and it has an extended drying time as well as being self-leveling, which meant the finish came out PERFECTLY. No matter what I did, by the time it dried it always leveled out to a super smooth even coat, not a hint of patchiness, let alone a single brush or roller mark. No need for paint conditioner! Plus I hardly used any of it (this dresser used less than ¼ of a quart), and despite the deep colour without a tinted primer, I was good in 2 coats. It's a bit pricier (here in TO, it cost me about $5-10 more than a regular good quality brand from a big box store) but it definitely goes a long way. And for an amateur painter like me it’s worth it for a guaranteed professional finish. Here's a close-up:


On the downside, the extended dry time does mean a much longer cure time between coats, but it was a reasonable trade-off.

As for a sealer, the paint guy claimed it wasn’t needed because this paint dries to a hard and durable finish over time. Not sure about this yet – it has got a few  tiny marks on the top already, but the sealer I tested dulled the finish so I skipped it anyway. Anyone with any tips please let me know :)

I’m really happy with the final results. So much so that I won’t be selling this one – it's the perfect statement piece for our living space.


The colour reads more turquoise on screen than it is in person, but picture a really bright deep green. I still felt a bit hesitant about it at first but now I totally love it -  it's so fun and vibrant and I just love how it makes the hardware pop.


I'm crazy about this Chinese porcelain lamp - it was an amazing Goodwill find for 10 bucks (right?!). I paired it with a simple shade from Homesense.


The lovely orchid was from my Mom :) and the mirror was another Homesense find. Picked up some of the other accessories on a visit to the US awhile back (at Homegoods - any guesses what my fave store is?)


Here's another before and after



I'm sad to say it got a little damaged in the move, but it's still the perfect pop of colour in our new home!

31 comments:

  1. that color is AMAZEBALLS!!! i love it- it's so perfect for that piece!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Great find and great job!! I don't know if you ever saw the green campaign dresser I did. Come take a look if you get a chance (go to gallery and scroll down till you find it. I actually did two. one in green and one in blue.) Your vignette is gorgeous with this piece! Seriously wonderful job. And I agree with the BM paint! Just let it cure. Takes about 10 days for latex. You won't need a top coat.

    ReplyDelete
  3. That is stunning! I've been looking for a similar piece. I love this one. Megan

    ReplyDelete
  4. Love love the color! Especially love the decorative styling!

    ReplyDelete
  5. OMG! This is so gorgeous!!! What a find and what an eye for great color and design!!!!! Great job Samaa!

    ReplyDelete
  6. Amazing find and super awesome re-do. I love the color. It really seems to brighten up the room :) You have such a good eye for these things!! Mashallah!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. JazakiAllah kheir Dehdee! I'm flattered :) and so glad you liked it!

      Delete
  7. Oh my gosh what an amazing transformation! I love the color and how you acessorized the piece!

    ReplyDelete
  8. Absolutely stunning. Such a great color. I love, love, love it.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Replies
    1. So glad you do - thank you so soo much!

      Delete
  10. Wow! I gotta find and do something similar! I've been admiring both the style and color for a while now. I love the brass accents. Good for you for taking off the top even though it was a headache.

    Looks great!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much! Hope you find something you love! I'm still hoping to find another :)

      Delete
  11. Um, I'd love to leave you a gushing comment about your $17 score and amazing transformation, but I just died of jealousy. (So so good!)

    ReplyDelete
  12. i love campaign furniture and i love your redo, i would love to feature it if that would be ok please let me know,
    lauren

    ReplyDelete
  13. Samaa!! This is gorgeous! I adore the color and well...I'm just speechless.

    SO glad Cassie featured you on her blog I would have missed it. Your feed isn't updating in my reader :(

    ReplyDelete
  14. Samaa, I love this! That color is gorgeous and it pops. Also your staging and photos are amazing. Ever consider doing a post on how you edit your photos? They look professional!!

    ReplyDelete
  15. I love that shade of green. I saw a dresser today at Good Will that would look amazing in this colour...must go back to buy it.

    ReplyDelete
  16. when I went back to Goodwill for the dresser it was gone:(

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. oh no! that's happened to me so many times before, that's really too bad :( Hopefully you'll find another one you love real soon!

      Delete
  17. Sallam.
    i accidentally come across to your blog.you are very creative dear...
    Best wishes...

    ReplyDelete
  18. I'm obsessed with that color! It is perfect! I've been dying to do a similar makeover with a white dresser that I have, but have been searching for the perfect color. I know you said this one is custom, but did they give you a color code when they were finished mixing? Any help would be greatly appreciated :-)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Meg! If you were in the Toronto area I'd have been more than happy to give you the paint - I have so much leftover and doubt I'll use it again soon! Although I took a quick peek at your blog and don't think you are local...So the paint colour I was trying to match was called 'Racing Green', but I can't remember which brand it was. Unfortunately when BM matched the paint it was totally off - my first coat was really light and very aqua/turquoise. I actually ended up taking the paint back to be re-tinted and darkened twice! So the colour code I have isn't actually correct. I'll type out what's written on the can anyway:

      30GG18/450 "Racing Green"
      K793-3x
      W1 0X 1.6250
      Y2 0X 9.1875
      B1 0X 16.4375
      G1 0X 23.6875

      I took this paint back twice and asked for it to be made darker and "more green, less turquoise". I'm sorry I couldn't be more specific, hope this still helps somewhat!

      Delete
  19. love love your piece. I love the color and I am so glad you took out the top
    sumayya

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. thank you SO much Sumayya! You're so sweet, I really appreciate it!

      Delete
  20. I've been researching how to professionally paint campaign furniture as I have a large desk I need to start working on. I have a little side biz and need to make sure the paint job comes out perfect. I was wondering how this piece has fared over time without a finish/sealer?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hey there! Well it's been over a year since I painted this and I'd say 90% of the paint job looks as good as new. The truth is this piece has been through 2 moves with us in the past year (and it's so heavy it was literally dropped on the stairs during one of them!), so it did chip a little along the corners. Also along the top edges of one of the drawers that gets rubbed a lot as its opened and closed, there is a teeny tiny bit of wear, although it's barely noticeable. So it hasn't been totally resistant to wear, but I feel like it's held up pretty well for a painted piece. Unfortunately I haven't kept any of my other projects that I used a sealer on so I can't say if it would have been in better or worse shape with a protective coat. Another point to consider is that this dresser doesn't get as much daily use as a desk top would. That said I still love this BM paint as much as I did back then and I'd use it again in a heartbeat - other paints can also come out really smooth if you have good technique, but this is a great paint that makes it much easier to get a flawless paint job.
      Hope that helps somewhat - I'd love to see what you're working on!

      Delete
  21. Hi Samaa, how are you? I hope you're doing well.

    The campaign dresser looks so pretty. Nice job!

    I really like the color and would possibly like to use it. What is the name of the color?

    Blessings,
    Ashley

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Ashley! Thanks so much for your sweet comment, I really appreciate it :) I'm pretty good (although feeling as huge as ever at 8 months preggo :), hope you're doing well too!
      I mention the colour in a previous comment as well, I was trying to have BM match a colour called "Racing Green", although when they matched it it was totally off and I ended up taking it back to be re-tinted twice, so unfortunately it's a custom colour. This is the original formula they used:
      30GG18/450 "Racing Green"
      K793-3x
      W1 0X 1.6250
      Y2 0X 9.1875
      B1 0X 16.4375
      G1 0X 23.6875
      but as I said I had it re-tinted twice, I asked for it to be made darker and more green (it was originally a really bright aqua - also nice, but not what I was going for). Sorry I couldn't be more help!

      Delete
  22. This is so beautiful. I love that colour - my bridesmaids wore it last year and it was amazing. Everything you touch is so gorgeously transformed. I wish you could decorate my space.

    ReplyDelete