Painting Furniture with Lilly Moon Paint

There’s something about thrifted furniture that just makes it so much more special. Maybe it’s the history behind each piece, or the unique imperfections that make it one-of-a-kind. This week we tried painting furniture with Lilly Moon Paint for the first time, and here’s how it turned out.

Learn more about the different types of paint for furniture here.

photo of antique dresser before painting

We found this antique dresser on Facebook marketplace. It didn’t come with the top 2 drawers… and I’ve debated about what to do with it for about a year… until just recently.

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If I removed the top 2 drawers, you would see that the top wasn’t 1 solid piece. If I kept the drawer cubbies, I would have to do something with them… but what?

Well… check out what I ended up doing.

Supplies Used For painting with lilly moon paint (opulent)

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Remove Dresser Hardware

Just like with every furniture makeover, I got started by removing the hardware. Look at the gunk behind these things!!

Removing hardware on dresser drawers

I personally don’t like the pulls…. So they aren’t going back on.

Get a detailed tutorial on how to prepare furniture for paint here.

Remove Top Drawer Boxes and Top Itself

Then I removed the drawer boxes on the top. They were attached with a couple of screws in the front and in the back.

But then that left us with a top that had 2 large holes in it. So we pried that off.

prying off the top of a dresser

And it didn’t want to come off… at first. Haha, we eventually got it off though, and it was just held on with some old glue and nails.

Clean and Sand Dresser Before Painting

Then we sprayed everything with my favorite furniture cleaner, Krud Kutter, and wiped it all down to remove any dirt, grease, or grime.

All of that gunk from behind the hardware didn’t budge at all though. Learn more on how to clean furniture before painting here.

So when the Krud Kutter was dry, we used 100 grit sandpaper to sand it off. I went through so many sheets of sandpaper on these. I have no idea what it was, but man it didn’t want to come off.

Eventually, it all came off, and then I sanded it all with 150 grit and then 220 grit sandpaper to smooth it out. Learn more about sandpaper for furniture painting here.

Fix Dresser Damage

My husband took over for a bit to scuff sand the dresser for me and then filled in the scratches and dings with wood filler.

Check out this post to learn more about the best wood fillers for furniture.

We let the wood filler dry overnight, and then he sanded the wood filler down and finished scuff sanding everything the next morning.

Learn the importance of sanding before painting furniture here.

And then he cleaned up all of the dust with the vacuum. At this point, I realized that the keyhole on one drawer was damaged, so I fixed that with some KwikWood.

fixing damaged keyhole with Kwikwood

Check out this post to learn more about repairing old furniture.

And then I realized that we needed to fill in the hardware holes because I wasn’t putting the old hardware back on… and the old holes weren’t evenly spaced either. Haha

So Taylor filled those hardware holes in with more KwikWood.

Read this post to learn how to use KwikWood! Or check out this comparison post on the best ways to fill holes when replacing furniture hardware.

Cut New Dresser Top

While the KwikWood dried, we cut a new top for the dresser.

cutting wood on a table saw

We measured twice and used the table saw to cut it to the right size… But when we put it on the dresser, it was an inch too big.

So we cut it again! Thank goodness we cut it too big and not too small! Then we taped the edges so we could router the edges and get a clean cut…

And tested out some different router bits. Good thing we tested them because we didn’t go with the first option! Then Taylor routered the edge of the new top and I did the most important job… removing the tape. Haha

We attached the new top to the dresser with some glue and brad nails with our nail gun. Nothing too complicated here!

Here’s another great post about replacing a dresser top on this black vintage farmhouse dresser.

If you like a weathered wood top look, check out how to make a plank top dresser here.

And then, I filled the nail holes and knots with some plastic wood filler.

After the wood filler and KwikWood were dry, we sanded them down smooth and cleaned up all of the dust. Learn about the best sanders for furniture in this post!

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Prime Dresser with Aqua Lock Primer

We lined our paint tray with some tin foil. And filled it up with some Aqua Lock Primer in black. The more I use this stuff, the more I love it!

Learn more about the best primers for painting furniture here.

I brushed and rolled it onto the dresser, hoping to fill in the open wood grain that I created by sanding the drawers down to raw wood in some spots… And to fill in any open wood grain texture on the top.

If I would have sprayed it on, it wouldn’t have filled in any wood grain. So even though I don’t care for rolling paint on, this was an exception to my rule. Haha

painting dresser top with a paint roller

Read more about the best paint brushes for painting furniture here and the best rollers for painting furniture here.

It went on really well with the roller though! I love that it’s black, it’s water-based, and it has excellent adhesion properties.

Hide Wood Grain When Painting

When the primer was dry, I could still see some wood grain texture on the drawers where I had sanded to bare wood. So I filled those spots in with some wood filler and let it dry overnight.

applying plastic wood filler to hide wood grain

Check out this post to learn how to hide wood grain when painting.

The next day I sanded everything down smooth with 220 grit sandpaper… though I probably didn’t need to sand everything.

The primer went on really smooth, but since I was already sanding, I just hit all of it. Then I primed the drawers and the top of the dresser again for good measure.

And when the primer was dry an hour later, I sanded it down smooth again and cleaned up the dust.

Spray Painting Furniture with Lilly Moon Paint

Since I wanted to spray paint onto the dresser, I taped off the drawers with painter’s tape and plastic so the paint wouldn’t get inside the drawers.

We also laid down plastic on the walls and floor. Learn more about how to prevent overspray when painting furniture here.

And then I mixed the paint into the sprayer. I used Lilly Moon Paint’s new all-in-one paint called Opulent in the color Wilderness.

They were a sponsor at a conference I went to, so I got it for free to try out. And this color is gorgeous!

Mixing Lilly Moon Opulent paint

I added about 15% water to the paint because you know me… I don’t like spraying paint without thinning it out. Read this post to learn more about How to thin paint for Wagner FLEXiO Sprayer.

I tested the spray out on a cardboard box and then sprayed it onto the dresser. It felt thicker than I like… It sprayed slower and I was worried that there was going to be a lot of texture still.

spray painting furniture with 1st coat of lilly moon paint

But an hour later I checked out it, and it looked so good! No texture left behind! And the paint had really good coverage too!

It did feel slightly rough to the touch, which happens to me with my favorite topcoat a lot too when it dries too fast or overspray gets on it.

Not shown here, I did add a splash more water to thin it out just a little more… And then I sprayed a second coat of paint. I liked how it sprayed on better this time.

Updating Dresser Hardware

I let it dry for 4 hours, and then I drilled new holes into the drawers with my KREG hardware jig. And I put new brass knobs on.

Check out this complete guide for finishing touches of painting furniture to learn more.

First, I absolutely LOVE this color! Isn’t it such a good shade of green??

close up on dresser details with green paint and gold knobs
full view of green painted dresser with gold knobs

More Before And After Makeovers

Click any of these “before” photos below to view the “after” of that makeover.

side angle of green painted dresser

I love the new look overall. The details on the side of the dresser stand out more now, and I think it looks so much better without the drawers on the top.

Lilly Moon Paint Review

As far as the Lilly Moon Opulent paint… overall I think it’s a great paint. But I wouldn’t say that it’s my favorite ever.

It’s very durable! I brushed some on a scrap board, with and without sanding beforehand, and no priming. Only a few days later it’s not budging when I scratch at it.

scratching dried paint on a sample board

I didn’t get any bleed-through stains at all, which I thought I might get some bleeding… but there’s absolutely none.

Read more about bleedthrough and how to stop stains from coming through paint here! And check out the best primers to stop tannin bleed here.

The selection of colors is fabulous, and the coverage was great!

Since it’s an all-in-one paint, I didn’t think it would be matte, where it scratches, scuffs, and gets dirty really easily… but it is definitely matte.

That’s the biggest bummer about this paint for me…So if you love a matte paint finish though, this paint is excellent!

Here’s my full Lilly Moon Paint review to learn more. Check out this Hexagon End Table Makeover using Lilly Moon Paint for more inspiration.

Seal Dresser with Furniture Salve

I ended up putting some Wise Owl furniture salve all over the dresser to help reduce how easy it is to scuff and get dirty.

wise owl furniture salve with lid off

And then I also added some salve inside the drawers to freshen up the wood, and on the wood drawer tracks to help the drawers go in and out easier. If you’re have any issues with the track system, here are ways how to fix broken dresser drawer tracks.

Learn more about how to fix old dresser drawers that stick in this post if your old dresser drawers are hard to open!

And… now I’m thinking I might just keep this dresser instead of selling it. We’ll see!

Your might have the question “Is selling furniture profitable?“, check out this inspirational story to get your answer!

If you want to know how to make money painting furniture, check out this post to find out.

Painting Furniture with Lilly Moon Paint

green thrifted dresser after the makeover

Transform any thrifted furniture with an all-in-one paint. Here are the steps for painting furniture with Lilly Moon Paint.


  1. Remove the old hardware, top drawer boxes, and the top of the dresser.
  2. Clean the dresser, scuff sand, and fill in any damage with wood filler. Let the wood filler dry overnight, and then sand it down and scuff sand everything the next morning. Clean up all the dust with the vacuum.
  3. Cut a new top for the dresser, router the edges for some nice details then attach the new top to the dresser with some wood glue and brad nails.
  4. Prime the dresser and when it dries and you see some wood grain texture,  fill in those spots with wood filler and let it dry overnight. Sand everything down smooth then prime again for good measure. Sand again after the primer dries.
  5. Tape off the dresser drawers with painter’s tape and plastic so the paint wouldn’t get inside. Mix the Lilly Moon paint into the sprayer and add about 15% water to thin it out. Spray 2 coats onto the dresser.
  6. Let the paint dry for 4 hours, then drill new hardware holes with the KREG hardware jig. Attach new hardware.
  7. Apply Wise Owl furniture salve all over the dresser to help reduce how easy it is to scuff and get dirty.

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before photo of dresser


  1. Ya know that was an Eastlake Dresser. Those were made between 1870-1890. More valuable unpainted. But yours did turn out beautiful!! I am painting an Eastlake right now.

  2. I just bought similar dresser at an Estate Sale…mine is 3 drawers. I will not be painting mine. I fell in love with the knobs. My dresser and a nightstand cost me a total of $27. Saw a nightstand at an antique store today for $325….the dresser was $950. I have some truly ugly and cheap estate sale furniture that I will be painting this color because it is absolutely beautiful.c

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