Teal Chalk Painted Dresser Makeover

This antique thrift store dresser was refinished in stunning teal blue distressed paint and dark wood stained legs. This pop of color is so much fun for any room in your home, and is so much fun on a dresser! Here’s the teal chalk painted dresser makeover.

Get more DIY dresser makeovers here!

Antique Highboy Dresser before makeover

Every time I look at this dresser, I can’t help but smile! And I hope you feel the same way!

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This one was a custom order for a client who knew exactly what she wanted, and we were over the moon happy to make her imagination a reality.

After she contacted us, we were so lucky to find this beautiful antique dresser listed on craigslist over at a local thrift store! What do you think?

Our client picked this amazing shade of teal and asked for the legs to be stained. I’ve said it before, and I will continue to say it! Clients always pick the best colors!

This one is called Summer Dragonfly by Behr. It’s a beautiful and fun shade of teal. In some light it shows more green and in others it shows more blue. I love that about it!

scroll down to see the after photos

Supplies Used for Teal Chalk Painted Dresser Makeover

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Prepping A Dresser for Paint

Repairs and prep work are the least fun part of any painted dresser makeover, but it’s also the most important.

If repairs aren’t made before paint, you risk ruining the new paint job. And if the surface isn’t prepped to take paint, you can end up with paint that easily scratches or peels off. Nooooooo!

Read more about how to prepare furniture for painting here.

Get the Secrets!

Grab this super convenient How to Repair Furniture Ebook with all of our secrets on how to repair furniture for only $14.

You can print it out and have instant access whenever you come across damaged furniture, and know exactly how to fix it!

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ebook on how to repair furniture

So, once all of the repairs were made, I wiped down the dresser with Krud Kutter to get rid of any dirt, grease, or grime that was on the surface.

Read more about how to clean furniture before painting here!

Then I lightly sanded the whole dresser with 220 grit sandpaper. Learn more about sandpaper for furniture painting here.

Lightly sanding (no need to sand off the old finish. Just rub the sandpaper over everything just a couple of times) really really helps the paint adhere to the old stained wood finish.

Yes, chalk paint is made to stick to “any” surface, but I don’t like to leave that to chance. (It takes a lot longer to remove a crappy paint job than it does to prep correctly the first time. 😉 )

Learn more about the importance of sanding before painting furniture here!

If the surface is too shiny or slick it can easily peel or flake off still. If a piece is really shiny and slick then I make sure to prime it first as well. You want the finish to last years and years.

Learn all about the best primers for painting furniture (and how to choose the right one) here!

We also taped off the front legs with painter’s tape and brown paper to protect them from any paint. Learn how to prevent overspray when painting furniture in this post.

dresser outside ready for paint

How to Make Latex Paint into Chalk Paint

I love how chalk paint distresses, it has better adhesion, and I love the finish it creates. Plus I’m just more comfortable with chalk paints, and you don’t HAVE to prime, unlike latex paint. 

Since Behr doesn’t color-match chalk paint, we made the Behr latex paint into our own homemade chalk paint. Get the easy homemade chalk paint recipe here.

*UPDATE: Behr now has a chalk paint line, called Behr Chalk Paint and you can ask them to tint it any color!!

Painting A Dresser with Chalk Paint

This method of painting furniture is totally optional! But if you’re looking for a brush-free finish on your furniture, you’ve got to spray the paint on instead of brushing it.

Here’s more about how to paint furniture without brush marks. And learn the tips and tricks of painting furniture with a sprayer here.

There are so many tips and tricks on how to get a brush-free finish with a brush… but let’s be honest. You’re still going to see brush marks if you use a brush. So don’t even get into the headache.

I bought this paint sprayer when we moved out of our apartment and into a home because I finally had a place where I could use it – in our backyard.

The sprayer itself was cheaper than I imagined it would be, and it was sooooooo stinking fast compared to brushing! I absolutely love this paint sprayer for painting furniture.

*Update: I have since tried several other paint sprayers and I have a new favorite! Find out which paint sprayers I think are the best in this post about HVLP paint sprayers for furniture!

Simply thin out the paint using the little funnel tool provided with the paint sprayer, plug it in, and get to painting. Check out this tutorial about how to use a Wagner Double Duty paint sprayer.

To paint this dresser, we put it outside on a dollar store plastic shower curtain and some wood blocks.  

dresser outside and painted blue

If you’re not ready for a paint sprayer, I really recommend getting a nice paint brush that won’t break the bank. Learn more about the best paint brushes for painting furniture here.

When all the paint was dry I removed the tape and paper around the legs.

Distressing The Chalk Paint

Then I lightly sanded everything down with 220 grit sandpaper just to lightly distress the edges. This is totally optional as well, but I think that distressing painted furniture brings out the details that you might otherwise miss. Here are the 6 best techniques for distressing furniture.

teal painted dresser distressed and sealed

Plus, we know our kids are going to ding it up anyway. Why not make it intentional?

A quick clean with a vacuum with a hose attachment and a damp rag cleaned the dust right up. 

Refinishing the Wood Legs

Instead of stripping or sanding the legs down to raw wood, and then staining the legs again, I used gel stain to freshen them up. The legs were in good condition and just needed a quick little refresh to bring them back to life.

Gel stain is different than the regular wood stain. Gel stain sits on top of the existing finish instead of penetrating into the wood.

You don’t need to wipe gel stain back off. Just wipe or brush it on, and then let it dry. I just brushed the gel stain on with a cheap foam brush.

A really light even coat is the best way to apply gel stain. If you want it darker you can apply more coats of gel stain.

But the streaks of a thick uneven finish make it hard to look like a real stained finish. See gel stain in action with this tutorial on how to stain wood darker

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Sealing Chalk Paint and Gel Stain

After the gel stain was completely dry, we sealed the paint and the stain with our favorite polyurethane.

I waited 48 hours to seal the stain since the gel stain is oil-based and the polyurethane is water-based. Learn ALL of my tips and tricks on how to spray polyurethane here!

Chalk paint really needs to be sealed with either a wax or poly if it’s going to have any traffic on it. Water-based polyurethane makes the paint extra durable, makes it easier to wipe things off of the paint and doesn’t make the paint turn yellow like oil-based poly does.

Read through this post to learn more about the best topcoats for painting furniture.

Attaching Hardware to Teal Painted Dresser

The original hardware was lightly cleaned, leaving the dark antique finish that only years of sitting around can achieve.

closeup of Teal Blue Painted Dresser with hardware
Full View of Teal Dresser after makeover

More Before And After Makeovers

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

Side view of Teal Dresser

Isn’t it a stunner?? It couldn’t have turned out any better! Especially when our client came to pick it up and absolutely loved it! Want to know how to price flipped furniture? Check out my post to learn more.

This dresser will be a statement piece that will last years to come. See more teal painted furniture and turquoise painted furniture ideas here. For more tall dresser makeovers, here’s our list of tall dresser ideas!

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Teal Chalk Painted Dresser Makeover

Teal Chalk Painted Dresser Makeover

Make any antique thrift store furniture pop with this stunning teal blue color. Here are the steps for this teal chalk painted dresser makeover.



  1. Remove hardware from the dresser. Prep the paint by fixing any damages then clean the dresser with Krud Kutter. Lightly sand the whole dresser after.
  2. If the surface is too shiny or slick, it's best to apply primer. Then tape off the front legs of the dresser with painter’s tape and brown paper to protect them from any paint.
  3. To make chalk paint from latex paint, mix Calcium Carbonate Powder with water then add in your latex paint. Then apply the teal chalk paint onto your dresser. When all the paint dries, remove the tape and paper around the legs.
  4. You can distress the edges of the dresser by lightly sanding everything down with 220 grit sandpaper. Clean all the dust with vacuum and damp rag.
  5. Refinish the wood legs by brushing gel stain on them then let them dry.
  6. After the gel stain dries completely, seal the teal paint and stain with polyurethane. Wait around 48 hours to seal the stain since the gel stain is oil-based and the polyurethane is water-based.
  7. Attach your clean hardware back to the dresser.

Recommended Products

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before and after photos of tall teal painted dresser
Closeup of the Dresser Before Paint
Antique Highboy Dresser before makeover


  1. Linda Spike says:

    Thank you! Very beautiful piece!

  2. Cindy Stavrum says:

    Behr DOES actually color match their chalk paint – at least they do at my Home Depot.

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