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Free Ultimate Furniture Painting Guide

Love You Bunches: Playful Whimsical Dresser Makeover Revealed!

Woah! You may need to pull out your sunglasses for this playful whimsical dresser makeover!

It's been awhile since I went this wild on a furniture piece.....and it felt so good!

Love You Bunches: Playful Whimsical Dresser Makeover | Traceys Fancy

If you are a new reader, hello and welcome to the Fancy Fam! With over a decade of furniture painting experience, I can honestly say that sharing my projects through this blog is still my favorite way to inspire! I've got years worth of fun and creative ways to update your home decor and furniture through paint! If this sounds like something you'd like to have delivered to you every Sunday be sure to sign up for my weekly newsletter here!


The Design Plan: Playful Whimsical Dresser

This is a custom piece for my daughter-in-law's mother, Kathy, and it originally belonged to the grandmother, Meme. 

Kathy is a force!  She has a huge personality and is known for her wild ways and love of all things colorful!

She gave me complete freedom on this piece...only mentioning her love of leopard and black and white checks! we go!

Love You Bunches: Playful Whimsical Dresser Makeover Design Plan | Traceys Fancy

I spent some time drawing out my design ideas...which I really don't do very often. 

This piece was going to be busy and I needed it to make sense in my brain before I got started.


To be honest, I stayed pretty close to my original plan which is quite surprising!

Before: Playful Whimsical Dresser Makeover

The piece came to me already painted turquoise.  It was a latex paint with a high shine.... that was put on thick with lots of visible brushstrokes.  

Turquoise Dresser before whimsical playful dresser makeover

I chose not to sand it down or strip it as the piece is very primitive with lots of cracks and warped boards. 

Turquoise Dresser before whimsical playful dresser makeover

We are embracing its many imperfections and going to make them not the least bit noticeable when all is said and done!

It's quality, high functioning days are behind it.....and it will now be used as a eye candy feature piece with fond memories of belonging to Meme.  

Supplies Used

Top Coat Satin (to apply decoupage paper)

Stick with Me Adhesive (for gold leaf)

Posh Pigments Gold (for legs and trim around two top surfaces)

Easy Peasy Spray Wax (to seal the entire piece)

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How to Create a Playful Whimsical Dresser

After a good wash with White Lightning, I primed areas that I knew would be painted in checks and stripes with Bonding Boss in gray just because I wanted to be sure there was no bleed through in my white painted areas. 

Turquoise Dresser before whimsical playful dresser makeover

I covered the rest completely....with the chalk mineral paint The Gulf.  

Painted turquoise and white dresser

There is so much to cover in the making of this piece...I think I'd lose you if I described step-by-step. 


So I am going to cover sections of the piece, products used...and some of my favorite processes.

Playful Whimsical Dresser Drawers

The very first thing I did was to paint the drawers in four patterns.  

I originally painted them in four patterns with all black and white using Drop Cloth and Caviar.

Peak of black and white whimsical dresser drawers

I ended up changing this to include pink/gold animal prints...but kept the black and white stripes and harlequin. 

I chose a small leopard print for one with gold leaf and black spots over a bold pink.

And then check out that gold leafed zebra pattern!!!

They both shimmer and shine so beautifully!!!

playful whimsical dresser drawer makeover by Traceys Fancy

Swirling Blending Cloud Scene

My favorite process of this entire piece is the large door.

I spent two long sessions swirling and blending a cloud scene.....and I LOVE it!  

The bottom appears dark, moody.....and maybe even a little peaceful....and the top opens up to sunshine, light and hope!

hand painted clouds on dresser drawer | Traceys Fancy

Playful Whimsical Celestial Dream Design Transfer

Ok...this next part was fun!!

I chose Lani's Celestial Dreams transfer and applied it OVER my clouds.

This transfer looks beige in the package but goes onto your furniture piece as white.

I loved it like this...but eventually I decided to bring in color by painting over the sun and moon with bold color to make it less dreamy and more punchy! 

I also added a silver leafed lightning bold to the center of the sort of match the powerful personality of Kathy!

silver leaf on dresser makeover | Traceys Fancy

An online viewer/friend of mine suggested outlining the transfer pieces in black paint to make them more "tattoo like"....and it was THE best suggestion ever!!!

Love You Bunches: Playful Whimsical Dresser Makeover | Traceys Fancy

Tattoo Decoupage on Playful Whimsical Dresser

Speaking of Tattoo.....I chose the Tattoo decoupage paper for the two right side panels...upper and lower!

tattoo decoupage paper on playful whimsical dresser makeover | Traceys Fancy

This is one of my favorite decoupage paper that Dixie Belle carries! And while we are talking about design transfers...check out NINE other favorite design transfers HERE. 

tattoo decoupage paper by Dixie Belle

After securing it in place with Top Coat in Satin.....

I used Caviar black to shade in around the perimeter of each panel to give it a shadowed and moody effect! I LOVE how this looks!!!

Love You Bunches: Playful Whimsical Dresser Makeover | Traceys Fancy



Read Decoupage 101 on Wood Furniture Blog HERE (including curved surfaces)

Or... Watch my Decoupage YouTube video HERE.

Or... Learn How to Decoupage on FABRIC  HERE.


Striping the Top Dresser Surfaces for More Playful Whimsy

There are TWO top surfaces.

A lower one that everyone can see...and then an upper one that would be seen from the staircase at Kathy's house.

This piece will be used right in front of the I needed both surfaces painted.

Love You Bunches: Playful Whimsical Dresser Makeover | Traceys Fancy

I chose to do these in black and white stripes (Drop Cloth and Caviar) using my tape & burnish method.

Painting Checks on Playful Whimsical Dresser... Lots of Them!

The most labor intensive portion of this piece is the checks around the perimeter of the large door. 

There are 410 of them to be exact! Yes.....410 checks drawn and painted by hand!

Love You Bunches: Playful Whimsical Dresser Makeover | Traceys Fancy

So worth it though!!!

Crisp Colorful Lines on the Front Legs

The two front legs are so cute I could kiss them!

Pink, gold, black and white.....crisp lines and detailed to perfection!

It would have been really easy to just paint them solid gold.....or just black and white.

It's that added detail that sets your work apart from most!!!

crisp lines on front legs of playful whimsical dresser | Traceys Fancy

I hope you will keep this in mind when creating!

Double Dipped Stripes on Playful Whimsical Dresser

The double-dipped stripes across the skirt were a last minute thought...I absolutely love them!

I did this by double loading my brush with Peony Pink and an acrylic heavy bodied orange.

Such a great combination of colors!

double dipped brush for stripes on playful whimsical dresser

I had originally planned for these to be black and white.

However I felt like we had enough black and white already....and I really wanted to marry the sun and the moon colors in another spot....and I saw this as the perfect place to do so!

double dipped stripes on playful whimsical dresser | Traceys Fancy

Playful Bold & Bright Leopard Print

Can we talk about that left panel leopard print?? It is bold!

This may be way to much for some...but trust's SO Kathy! 


The bold pink of Peony.....layered with gigantic shimmery gold leopard spots?  WHY NOT?

Love You Bunches: Playful Whimsical Dresser Makeover | Traceys Fancy

I've done this same size and even larger on walls for clients and I love it every time!

Love You Bunches! Message on Playful Whimsical Dresser

And finally....the LOVE YOU BUNCHES message running up the front of the piece!

It needed something in this space....and I love words on furniture!

using posca pen to write message on playful whimsical dresser makeover

I wanted to include a phrase that Meme used often...or something special that she said to Kathy.

I asked my daughter-in-law privately....and she gave me these words.

Love You Bunches: Playful Whimsical Dresser Makeover | Traceys Fancy

Apparently she said these words to Kathy often....and I cannot wait for Kathy to see this!

The Finished Look: Playful Whimsical Dresser Makeover

It is ALWAYS an honor to bring life back to an heirloom piece of furniture!

Love You Bunches: Playful Whimsical Dresser Makeover | Traceys Fancy

For some much as I enjoy doing them.....there is an added pressure to make the project extra special.

And because of this I space them out......over I can stay excited about these opportunities!

Love You Bunches: Playful Whimsical Dresser Makeover | Traceys Fancy

This one was a success......and I enjoyed it VERY much!

More Inspiration: Painted Jewelry Armoires

I pulled a few blogs from past projects that came to mind when working on this piece! I hope you can use them to draw inspiration for your upcoming project. Here are the additional designs for your inspiration:

If the bold bright playful whimsical look really draws you in, see more in my blog Bright & Bold Whimsical Furniture Ideas.

Click on any photo below for more up-close photos and all the design details


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Love You Bunches: Playful Whimsical Dresser Makeover | Traceys Fancy

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