Using Paint Instead of Stain

This dresser was a mess when we brought it home, and had more damage than any other piece I’ve tackled before. It’s hard to believe when you view the “Before” photo but you’ll just have to trust me on this one! The top was way past re-staining, with tons of patch work everywhere, so I opted for paint instead. I had been wanting to try “Leather Boots” in American Paint Company’s Ellis Collection, and this was my chance.

The paint on it’s own reminds me of chocolate pudding, but add some dark wax and you’ve got the perfect espresso brown! You can see the difference in my image below, with Leather Boots on my sample paint stick that is sitting on top of the dresser. I’m really impressed with how the painted top turned out.

The body of the dresser is finished in “Home Plate” by APC, and it’s a lovely creamy white. I simply applied clear wax over the top, because this is a mahogany dresser and they are known for bleeding! I should also let you know that I used two coats of primer on the entire dresser, before painting, because of this.

This piece is still far from perfect, but I can live with it’s imperfections, hence we’ve decided to keep this one and replace the dresser in our master bedroom with it.

LB Dresser 2

LB Dresser 3

leather boots w dark wax

LB Dresser Before


  1. This is a fantastic make over! Love how you used Leather Boots and kept the original hardware!

  2. What a beautiful piece. You did it justice!

  3. Lavonne Norvell-Yalkut says

    Wow! This is a beautiful transformation! I have never seen paint that replicates stain. Great job!

  4. The mahogany pieces are so hard to work with due to bleeding, they are SO pretty when done. Your piece is amazing.

  5. Love this! And how the dark wax can change the paint! So many possibilities!

  6. Babara Renfrow says

    Love to be on your blog!

  7. Natalie DZ says

    This is gorgeous! I’d love more information on how you added the wax. Where do you find the wax you used? So pretty!!!

  8. Love this piece!! It has become my inspiration piece for our dining room buffet. Could you let me know what type of primer you used? I am painting a 1960’s family buffet and top of the dining room table. The table especially is in desperate need of refinishing, and we have decided to give painting it a try. Thank you for my go to photo.

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