Sooo…there is a dresser that’s been hanging around in the studio for months.  It’s a beautiful empire piece with some amazing graining on the drawers and I just wasn’t ready to paint it.  I pushed it against the wall and waited until inspiration struck.

miss mustard seed-4113

I was thinking about the dresser one evening and it hit me… Boxwood.  It would look stately and fitting for the lines and size of the piece.

I’ve had some extra help in the studio the last couple of weeks.  Cari, aka “The Machine” is back to help with stripping chairs.  And, we’ve had a new helper, Megan from Mercy in the Middle.  She attended one of my painting workshops and later reached out and asked if she could come help us get ready for Lucketts.  We clicked at the workshop, so I said yes.  Anyone who volunteers to be covered in dust and splattered with paint is a friend in my book!

photo presentation-5684

When Megan attended the workshop, that was her first time painting a piece of furniture and she did a really good job, so I felt like I could let her loose on something I was intending to sell.  I motioned towards the dresser, indicating that’s what I had for her to work on.  I jokingly said, “Some people are going to be really mad at whoever paints this.  I’ll let you do it, so they’ll be mad at you and not me!”

No, no.  If you’re not happy it’s painted, you can give me grief.  If you love it, then you need to give Megan the praise.  She did all of the painting (very well, I might add) and I just did the light distressing and finishing it with Hemp Oil.

 And here’s the result…




A few readers have asked how I handle chipped veneer.  If it’s not flapping, bubbled or loose, I just paint over it.  I don’t want to try to make this piece look like it’s brand new.  It’s old and I’m just going to let it be old.



I am mixing a lots of greens & grays with my usual blue & white for my booth at Lucketts this year, so this dresser will fit right in.

Boxwood dresser Collage

Kriste and I had a successful shopping trip today and my mom came over this evening to help me get a few more things done while the boys were at a church function.

I can’t wait to share more of our finds and projects.  There’s always lots going on leading up to Lucketts!


  1. Lucinda

    Love this piece painted. Chips and all.

  2. Jane

    I’m not egocentric enough to get mad about a choice someone else made about THEIR piece of furniture but I think it would have looked GORGEOUS with the dresser painted and the drawers left. I see that on Better After now and then. The chips on the bottom drawer could have been dabbed with a dark stain to hide them. Two tone is not your thing?

    • Sheila

      I agree. Those drawer fronts were gorgeous.

      • April

        Agree, body in black with distressing. 🙂

    • marian

      Yes, I actually love the two-tone look, but not for this piece. The wood was very red and the drawers would’ve needed to be stripped and refinished.

  3. Lauren Baxter

    I love how your adding so much green to your booth with the blue’s and the grays it’s going to be so welcoming and vibrant! I love this dresser, and Megan you did a fabulous job way to go! I love the crystal knobs they just finish it off so well I would buy this in a second.

    Lauren | LB Designs

  4. Desi

    Boxwood can be a tricky color to work with. Megan did a great job!

  5. Wendy from

    I love it that you don’t reinvent your wheels, you give them a second chance.
    “it’s old, I’m just going to let it be old “. 🙂

  6. jennifer

    It does look lovely. But…..the Lego dresser……it would have made the perfect “twin” with boxwood — those drawers were beautiful!!!!! I’m sorry – I had to say it. I do like it though and the knobs are amazing!!!!!

  7. Amy D

    Marian, I can’t wait to see your space at Luckett’s this year! I’m glad you’ll be adding some greens and gray, too. I’m really loving green right now. The dresser looks great!

  8. Jenny B.

    It’s beautiful! I love that color. It was beautiful before too, but I would be happier with it in my house with it being painted. And it’s good that Megan painted it because if I had bought it unpainted, I would have chickened out, never painted it, and then never really loved it. I’m sure whoever buys it at Lucketts will be super happy she painted it too. 🙂

  9. teresa

    Beautiful…so wonderful to take an old piece and freshen it up. Have a great day

  10. Toni

    I would probably never choose Boxwood and yet I love the results. Thank goodness you are that adventurous person that shows us how things can be improved. I’m like Jenny B. – I’d probably never take the leap and would miss out…


    This turned out really great. I wasn’t really sure how the boxwood would come through but I really like it. I also lover your display pieces….the luggage is awesome. It seems like you kind of have a Santa’s workshop going will all of the elves.

  12. Ellen

    I love Boxwood and think this piece looks amazing! Kudos to Megan (and you!)!

  13. Deanna

    I love it in Boxwood! It looks great!

  14. Jelena

    That dresser looks good in green. Great job painting, Megan!
    Still, the dresser somehow looks “plain.” I am almost expecting to see some kind of hand painted design on those drawers. 🙂

  15. cheapdiva

    Great job, MEGAN!! I love boxwood and used it on an old buffet that we use as a tv stand/storage. Such a rich color and everyone that sees it makes positive comments about the color.

  16. MaryLisa Noyes

    The dresser is a great piece. I would like more chipping but that is me and my love for distressed…enjoy.

  17. Rowena Philbeck

    Love the piece and great to know about the veneer. I have a Possum Belly that I want to refinish but both sides are buckling. One is better as I stripped off the buckling veneer but the other side is harder, the wood totaled not just the veneer. Trying to see what to do about that. The rest is solid wood and drawers all is great condition and the rollers as well. Very cool piece. I love the color you chose as well.

  18. Sheila

    Well, it’s too late now,but, it would have been nice if she had left the drawer fronts in the original finish and painted the body of the dresser. Maybe another time.

  19. marian

    Yeah, I thought about that, but they needed to be stripped and refinished and they were very red, so I was concerned with how the wood tone would mesh with the green.

  20. Sherry Fram

    I liked the piece before you (Megan) painted it but I like it even more after. Love the color and all the chips and dings that make it what it is. Great job!

  21. Maybee's Mom

    Boxwood reminds me of the color that alot of old outdoor furniture and porch floors were painted in the 40’s and 50’s. An old furniture doctor told me to use a hot iron and old towel over old pulling up and bubbling veneer. Hide glue pulled away in the elements of being stored in unheated buildings. the heat will activate it a bit I have done this several times and it works…I always enjoy your adventures through painting. Maybee’s MOM

  22. Gretta

    I couldn’t paint over book-matched burl that was in such fantastic condition. I agree with Jane (and others) that the body of the chest could have been painted, with no paint on the drawer fronts. That kind of woodworking needs to be preserved, not hidden. I also don’t care for that green shade, but don’t find it to be a problem — but the painted-over burl will haunt my dreams.

  23. Pamela @

    Lovely transformation. I have not been a big fan of boxwood though I love green and yet it turned out perfect on this piece. I am glad I could see it done up the way you envisioned. Makes me see how I limit myself by a first impression of a color when I should be more open that it just needs the right piece to shine.

  24. laurie

    this turned out Perfectly!! the color really suits the shape.

  25. Jeanie

    I am not a love of painted furniture as I have a lot of Oak pieces. I do love green though and your dresser looks great!!

  26. Judy

    I love how it turned out. I always do and it inspires me to do something different other than “keep the wood” which is what my traditional upbringing would sway me to do, but not necessarily what I would really want. Thanks for the boost of confidence!

  27. Nsomi S.

    Those drawers WERE BEAUTIFUL! If I hadn’t seen the dresser before I would totally LOVE the Boxwood one. I mean, I DO totally love the Boxwood one. But those drawers were SO gorgeous. Altho’ I appreciate the amount of work it would have taken to refinish them. I don’t know….here’s what i wish: that the dresser had been painted and the drawers left alone so we could have seen just what that would have looked like. That would have given a chance to know better what the right decision about painting the drawers was. Wouldn’t it? Maybe not. Oh, gosh….I still love the green dresser and I just won’t think about the original drawers! I just know that I’m not brave enough to have painted those drawers! I give you a gold star, Marian, for your courage and vision!

  28. Frankie

    Beautiful transformation! I love Boxwood and it looks spectacular on this piece. I’m not sure I’d have given the dresser in its original condition a 2nd glance, but now that it’s painted I sure do wish it were mine!

  29. Kalie

    I’m working with boxwood and painting a beautiful antique buffet and having an issue with brighter green showing up in large blotches all over the piece. I’ve been diligent at stirring the paint while I’m working. Any tips on getting boxwood to be a more consistent color all over the piece?


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Marian Parsons - Miss Mustard Seed

I’m Marian, aka Miss Mustard Seed, a wife, mother, paint enthusiast, lover of all things home and an entrepreneur, author, artist, designer, freelance writer & photographer.  READ MORE to learn more about me, my blog and my business…


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