the easiest furniture makeover ever

Marian ParsonsAntiques, Before and Afters, Cleaning & care, Furniture Makeovers42 Comments

I spotted this piece on craigslist and I knew, despite the missing knob and dry finish, that it was a real gem.


Painting is my natural tendency, but this piece spoke to me loud and clear…  I just need a drink!  (Not that kind of drink. Although, I have heard of using vodka to clean stinky furniture, but I’ve never personally tried that one!)

What it needed was hydration.

The old finish had worn away, leaving the pretty old wood looking faded and tired.  The top had quite a few water rings and marks, so I thought it might need to be sanded, but I was concerned about losing the patina this piece has earned over more than a century.  I decided to rub a corner of the top with Hemp Oil and it woke up!

Well, good morning, handsome.


Some of the rings and marks would still show through, but I didn’t mind it.  This piece has a few scars and that’s okay.  He’s old and, as my dad says, “Chicks dig scars.”


And here is how it looks after just one application of Hemp Oil, which took about 15 minutes.  Just brush it on and wipe off the excess.


One knob was missing and another one was broken, so I replaced them with a set of old knobs I picked up at an antique store a couple of weeks ago.  They were so fitting for the piece.  I did keep the old ones to reuse when the right piece falls into my hands.


The wood is just gorgeous.

(I know my father in law will love this makeover.)


And this handsome guy’s got little wheels.  Come on.



People usually come to me for painted pieces, so we’ll see if it sells at Lucketts.  If it doesn’t, I’m claiming it for one of my boys.


So, there we go.  Hemp Oil, 15 minutes, new knobs, done.

Makeover with hemp oil

PS –

I just discovered I’ve been walking around all day with a dryer sheet up my sleeve.

the easiest furniture makeover ever

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42 Comments on “the easiest furniture makeover ever”

  1. Amazing transformation Marion! Hemp oil to the rescue. I just love the pieces you’ve created for Lucketts. ❤️❤️❤️

  2. Okay…I’m officially convinced that I need the hemp oil in my life. Going tomorrow to buy some! Good call using the oil, that was all it needed to make it shine! I have an urge to paint *almost* everything, as well. But I’ve run into a few pieces that I bought and I just couldn’t imagine covering up the beautiful wood. What a fantastic find..I am having such a dry spell with Craigslist, lately. Gorgeous, as per usual, Marian!

  3. What a stunning piece! You have a great eye Marian! Love both painted and natural wood pieces… I think you made the right choice here. 🙂

  4. Dryer sheet up your sleeve? That’s how the old mosquito repellent rumor got started, you know. Some man several years ago made up that story when his buddies started teasing him about one hanging out of his shirt… haha!

    If someone asks you what perfume you’re wearing just tell them “Eau de Bounce!”

  5. Hahahaha! Dryer sheet, love how normal that is! The dresser is gorgeous! I bought some of the hemp oil a few months ago and applied it to a supe dried out antique oak table from my in-laws and it worked miracles! It looks like I stained the piece, it revived so well. Unfortunately, I forgot to take a before picture, but I couldn’t believe my eyes! I have since applied it to all my unpainted wood furniture, it’s amazing!

  6. Beautiful save for this lovely old piece. I know he is grateful. I found a sweet little cabinet at the flea market and brought it home and decided to just oil it as well. it is gorgeous and now graces my living room. it always reminds you that natural wood can be beautiful. Love the dryer sheet…..have an excellent weekend!

  7. Nice job, Marian! I’m sure someone will scoop it up at Lucketts. It’s such a simple and pretty piece with great details and super cute vintage knobs. I’m sure you smelled delightful b/c of the dryer sheet as well 😉

    SO looking forward to seeing you and Kriste at Lucketts this year. I hope your booth is completely empty on the last day!

  8. I have tried using vodka to remove smells from a dresser. It was a particularly stinky one, and I was getting desperate. It turned out to be a waste of perfectly good vodka 😉 That dryer sheet that was up your sleeve would have been a better option 😉

  9. It’s a beautiful piece. Hemp oil works wonders. They dryer sheet thing, I’ve been there too. Enjoy Lucketts.

  10. Last Sunday for our big family Easter gathering my assignment was to bring one of my famous cheese trays…and hemp oil. Thankfully I remembered both! The hemp oil spruced up a vintage cutting board for my sister, and the cheese tray we used it for was outstanding!

  11. Marian, You inspired me to do this with a dresser. I put a coat of hemp oil on the top and decided that I want the piece to be a tad darker. Am I able to stain over hemp oil or do I need to sand it down first.

  12. Love this! I bought a small desk and did exactly the same thing! Hemp oil is great! Thanks to you I have used it on so many things and now they are more lovely and not dried out!

  13. I really like the difference the hemp oil made. It’s lovely. Now the knobs? Not crazy about them. But you said they are so fitting so I bow to your expertise.
    Dryer sheet up your sleeve, hah, I hate that when it happens to me! Feel silly! Even worse when it’s a sock!

  14. Beautiful piece but I noticed you never show the inside of the drawers of your dressers. I always clear-coat the insides so they are clean for the new owner. Do you ever do anything to the drawers or leave them natural?

    1. No, I don’t seal paint or finish the inside of drawers. I clean them out and will add some shelf liner if the drawers are rough inside (or we sometimes replace the wood bottom to give it a fresh start.) I try to keep the cost of my pieces affordable, so I don’t spend time on them that I don’t feel is necessary.

  15. So beautiful! Thanks for sharing about the dryer sheet. I laughed “with you” over that. Have a great weekend. : )

  16. You crack me up! Last week I walked around all day – on vacation with a sock stuck inside my pant leg! The dresser is beautiful!

  17. Aha! I knew you were a magician (when you do your magic on all these pieces you find) and do have something up your sleeve. heehee 🙂
    Love this dresser-gorgeous!

  18. Love it! Also can relate to the PS. I went to the Y the other day and when I look off my sweatshirt, a pair of underwear fell out of my sleeve! Yikes! I’d prefer a dryer sheet!

  19. This is a great idea. I just used coconut oil on my table for the first time and it made a huge difference too. I will try the hemp oil next time. Gorgeous dresser by the way and so glad you didn’t paint it. I love painted furniture but this one, as you said, just needed a drink to be perfect.

  20. Is hemp oil what you use on your wooden cutting boards? Also, can it be used on furniture that has been stained and has a finish (not sure what kind) that is wearing thin? My daughter has an oak dining room table that has almost ebony stain that needs help. I am thinking that hemp oil might just bead up? Thanks!

  21. Very nice!!
    One winter I spent half a day with a pair of knickers up my woolen jumper sleeve after grabbing it from the dryer on my way out the door haha

  22. The piece is so pretty. I’ve never used hemp oil. I’ll have to give it a try. The little wheels remind me of some on a piece of furniture I have ( pre-Civil War).
    Dryer sheet !!!!?

  23. I need to get some of that hemp oil, I once had a pair of underwear stuck in the leg of my trousers…clean from the wash thank goodness but still weird none the less. The dresser looks awesome, I kinda hope it does not sell, it looks amazing and strong for a boys room. Hugs, Di

  24. I just love how you treat each piece so individually, bringing out its best. Loved the dryer sheet thing. :O)

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