Antique French Commode Makeover


After making some recent changes with new nightstands in the master, which I have been sharing on instagram and will on the blog soon, the antique French commode that did serve as my nightstand now serves as my dresser in place of the very big dresser I had. Okay that was a very long running sentence and I hope you got all that. 😑 Anyway, what I'm getting to is the French commode a.k.a. antique chest was looking a bit too yellow in the room and needed to be updated. The new nightstands are called Parisian white, but they look gray so with that I decided to paint the chest again. This antique French commode was the very first paint project I shared on the blog in my second post in 2010 and you can check it out here.

Here is how it did look and I was actually very nervous to paint it again, but I'm so glad I did.

I had several on instagram ask me to share how I painted it and the steps. I can't do an exact tutorial, but will share what I did.
 First up remove all the drawers and clean the piece. I used a deglosser on the top, but just wiped down the rest with a damp cloth. Since I was using chalk paint there is no need to sand and prime first.

I wasn't sure what color I was going to do and it certainly ended up way different than I thought. Base coat is French Linen in Annie Sloan Chalk Paint that I had on hand. 

Here's another view.

I thought I was going to do a base coat of this color in Pure & Original chalk based paint, but the French Linen was actually a bit darker. I painted the second coat with the Flannel Gray which looked much lighter in person than this looks.

See how light this is! So after this I wasn't sure what I was going to do because this would have been to matchy to the nightstands. So I put on my creative thinking cap.

I looked in my stash and found a can of Annie Sloan Chalk Paint in Greek Blue which actually looks bluer than this image. Since it is such a vibrant bold blue I found a jar of another chalk based paint in Raw Silk which is a white and added it to the blue to lighten it.

I didn't stop and take pictures of each blue step. Once I get in the zone I just keep painting. Here you can see the color of the blue on the drawer fronts before I started adding the dark wax and the sides I have added the wax. Let me back up a bit I actually rubbed Hemp Oil all over the chest with a rag first and then started applying the dark wax.I like to apply the oil or a clear wax before using a dark wax so I can easily take some of the dark wax back off easily if I need to. If you add dark wax to the chalk paint without the clear wax or an oil the paint really grabs the dark wax and it's hard to take back off if you get it too dark. I also highlighted the details down the legs and the pieces at the bottom of the front with Bone in the Classico Pure & Original paint.

I had rubbed some dark wax on the white to tone it down, but once I placed it in the room it was still too white.

I grabbed my trusty Rubn' Buff in Antique Gold to tone down the white. The spots on the top drawer in the right corner were made when the paint was wet and I sprayed water here and there. It ages the piece and let's the other colors show through.

To recap the steps:

1. Clean and prep
2. Base coat of French Linen Annie Sloan Chalk Paint all over.
3. Coat of Flannel Gray Classico Pure & Original paint.
4. Coat of Annie Sloan in Greek Blue mixed with white paint.
5. Hemp oil applied all over.
6. Classico Pure & Original in Bone on raised details.
7. Annie Sloan dark wax all over and wiped back leaving the dark wax in the crevices.
8. Rubn' Buff in Antique Gold on the raised details.

Stand back and admire your work!

I will share how this room looks soon since both nightstands are in place now.


  1. You did a lovely job. I love the new look.

  2. It looks beautiful! I love it!

  3. OOOH!! Just gorgeous!!! You are very talented and gifted. I can not wait to see the night stands!Love Love Love this piece!

  4. It looks amazing...another great job as always!

  5. Wow! You did an amazing job on this piece. I loved it before and I love it now!

  6. Love what you did, such a gorgeous piece! And I need to go and get me the Rubn' Buff, it's the cherry on top. 😍

  7. Beautiful job, love the color

  8. BEAUTIFUL! I love the water marks.

  9. BEAUTIFUL! I love the water marks.

  10. When did you spray the water on. Shouldn't that be included in your steps? Love how it turned out!

    1. That's just something new I tried and I said I sprayed it on while the paint was wet.

  11. Wowsie this came out beautiful. Such a pretty piece.

  12. Hey Kim, You did an amazing job. Have you ever published over at Home Talk? I think the crowd over there would love this. Could bring you some new followers as well! Content like this is why we added you to our best sites to follow in 2019. Have a look.

    Thanks again,


  13. Gorgeous update on a beautiful piece. I wonder if using AS Aubusson Blue would look similar...I have that in my stash.