Painted Antique Vanity with Stained Top

This painted antique vanity with a stained top has become one of my most popular pieces! I wanted to share with you the technique I used to create this beautiful result. It’s seriously so easy, you just have to be brave enough to try it.

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As always, the first step you must do when refinishing a piece of furniture; clean it! Dixie Belle makes a great cleaner called White Lightning. It’s a concentrated powder that you dissolve in a spray bottle of water. Just spray your piece and start wiping it down. Follow with a spray bottle of clear water to wipe off the residue.

To Restain the Top

Instead of painting, I wanted to have a stained top on this vanity. To do this, I needed to strip off the old stain and varnish. This is a fairly easy process using the right products. In this case, I used a stripper (bow chicka wow wow), sorry, I can’t help myself. 

I did a Facebook Live showing this process. Basically, you spray the stripper on your piece, wait about 15 minutes, then remove the old stain with a scraper.

 It’s messy, but effective. You may need to repeat this process a few times to remove all of the old stain. I then lightly sanded, and applied Dixie Belle Voodoo Gel Stain in Tobacco Road. This can be applied with a brush or cloth just like traditional stain.

Dry Brushing Your Paint

I. Love. Dry Brushing. This may be my favorite technique. In this case I wanted to have some of the original dark color of the vanity come through. To do this very lightly dry brush your first coat of paint. In this case I went with Dixie Bell’s In The Navy. I like my darker color to be on the bottom.

To dry brush, just dip the tip of your paintbrush into your paint then blot it on a paper towel. Apply very light brush strokes with a feather light touch.

You can see how the original finish sort of peeks through the first coat of paint.

Next, add your top layer of paint. The process is much the same, only this time, apply the paint a little heavier, but not heavy. You’re still dry brushing on the paint. If you get too much paint in a particular area, don’t panic. Let that area dry then very lightly dry brush a little of your darker color over it.


In The Navy Chalk Mineral PaintVintage Duck Egg Chalk Mineral Paint

Notice how the In the Navy and the original finish comes through.


Now is the time to add in your details. Accent your decorative areas; these are the areas with carving or raised areas. For this piece, some Sterling Silver Gilding Wax was perfect!

Dixie Belle Gilding Wax

I also add contact paper to my drawer bottoms and sides for that extra attention to details that customers really appreciate.

Finish with a Top Coat

While Dixie Belle Paints do not require a top coat as the paint cures in 30 days, I still always add that extra protection. With  pieces that will get a lot of wear and tear like table tops, etc, the added protection is a good idea. Three coats of Dixie Belle Clear Coat for the top and two coat for the rest will do nicely. For dining tables or desks, I’d use Gator Hide– this is Dixie Belle’s most durable finish.

An Economical Finish

Dry brushing is not only beautiful, it’s also very economical since you use so little paint. Seriously, I barely used any paint from the two 8 oz jars. I got great coverage and have enough paint left to do several pieces in this style.

Don’t hesitate to give this a try!

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  1. Marie Rizzo
    September 13, 2023 @ 10:44 am

    Hi the painted vanities are absolutely gorgeous are any of them for sale to buy


    • Kelly
      September 21, 2023 @ 11:51 am

      Marie- Thank you so much!! All of the vanities that I’ve painted are sold. I’ve actually stopped painting furniture at this time. The best places to find great re-purposed older pieces is local vendor malls. I’m not sure where you’re located but hopefully there are some local craft/antique/vendor malls nearby to check out. Thanks so again- I’m glad you stopped by. Blessings- Kelly


  2. Misty
    June 24, 2020 @ 9:21 am

    You are so sweet and so talented! I just happened upon your website while looking through Pinterest and I am really enjoying your tutorials!! Thank you so much for sharing your beautiful work!


    • Kelly
      June 24, 2020 @ 10:51 am

      Misty- You’re so kind! I’m happy you found me and are enjoying what you find here. Thank you for taking a moment to stop in and say hello. Blessings- Kelly


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