Do It Yourself Projects

A Whimsical Scandinavian Inspired Chest of Drawers

I have a major soft spot for whimsical hand painted furniture. I just love it when someone takes the time to sketch out a design and then has the talent to paint out that design and make it work on furniture.

I will say that Miss Mustard Seed is my favorite at this technique so far. She has done some amazing hand painted work on furniture. Just check out some of the pieces she has done below:



mms tree

How beautiful are her pieces .. not to mention the styling and photo quality. I had a hard time deciding what design I wanted to paint and what piece I had that could pull off this kind of redo.

Enter this sweet old pine chest of drawers…


I knew that I wanted to do this piece in a very soft grey blue with a white hand painted design. I cracked out a few bags of my trusty Sweet Pickins Milk Paint and mixed up a custom blend using the colours Window Pane, Galvanized and Sweetie Jane. Make sure that when you make a custom blend you either record the quantities of each colour used or make plenty because if you run out with one drawer left it will be nearly impossible to replicate the exact colour. I found this out the hard way and had to repaint my entire piece!!

Here is a snapshot of me doing what I love best, painting inside on a cold day in my PJ’s haha … I know classy woman right!!


For the top of the piece I decided to go with a stain to break it up. I used a blend of walnut and classic grey to get a washed out subdued drift wood-esque effect.

Now for the fun part!! Sketch out a design and hand paint it.. I decided that I wanted to paint a series of flowers similar to the first inspiration picture above and all would be perfect…. Well I think I was a tad ambitious for my first project. As much as I got in the zone and embraced my inner arty farty it just wasn’t happening for me. The flowers (if you could call them that) looked like blobs and smears and were completely flat and hideous. I was pretty crushed at this point but I decided to wait until my husband came home and I could get his thoughts. Well he took a look at it and said…. “good job” … with a big smile … and at that point I knew I would be sanding the design off and painting over it with the main colour haha. He was being very sweet but I just had to look at his face to see that he didn’t love it and neither did I.

I felt pretty sad about having the piece back to plain paint on the drawer fronts… so I decided to try and find some more inspiration that would be a bit easier to achieve.

Enter this cherry blossom design (also by Miss Mustard Seed)

mms cherry blos

I decided to practice a little on some cardboard first which I am glad that I did. Once I felt like I had gotten the hang of the basic strokes needed to create something like this I went back to the drawer fronts. Using chalk I sketched out the basic design and then got painting. I was very doubtful and a tad scared but as I got going I could see it all coming together. And then it was done! I sat back and stared at it with the hubby for probably longer than necessary and then decided that I liked it … I tumbled into bed that night without having waxed the piece as I decided that if in the morning I didn’t love it then I would paint over it and give up on the hand painted design business.

The next day I got up and had a look at it with a fresh mind and decided that I actually love it. The design looked so whimsical and pretty and the whole colour scheme just worked so beautifully. I gave the piece a light sand and clear waxed it to protect the paint. Then I chose some gorgeous white ceramic knobs to freshen it up.

And she was done!

pic 8

I just love the hand painted feel of this piece, there is so much soft detail to this piece and it is so feminine and a little Scandinavian too.

pic 7

The white handles in my opinion are the cherry on top for this piece. They tied in perfectly with the whole ‘feel’ of the piece.


I think this piece is so versatile. It would look lovely in a living area with a lamp on it or in a bedroom, or even in a baby/little girls room as a changing table or socks and singlet drawers.

This piece is for sale and can be viewed in person in our shop or full details online under out SHOP – FURNITURE tab.

What are your thoughts?

Adriana πŸ™‚ x

7 replies »

  1. That’s beautiful Adriana πŸ™‚ Such a lovely colour and pattern πŸ™‚ I still have a couple of bags of milk paint that I bought from you. I really need to play with it a bit more as I am mainly, at this stage using chalk paint, but I like the milk paint finish (chippy look). Hope all is going well with you guys and that the shop is doing well πŸ™‚ Hubby and I are starting an online store so that hopefully I can cut back the hours at work here and do more work from home and therefore more painting πŸ™‚ Fingers crossed πŸ™‚ Next time I ma planning a trip to Ballarat I’ll pop in to say hello πŸ™‚ Cheers, Aida Date: Fri, 8 Apr 2016 02:07:14 +0000 To:

    • Thank you so much Aida, yes the milk paint is so rewarding to work with, I love it!! How exciting for you, I hope it all goes great, you will do well. Yes please pop in when you are down this way, I would love to see you. Adriana x

  2. Wow, as you know, I love your pieces, and am learning so much from you! This piece is gorgeous, well done to you, and super duper done for your patience. I don’t know if I could ever do it! (the patterns I mean). I’m still painting my cabinet, after painting it, and then hating the colour. So here I start again…..ooh boy LOL (for the love of messing it all up) haha

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