Update Wood Night Stands

Recently an old friend reached out to me looking for a pair of night stands for her master bedroom.  I didn’t have anything on hand, but I quickly sourced this cute little set of Ethan Allen night stands on Facebook Marketplace. 

She loved them!  She asked for a layered gray finish, inspired by this cedar chest I’d done several years back.

cedar chest after

They were in great condition, and they have such a cute little shape. 

ethan allen night stands before

Here are the supplies I used.

Resource List:

(Note: These are affiliate links for which I earn a small commission at no extra cost to you.  Thanks for your support!)

If you want tons of information on Dixie Belle paint and products, you can check out this Comprehensive Guide post, and you can download it free here by clicking the picture:

No Base Coat

This finish is super simple because you don’t even need a base coat.  After cleaning, you just jump right in with your first color.  The technique uses a very dry brush.  Dip about ½” of the bristles in the paint.  Scrape the brush off on the side of the paint pot, and then wipe the brush off even more on a paper towel. 

You can use any 3-4 colors you like with this technique too, so just think of all the variations you can get.  My look is neutral, but depending on the colors you could go bold, colorful, rustic, etc.  And it’s a far easier technique for a beginner than learning blending!

With very light criss-cross motions, apply the darkest color (Gravel Road) around the piece.  This will not provide full or even coverage. 

ethan allen night stand front view
ethan allen night stand 1

Adding Layers of Color

For my second color, I mixed a 50/50 blend of Gravel Road and Manatee Gray.  I used the same dry brush criss-cross technique to apply the second color.  I hit some of the areas that were bare wood and overlapped the Gravel Road as well. 

Since it’s such a small amount of paint, you don’t even have to wait for it to dry to move on to the next color (Manatee Gray).  Lastly, repeat the same process for the lightest color (Fluff).

ethan allen night stands top

By the time you reach the final layer, you’ll see the colors coming together in a cohesive finish.  If you want to go back and add any of the darker colors back in, you can. 

ethan allen night stand detail

Finishing Touches

I gave the night stands a light sanding with fine sand paper to make them smooth to the touch, and I sealed them with Clear Coat Satin.  Those cute silver pulls came from Ace Hardware. 

If you liked this project, you may enjoy these other night stand projects as well:

If you enjoyed this makeover, head on over to Shop my Faves and pick out some paint and products for your next project!

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9 thoughts on “Update Wood Night Stands”

  1. Thanks so much for sharing this with us at Farmhouse Friday!

    1. Shannon says:

      Of course, thank you! xo Shannon

  2. What a fabulous makeover !! Love it.
    Thank you for sharing with us at Meraki Link Party.

  3. Rebecca Payne says:

    So cute! great job.

    1. Shannon says:

      Thanks, Rebecca!

  4. I love how they turned out! Dry-brushing is one of my favorite painting methods. I like the colors you’ve used here. I’ve been looking for a technique/colors to mimic the driftwood effect and this one look promising. Thank you for sharing!

    1. Shannon says:

      Thanks so much! I hope you give it a try! xo Shannon

  5. Very nice! It really updated them!

    1. Shannon says:

      Thanks, Donna!

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