Campaign Furniture

I have a slightly unhealthy obsession with vintage campaign furniture.

Did you see Vanessa De Vargas' kelly green campaign style console in the latest Lonny? {By the way, if you're not reading Lonny (a FREE online magazine) you're really missing out!}



Campaign furniture can be pricey, especially in vintage furniture stores (where they know what they have) but sometimes you can luck out on Craigslist. I recently bought a pair of dressers with removable shelves for our bedroom, which is slowly but surely getting decorated.

CL seller's photo (not too appealing, right? It's all about the potential!)

The set was $60 and was in decent condition (not too many scratches) but it was DIRTY!!


Check out the nasty, dingy brass hardware before:


I used Bar Keeper's Friend to soak and scrub off all the grime.


Then it was time to paint. I wiped down all the surfaces really well and vacuumed out the inside of the dressers. Everything was primed with Zinssers using a mini-roller.


Then I used a brush to paint all the corners and awkward parts of the dressers and shelves.


A mini roller was used to apply two to three coats of paint (Benjamin Moore's 'Hamptons Green' in semi-gloss latex).


This weekend our bedroom is getting all the finishing touches, so come back next week for the reveal and projects recap. Though, I have to say, my motherly instincts are telling me that I'm going to have the baby sooner than later...?

83 comments:

Bailey @ peppermintbliss said...

I mean, this is seriously inspiring. Attaway to go girl! And if you did this while super preggers, well then I feel even worse about myself!

Katie said...

Saw it in Lonny and LOVED the piece! I need to start looking for a piece! If you'll do the rehab...

Danielle said...

I noticed that same green dresser. I love your piece too!

Esther said...

beautiful. absolutely beautiful. i love the simplicity of your version cuz the lines are so clean and the brass simply pops! :)

Anonymous said...

I've never heard of campaign furniture before, but I'm now adding this to my list to look for during my daily craigslist scrounge.

Katherine said...

Wow turned out beautiful! I love your style- good luck with the coming weeks :)

Southern Aspirations said...

this is fantastic! haven't gotten to read the latest issue yet, but cannot wait.

great job!!

Virginia @ Where You Hang Your Hat said...

Just beautiful.

Shannon said...

So, I'm curious, did the craigslist seller know what they had. I'm just wondering if it was listed as campaign furniture, or you just happened upon it? Love your work keep it up!

leigh said...

It looks great!! What a lucky find. I can't wait to see the rest of your room!

ALVN of WhisperWood Cottage and Junkologie said...

Jenny,

You have outdone yourself! This is stunning!!

Amy

Jennifer said...

I thought of you when I saw that in Lonny -- and it looks like it's two pieces?

I passed on a cute little BAKER campaign chest at an auction (had already spent my budget when it came up) and I am still kicking myself for it. Especially after I saw it's twin at Scott's for three times the price ...

Jenny said...

Shannon- the seller did know and listed the set as 'Campaign style dressers'. I usually search for 'campaign' or 'campaigner' when I'm looking for this type of furniture. There are just too many results for 'vintage dresser' or whatever - though, if you have some time to kill, just put the word 'vintage' in eBay or Craigslist and you'll be sure to find a gold mine!

Anonymous said...

Looks great! I have a similar cabinet without the corner brass detailing. Know anywhere I can find brass hardware like that?

Anna See said...

That looks great! What a wonderful job you did.

Melissa said...

I LOVE it. I've been dithering on a piece at our goodwill all week-- although I have to say the "property of the Greensboro Housing Authority" sticker is what's been keeping me from buying. I don't get it. Can't wait to see the reveal-- and talk about staying busy and nesting!

M said...

Beautiful! You did such an amazing job refinishing that. Now I'm going to be on a constant CL search.

Southern Mom said...

I love it! I'm so impressed you did this while almost 9 months pregnant! How many hours did it take?

Rachel said...

I agree with Bailey ... how do you find the time?

Anyways, you have inspired me to search on craigs list more often.

Tanya and Colin said...

You did such a great job! Love it! Can't wait to see your finished room.

Cara said...

I have never hear of Lonny before, I will have to go check it out. Thanks!

MyLittleHappyPlace said...

WHAT a transformation! And what an Eagle Eye you have for what-could-be! "See" you next week - unless Baby Girl decides to make her appearance! ;)

Erin @ SYL: Slipcover Your Life said...

I can't believe you got that amazing piece for 60 bucks! Can't wait to see more pics!!!

tarheel said...

That is fabulous! You are too much{esp. as you are 9 months pregnant!}. At the risk of sounding selfish, I do so hope you show the reveal before that precious baby girl comes.

Michelle (Three Men and a Lady) said...

When I turn on my computer and see that you've done a post it feels like Christmas. How do you luck out on finding such great stuff? Do you just make checking CL one of your daily chores or what? Great makeover...I'm drooling!

Grace said...

Love the makeover of your dresser! What a great piece to have in your home. All the best with the baby.

Sharnel said...

it looks gorgeous and i LOVE the green one in Lonny too. It took my breath away!! lol

Jenny said...

Gorgeous!

paula said...

It;s gorgeous!

My Notting Hill said...

I've seen these pieces around - I have one identical to Vanessa De Vargas. It was my bedroom furniture from 1977!! If I had the yellow/white combo and my brother had the blue/white ones. I'm pretty sure my Mom ordered them from the Montgomery Ward catalog.

Mine was the yellow/white combo and my brother's was blue/white. I picked mine up after college and years later we used it in my son's room - but now it's in my basement waiting to be refinished. Looking forward to seeing how your one turns out.

sarah said...

Darn, you are good! So inspiring.xo

Shelly @littlemrsdoitall said...

I just wrote about campaign furniture on my blog too! I LOVE it and I think you're kind of to blame. LOL! I saw the BEST CL find a few months ago and I didn't jump on it fast enough. Ugh..that hurts!

Tamstyles said...

great job!

Nicole said...

Hmmm. I don't know if I really love it in that pale color against the pale walls- especially having seen the photos just before in black and bright.

kristy said...

This is just stunning! I am so jealous of all the amazing finds you have gotten.

jill said...

This is gorgeous, thanks for sharing!

Anonymous said...

My motherly instincts were telling me the same thing, although they were wrong and thankfully so...

After I had Nina I read an article that babies who were born even 1 week premature were more likely to have respiratory illness than babies born on or after their due date.

PS-With the dressers you totally lucked out and I'm jealous!

Anonymous said...

My motherly instincts were telling me the same thing, although they were wrong and thankfully so...

After I had Nina I read an article that babies who were born even 1 week premature were more likely to have respiratory illness than babies born on or after their due date.

PS-With the dressers you totally lucked out and I'm jealous!

Anonymous said...

You have such a good eye...

I hope you have an easy delivery....

God Bless,
Kathy :)

amesh said...

LOVE your dresser. LOVE IT LOVE IT! oh i think you're soooo talented!! can't wait for next week and i hope you have an easy delivery :)

Mckenzi and Matthew said...

Jennica! I know im one of the millions but Im really happy I can follow your work and also the upcomings of your guy's sweet, new baby girl! I had no idea it was so close! Congratulations I love you so much, can't wait to see her:)

And I love all the things you are doing! Maybe someday when we have a dime to our name I could get some seriously needed help from you! ha Good luck next week! You'll be in our prayers!

Seeker said...

New reader here! Enjoying your archives, loved the dresser makeover, and thanks for introducing me to Lonny and campaign style furniture.

Glimpsed a peek of that upholstered bed...can't wait to see the rest!

Good luck with your new arrival...I have three little girls as well :)

court. said...

I snagged some nightstands two years ago off craigslist. $40! I love this stuff!!

Barbie said...

Wow. I LOVE this look. Will be combing kraigslist...but it seems like you have the best finds all the time! You have such great taste! And how do you have the energy to do this all while you're baking a little bun in there?

The Goods Design said...

Um, amazing?!

compulsively compiled said...

Neighbors of ours a few streets over have a pair of fantastic orange cabinets in this style that are just sitting in their garage. It kills me every time I drive by. One of these days I'm going to get up the nerve to knock and ask them to name their price.

Emily A. Clark said...

What a great find! I am also loving that green in Lonny.

prashant said...

well then I feel even worse about myself!

Work from home India

GoodProspect said...

Sand in between coats? And did you use your wipe-on stuff? How?! So?! Smooth?!

Blessings on the growing family!

Hallie.

ashlina said...

i saw these green dressers in vanessa's excerpt in the find....the book. it is fantastic.
what an amazing job you did!

awesome! i thought i could only imagine that.

kanishk said...

I'm now adding this to my list to look for during my daily craigslist scrounge.

Wagyu Steaks

Sara@www.tablegrace.net said...

Jenny, Are these pieces solid wood or do they have laminate on them? I think I've found a great buy on a chest for 25 bucks!

LindsB said...

I am in love with this kind of furniture, I just posted about it today with links back to you. Hope you dont mind :)

Also, do you know of any others like this being sold in the Boston/RI area? I would be very grateful!!

Anonymous said...

I just found a great 4-drawer campaign dresser on craiglist but it's in serious need of some TLC. How did you get the metal T brackets off the furniture to clean them? I don't want to ruin anything! Thanks!

MegRuth said...

Do you know where you can find those T brass hardware? Say, if I wanted to make a boring dresser more exciting?

Kelley M said...

hi jenny! i hope it's not too late to comment on this article with a question...i just found TWO campaign dressers at a local thrift store and found your blog post really helpful. if i have a few scratches/dings in my dressers, what's the best way to fill them in (dressers are fiberboard material with varnish-y top, not real wood)? also, do you have any suggestions on sources for campaign hardware? one of the dressers is missing a couple pieces...i'd love to find a match but might end up replacing all of the hardware on that piece if necessary.

THANK YOU for your help!
kelley

Lovely Little Nest said...

Wow, this is beautiful! You did a great job.

P.S. Love the design of your blog! :)

This Photographer's Life said...

That is so lovely.... and you did that all while you are pregnant? AWESOME. What a great find. Did you search for something specific in Craigslist, or did you have to go trough all the dressers?

Lauren said...

you’ll want to know is how much room? that you have for an entertainment center. hats measure and get height, width and depth figures.

Best Office Furniture said...

I noticed that same green dresser. I love your piece too!

Lauri said...

Hello! My husband and I recently inherited a campaign dresser from his parents, only several pieces of hardware were missing. After doing some searching, I found this website that, judging from the comments to this post, several of your readers might be interested in:

Replacement Campaign Furniture Hardware:

http://www.paxtonhardware.com/Furniture-Corners---Trim/departments/924/

Love the blog! Hope this helps!

vintage antique furniture said...

The dresser is so nice! I like the height of it. And the design of the handle is so nice.

Lauren said...

Wow! Just saw this linked to in a Tobi Fairley post. I'm looking forward to my inaugural bath with semi-gloss paint (defo something vibrant) & this is telling me: full speed ahead!

Building a House and Home said...

Hi,just found you through Blueprint Bliss...Hope it's not too late to comment. I just started working on a project of my own and love what you did here. I'm not sure what type of style the dresser I just bought is, but I think it has big potential...can you tell me if it campaign? It kind of looks like it but doesn't have the same hardware...the picture is at http://ahouseandhome.blogspot.com/2010/08/dresser-distress.html

Thanks in advance!

Cetatzeanul said...

really cool style ! I just love those vintage looking furniture pieces. Would love to put my hands on such furniture at a flea market.

home theater seating said...

Superb furniture. Just love your style ! When do we get to see the rest of your room ?

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Mohsin said...

These type of furniture is very hard and reliable. I think these cupboards are made with the wood of Sunder-ban jungles.

childrens bedding

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Jack said...

Nice work. You have too much experience in this decoration field. After see your projects I determine that you are a specialist in nursery decor and in Rug.

MM said...

I'm wondering if there is a particular brand that is known for campaign furniture?
Thanks! Beautiful work!

Jennifer said...

LOVE it!

b2b said...

Vintage furniture is so cool ! Thanks for sharing such cool designs !

Hatzin said...

What an inspiration! I too love to pick up yard sale finds, or treasures to fix up!

Meredith said...

Much cheaper and larger variety of campaign hardware found here: (I spent 4 hours searching online and I'm glad I went with this site instead of replacing every handle)

http://www.ansaldi.com/Catalog/SearchResults.asp?SearchFlag=1&CategoryId=80

Jessie said...

Hi. Just getting ready to paint a campaign chest and bookshelves. I'm concerned about the hardware removal. There are tiny nails (not screws) attaching all the corner pieces. I'm afraid I'm going to bend all these pieces trying to pull them off. How did you remove and then replace them without harming them and did you have to buy new tiny nails to reattach and if so where? Thank You!!! jessiesymon@yahoo.com

MrsOgg said...

1. No such thing as "unhealthy" obsession with campaign furniture ;-)
2. I am super jealous because I have been looking for a pair of matching 3 drawer dressers to use as large nightstands/clothing storage. It seems like a matching set that size is a white elephant...Sometimes I wonder if I'm being too cheap. I'm curious how much you paid for these??
3. Love, love, love the transformation. Truly brilliant!

home theater seating said...

60 bucks is a steal for that.

Joni said...

I purchased one of these recently. My problem is getting the hardware off without damaging the dresser. Do you have any suggestions?

kdw4jc said...

Thanks for making me smile! My heart skips a beat whenever i see campaign furniture online! Yes, I saw it on Lonny (I inherited that beautiful bamboo mirror from my mom). Love it My parents bought me a campaign furniture bedroom set as a teenager (white with silver hardware) ... I have fond memories of shopping for it. Our daughter loved it enough to make it hers as a teenager ... it has a special place in our hearts & home.

Polystyreneps said...

I really can't believe those two tables are the same one. You really did a great job. It is completely changed and look so much beautiful. I am really afraid to try colouring furniture but I think I can do it:)

Vicki said...

Love your green Campaign dressers! I'm so proud of a find yesterday - a Dixie Campaigner desk for $24 at our Goodwill store! Two drawer pulls are missing so I'm on a mission to find those while trying to decide on a color to paint it! Love your green!

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