Upcycling a Bombay Chest

Hello all today I’m sharing upcycling a Bombay chest.

By the way, it has been busy at Cloches and Lavender.  I have been juggling furniture makeovers for a few months.  I  also have had to order and wait for pieces to add to these projects.  Because of this, they have taking a bit longer to get to the finish line, however, I’m happy with end results.

This post is also long and I really want you to read the steps taken to make this a beauty.  I am hoping this will inspire you to make a transformation.


I have bought this Bombay chest years ago and it needs to have an update.  Also in thus post you will notice the wall color has also been given an update. As a result of the walls being dark and being next to our dining room updating the color is necessary.  You can see the changes I have made to this room with a lighter rug and curtains and it makes a huge difference HERE

As a result of the walls have gone from Benjamin Moore Deep Ochre to Benjamin Moore Stone House.  The change makes a big difference giving me the lighter feel that I have wanted to achieve. My husband painted the foyer in a weekend.

When upcycling the Bombay chest adding layers of paint  took time to achieve a layered look I was wanting.  I began with the color of Versailles in ASCP paint.  I haven’t tried this color and thought I would like it in the foyer.  After the coat was applied and fried I didn’t feel it.  Sounds like a weird statement.  When I work with paint I know after finishing  a piece if it feels right and if I made a  mistake working with the other colors surrounding the room.

This quickly was a realization it was a mistake and I got annoyed because I should have known but instead of stressing I quickly reached for the color I wanted to use from the beginning, ASP Louis Blue.  Lesson, always go with your gut from the beginning.


Photo above gives you a look at this after the blue color was added and you may notice at this point John hasn’t changed the wall color.  The sunlight coming through our large arched transom over the front door bombards this area with sun for pictures.  As I have said I am real in the middle of a project.  I don’t want to take away from work time.

You can see a bit of light sanding was started on this layer.  After this dried for a 24 hour period I reached for my ASCP French Linen paint and gave the piece a wash.


This is after the cabinet was finished getting washed with the final coats of ASCP paint.  The last two washes I did were ASCP Paris Grey letting that dry for twenty four hours and a was of ASCP Country Grey.  You will also notice by this time the walls were repainted Benjamin Moore Stone House.

John moved the piece from the wall for me to add the clear and dark wax.  Unfortunately, after the waxing I was left waiting for appliques to apply to the cabinet to finish her off.

I also was deciding what I wanted to do with the  handles.  Leave them in their original color or change them as well.

So after reading this long post  here she is all dressed, READY?


She’s styled for early fall with dried Limelight hydrangeas from our yard.  Is their anything better then dried hydrangeas, in my opinion, NO.  I decorate with these all fall and later I will add pumpkins.  Too early for the fall girl to be using pumpkins.


This cloche was given to me by a blogger when we moved in this house.  It was such a long build she knew I admired it often and she sent it to me, so sweet.  An antique plateau mirror makes a wonderful addition, look at those feet.


My love of crowns continues placed on a Florentine Italian tray, love the patina and the gilding.  I added a real branch with acorns I preserved from our old home.  I have hundreds of real acorns.  They will be popping up in posts.


You will notice I decided to make the handles gold to add more of a French flair.  Notice the applique?  One of the few pieces added and I love it.


I love these appliques, they add the perfect touch to this chest.  I painted them blue and dried brush with ASCP Country Grey and added gilding wax here and there.  You can see the different shades of paint and sanding here and there, it adds character and gives age in my opinion.


The side view shows the colors coming through too.  You can see Paris Grey, French Linen and Country Grey.  Sanding details show as well.


Above the cabinet will be a French mirror.  John and I are in the process of getting that built which I will make sure to take better before pictures.  I will also be painting it as well and will be better with pictures.  While painting I am totally fixated on the task I lose myself.

One more shot of before and after.



On to more fall decorating and painting.  Hope you are enjoying thinking about projects too.

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33 thoughts on “Upcycling a Bombay Chest

  1. Oh Cindy this is gorgeous. It needs to be in my bedroom. How pretty. Bravo on this one you nailed it. I think this is my new favorite of the furniture that you have reloved with paint. Absolutely gorgeous.

  2. This is such a gorgeous piece!! And, I love how you have styled this beautiful dresser for fall!!
    P.S. I hope you found a way to get back into your IG account. Let me know if there is anything that I can do to help!

  3. You’ve transformed the old cabinet into a really beautiful piece. I love the colour and the appliques. And you really can’t beat hydrangeas!

  4. Cindy, this is just gorgeous! I adore the color, the handles and the appliqués most of all. What a wonderful addition. I wish I were a better painter…In the meantime, I’ll watch you!

  5. Cindy, your chest turned out beautifully. I used to use AS Paint for many years and I could visualize the paint colors just by the names you mentioned. It will make your entry a gorgeous place to welcome company.

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