(If you missed the bedroom furniture posts you can read about the nightstands here, the dresser here, and see how it looks all put together in the room here)
When painting both nightstands and the dresser, I started with a base coat. For these pieces it is the primary color. Sometimes, depending on what I'm going for, the base color is seen very little if not at all.
The paint color is Earthy Gray by Better Homes and Gardens bought at Wal-Mart.
I did prime the nightstands but not the dresser. Once the primer was dry, I rolled the base color on with a sponge roller.
With the base coat dry it now time for the fun part.
I use this to mix paint in and achieve the accent color that I want.
For both nightstands and the dresser, I poured some of the base coat in the cup and added black to it. I didn't measure the black, I just poured some in and added a little water to thin.
With a dry brush, I dipped into the mixtures and then wiped it off as much as possible. You want very little paint on the brush.
With a back and forth motion LIGHTLY brush the paint in the places that you want to highlight. If your furniture piece has "raised" areas, this is where you will want to start.
If you get too much, wipe it off. If you get too little go over it again. Just play with it and have fun. This is where you get to give it the personality you want it to have.
For the dresser, I did something a little different. I had seen a few different people talk about how they made their own chalk paint. So, I gave that a try. I took 2 cups of the base coat and added 1 cup of Plaster of Paris and enough water for it to mix well.
I then rolled it on as usual and once it was dry I rolled on another coat. Then I proceeded with the dry bush technique as outlined above.