7 Easy Ways to Make Your Dresser Top Look Expensive

Dresser top with vase and books

Cathie Hong Interiors

For most of us, a dresser is a bedroom essential, whether it’s a simple three-drawer style or a piece that’s large enough to hold all of your go-to clothing items and more. However, it’s all too easy for dresser tops to become cluttered with jewelry, perfume bottles, and loose change or serve as a dumping ground for mail, receipts, and whatever else has been buried at the bottom of your purse.

It’s time to say goodbye to treating your dresser top like a catchall for anything and everything and turn it into a space that truly shines and enhances your bedroom. We turned to designers who shared their tips on how to make a dresser top look chic and expensive.

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Display a Tray

Classic white dresser with small feminine trinkets.

Design: Eugenia Jesberg; Photo: Eric Rorer

“Trays are a great way to keep things organized and tidy on your dresser,” designer Eugenia Jesberg says. Whether you use it to keep baubles organized or place a few favorite fragrances on top, it’s up to you.

Jesberg also suggests adding framed photos to a dresser top, noting that touches like these add personality.

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Add Lighting

Bedside dresser with plant and sconce.

Design: Mindy Gayer; Photo: Lane Dittoe

“A pair of lamps will add height to a dresser and give the illusion of a larger space,” designer Marissa Nelums says. In general, though, she notes that less is more.

“When styling your dresser, try to add small purposeful elements,” Nelums explains. “An over-styled dresser can distract you from the beauty of its bones.”

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Think in Threes

Dresser top with vase and books

Cathie Hong Interiors

A thoughtfully arranged collection will look nice and luxe. “Groupings of three are pleasing to the eye, but don’t feel like each collection needs to be the same size or shape,” Whitney Riter Gelinas of Wit Interiors notes. “Asymmetry helps to create a look that feels both elevated and casual at the same time. Mix and match height and textures to create interest.”

Possible items to group in threes include vases, candles, and once again, perfume bottles.

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Go Natural

Traditional dresser with plant and photos on top.

Design: Suzan Wemlinger; Photo: Photographic Design

“Bring in an organic element,” Gelinas advises. “A branch or even a faux floral can help to soften your dresser top and bring the outdoors in.” Whether you choose to go foraging in your own backyard or order something on the internet is up to you.

Notes Suzan Wemlinger, “There are so many realistic looking faux florals out there now that don't cost an arm and a leg—put them in a clear vase or vessel with water; they will look real and you don't need to worry about wilting or watering.”

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Get Personal

Simple white dresser with plants on top.

Design: Melanie Love; Photo: Vivian Johnson

“Bedroom dressers provide an opportunity to create visual interest while also being functional,” designer Melanie Love says. Why not showcase some sentimental items in the process? “Including vintage accessories or items purchased while traveling adds a personal touch,” Love says. Sculptural objects, glassware, or woven baskets are all fair game.

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DIY an Art Piece

Cozy banquette next to white dresser.

Design: Suzan Wemlinger; Photo: Photographic Design

Don’t settle for mass-produced artwork when you can easily create something special that will make your dresser top shine. Wemlinger suggests painting a picture frame in a favorite hue to coordinate with your space.

“Put a funky square of fabric remnant or a cool wallpaper sample in the frame, then place it either on the dresser or hang it above,” she says.

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Make Alterations

Dresser with small decor items on it.

Pure Salt Interiros

If you wish, you can even go so far as to transform your physical dresser to better reflect your aesthetic.

“Adding removable wallpaper to a dresser top can be a very quick and easy way to enhance the look of your dresser,” Amber Dunford, the lead stylist at Overstock.com explains. “Opt for wallpaper in more luxe finishes like faux marble, concrete, or terrazzo to help elevate the design. If you want to achieve an even more believable look, use the wallpaper to cover a slab of wood the same size as your dresser top and then adhere it to give the look of an actual marble top.”