Monday, September 17, 2012

From dresser to Tool Cabinet

Its no secret that I love tools of any kind, whether it being kitchen tools or wood shop tools.  What I also love is refurbishing.  I like to turn unwanted items into something.  A project I have been working on is this old dresser.  I've always disliked this dresser and have even tried to sell it at a garage sale.  Despite being able to sell EVERY other piece of furniture that I placed on my lawn, this piece just sat there.  I had great plans for it, as I spoke about working on it here and  here, but simply never got around to it.

Over a year later, with a beautiful weekend, I was able to turn that dresser into my very own tool cabinet on wheels.  Its nearly done and I am SUPER excited about that.

Here's our journey.  A lot of prep work to get it looking a little, well, more plain.  I removed the curvy front legs.  It was a little ornate for my tool chest if I do say so myself.


That left me with no sturdy bottom for my wheels.

I added a 2x4 between the sides in the front and back of the dresser to make the bottom nice, flat and level.

It's a great place to attach my wheels I already had on hand.

Total cost so far is zilch.  I already had both the wood and wheels. 

Now, its time to beautify the thing.  I scraped off the paint on the sides of the dresser and sanded it down.  The paint on the drawers didn't come off so easily so I sanded them with my sander instead of scraping them off entirely.

I applied a de-glosser to the dresser to get rid of any oil or glossy finish to the dresser.  Since it was originally stained, I wanted to be sure that my coat of paint would last by removing any surface grease.  I knew I definitely wanted to change the hardware so I filled in all existing holes with wood putty.

In hindsight, now would also be the perfect opportunity to pre-drill holes for your handles.  Of course, I didn't think of that, but all is not lost.  It is nicer to not have to worry about messing up your finish though.

In the midst of it, I removed the curvy molding underneath the lip of the dresser and sanded the surface down.  So here is what it looked like after all of that.

Its still pretty rough looking.  Next, I applied two coats of primer which makes it look a tad bit better now.

For the final finish, I used this foam roller since I was told it would give it a smoother finish.  In my opinion, my regular small roller did the same job.  Had I known that, I could have saved myself the $4.87.  Live and learn. 

What also could have saved me time was not having to prime.  My go to paint, the Olympic no-VOC paint didn't have the color I wanted and they couldn't match it supposedly because the can didn't have enough room to add the accent colors.  I had to go with this instead which had primer already in it.

I wasn't liking the fact that I spent time priming my dresser for nothing.  I also wasn't loving the no odor I was used to from Olympic or the price difference, but what I did love was the color.  I'll gladly pay extra for it.

When I bought the spray paint I used for my yellow tray in this post, I saw this teal color and loved it.  I didn't want to buy several cans of spray paint for this dresser so I was intended to color match it, but low and behold, valspar had it in their paint department.  It's called exotic sea.

It took a coat of paint with some light touch ups.  I only used a fourth of a quart of paint.

What's next after the paint dried?  Now comes the hardware.

I love the Lansa cabinet handles from Ikea so I looked online to see if there were any available.  There were 19 available.  I was super happy so I made my trip out there to find there were only 2 packs and I needed 3.  There were 100's of all the other sizes I didn't need.  I'm talking boxes and boxes of 100's of the 9 inch, the 23 inch, the 33 inch, but there were only 2 of the 17 inch I needed.  I was so disappointed.  I searched every inch of that store and despite their website still indicating there are 19, I was able to only come home with 4 out of the 6 handles that I needed.

What's a girl to do?  I'll have to wait until they have more in stock.  I guess that is a popular size?  I debated whether or not I should postpone this post, but in this day in age of great technology, I figured, you can use your imagination on what it would look like with 6 handles or I can use some photo shopping and show you what it will look like when I get my hands on another 2 handles.

I love love how it turned out.  Aside from the 2 missing handles, I plan on lining the drawers, adding another handle to the side so that I can pull the tool cabinet around the garage a little easier.  I also want to make drawer dividers for all the little tools that I have.  I can't wait.  

I hadn't been in my garage building anything lately because of the heat and what I realized this past weekend as saw dust sprinkled everywhere, I miss it.  When I'm out in my garage, I will be doing my happy dance (secretively since I don't want any of my neighbors thinking I'm crazier than I already am), that I have something pretty to pull my tools out of!

The total cost run down is $10.47 for my quart of paint (I had a 20% off coupon),  $26.97 (for 6 handles), and $4.87 for the roller (could have done without).  That's $42.31 for this make-over.  That's not too shabby for my tool cabinet on wheels if I do say so myself.  I'll be wheel-ing with excitement for sometime with this addition to my garage.


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