I really love Ikea hacks; their furniture is so versatile and it’s great that it usually comes unfinished. It’s the perfect blank slate for creating a customized piece of furniture in whatever style you want! So when Hickory Hardware and Pittsburgh Paints reached out and asked if I wanted to participate in an Ikea hack contest, I jumped at the chance! I turned this plain Ikea Rast dresser into a gorgeous Hollywood Regency nightstand with a few coats of paint, a piece of lace, new hardware, and some wooden trim!
By the way, if you like this Ikea hack, it’s part of contest over on the Hickory Hardware facebook page. Stop by and cast a vote for your favorite project, and the top 3 winners receive a hardware makeover for a room of their choice! Our kitchen could use some new hardware, so vote for this nightstand if you love it!
I’m just so thrilled with how this nightstand turned out; and it’s way more functional than the Ikea Lack table I had been using previously because it has drawers to help hide the mess! I left the Kleenex and moisturizer within easy reach because my allergies are going crazy and I use lotion every night to help (hopefully) minimize stretch marks, but everything else can be hidden away in a drawer to keep it neat looking!
Turning this plain dresser into a cool nightstand wasn’t difficult, but there were a lot of steps. It is one of the “larger” projects that I’ve done, but if you break it down into steps, every single step is totally simple and doable, so I’m including the tutorial here in case you want to try your own Ikea hack!
Rast Ikea Hack: Plain Dresser To Hollywood Regency Nightstand
Here’s what I used for this project:
- Ikea Rast dresser
- Pittsburgh Paint Trim, Door, and Furniture paint (I used Charcoal Grey and Vintage Beige)
- drawer pull hardware (I used these gorgeous pulls from Hickory Hardware)
- oil-based primer
- grey spray paint
- natural bristle paint brushes
- 1-1/4″ wooden trim (to trim all three drawers you need about 20′)
- lace fabric
- painter’s tape
- wood glue
- wax paper
Here is the dresser I started with.
When I paint furniture I like to assemble it first. I find it helps me visualize which areas need to be painted and which ones don’t. It’s especially helpful if I plan to use two colors of paint; that way it’s really obvious which boards show and which ones are inside rather than trying to guess based on the assembly instructions! Also, it’s a little easier to get all the painting done at once, rather than having to paint one side of a board, wait for it to dry, flip it over, and paint the other side. But it does get a little tricky when you have to paint the corners where two boards join, so it’s up to you whether you want to assemble your furniture before or after painting!
Whether or not you assemble your furniture first or not, the first step is to prime the piece. The Trim, Door, and Furniture paint that I used is oil-based, so I used an oil-based primer as well (use water-based primer if you’re using latex paint or any other water-based paint).
Primer helps the paint adhere to the furniture better and gives it a nice smooth base for the paint to sit on. I did two coats of primer and used a medium-grit sandpaper between coats to really make sure the finish was nice and smooth. The paint I used is nice and thick, like a gel, and it self-levels to a nice smooth finish. But if there are brush marks in your primer coat, then you’re going to have brush marks in your paint coat, regardless of how careful you are when painting!
Next I created the trim “frames” for the drawer fronts. I measured the drawer fronts and used my miter saw to cut all of the pieces at a 45 degree angle miter so that they would fit together nicely. Then I covered the drawer fronts in wax paper so that the glue wouldn’t stick to the drawers as I assembled the frames. I added a bit of wood glue to each mitered edge and stuck them together, resting them on the wax paper on top of the drawer front to make sure the joints were nice and flat and that all of the corners were square.
Once the trim pieces were in place, I stretched a few pieces of painter’s tape over the frames to act as clamps. Since these joints are purely decorative and don’t need to bear any weight or tension, I wasn’t too worried about them and figured it would be easier to clamp with tape than with actual clamps. If you clamp this way, just make sure the tape is nice and tight! You can see one piece of tape below that was too loose, so I put another piece right next to it to help support it.
Once the glue on the frames was dry, I pulled off all the tape and removed the wax paper. I primed the frames, and while that was drying I taped off the drawer fronts so I could paint them. I wanted the drawer boxes (the insides) to be a different color from the drawer fronts (the part that shows when the drawers are closed), so I taped around the drawer front to protect the drawer boxes from the charcoal grey color.
Then I gave the drawer fronts and the entire base piece a good solid coat of the charcoal grey Trim, Door, and Furniture paint. This paint is really amazing, by the way! It goes on so smooth, and it’s nice and thick so it doesn’t drip and the brush marks level themselves out. It only took one coat and the drawer fronts and base piece were totally covered! This paint is a brand new product, but you can find it at a Menards near you if you want to try it out!
I also painted the trim frames as soon as the primer was dry.
Next I fancied up the drawer fronts! First I added a few extra holes for the new drawer hardware. Then I used painter’s tape to tape off the edges of the drawer front.
Then I taped a piece of lace over the drawer front to use as a stencil. Make sure that you pull the lace tight as you tape it; you don’t want to stretch it out of shape, but the tighter it is against the wood, the clearer your “stencil” will be!
Next I sprayed a light coat of grey spray paint over the entire drawer front. I highly recommend practicing this step on a test piece of wood a few times first. You don’t want to spray too heavy or you will “drown” the intricate details in the lace in paint. But you also don’t want it too light or it will be splotchy and uneven.
I let the spray paint dry for a little while and then removed the lace and the tape around the borders. How cool looking is that?!
I let the spray paint dry for another few hours, then I taped off the drawer fronts again so that I could paint the drawer boxes. I used the vintage beige paint for the drawer boxes, and again it went on super smoothly and easily!
Once the drawer boxes were done I let them sit overnight to dry. Then the last step was to glue the frames onto the drawer fronts and add the gorgeous new hardware!
I wrapped a few 2×2 scrap boards and a larger 2×6 scrap board in wax paper. Then I added wood glue to the back of the trim frames, placed them on the drawer fronts, and clamped them down between the 2×2’s and the 2×6. The 2×2’s across the top helped to distribute the force of the clamp so that I only had to use three clamps, rather than clamping all the way around all four edges.
Again, since this glued joint wasn’t going to be stressed or bear any weight, I left the clamps on for about half an hour before removing them and finishing up the drawers.
The last step was to add the hardware! I chose these really pretty, ornate, bright silver pulls because I thought they matched the “feel” of the piece. And I was right! How pretty are these drawer pulls on this lace background!
Once the drawer pull hardware was attached, I was done! I slid the drawers back into the base piece and moved the whole dresser upstairs. I replaced my old nightstand with this one, and it’s just perfect! I love the way it looks, it’s a much better height for how tall our bed is, and it has drawers to help hide the clutter!
The colors and lacy “style” fit in really well with the rest of the decor in the bedroom too; it’s just perfect!
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If you liked this project, check out these other simple furniture projects!
Disclosure: I received compensation from Hickory Hardware and Pittsburgh Paints in exchange for my participation in this Ikea hack challenge, and my honest discussion of their products. But I really love the paint I used on this project, and the hardware is just gorgeous! All opinions in this post are 100% my own. I would never write a post about something I didn’t think was useful or interesting for you guys, and Practically Functional will only publish sponsored posts for companies or products I love and believe in! 🙂