I am so excited to finally be done with this dresser! This last part was my favorite because I could finally see it coming together. I usually just reuse the old hardware when I refinish a piece of furniture, but I was totally not digging the fake yellow gold stuff that came with this one so I ordered these vintage brass knobs and pulls from Etsy instead. They totaled almost $50, twice as much as I spent on the dresser itself, but I loved the idea of navy and antiqued brass together so I splurged.
The only problem was that the holes for the drawer pulls were spaced just a little bit wider than the old ones, so I had to go outside of my comfort zone and drill new ones. First I filled all the old holes with wood filler and let it dry overnight before sanding it down, then I got ready to mark and measure my holes.
The drawers were each 8.25 inches high. I noticed that the old holes were placed a bit higher than the center of the drawer, so I decided to make things easy on myself and use a piece of paper folded lengthwise as my guide. This put my holes just a little bit below the old ones, but still north of center.
I just lined up the edge of the paper with the bottom of the drawer and traced the top edge with a sharpie, leaving me a perfectly straight line.
Then, I measured and marked where the holes should be placed along that line by finding the center and marking 1.5″ in either direction (making my holes 3″ apart). I used one of the drawer pulls to check to make sure it looked about right.
With everything marked, all I had to do was drill the holes. This part was actually not so simple, though. At first I started out using the smallest bit that I thought would work, but it was too tight for me to be able to get the screw in without an awful lot of effort. So I moved up a size. The slightly larger hole was easier to work with, but I found it rather unforgiving if my hole was even a teensy bit misplaced. So I moved up again, and the third bit was perfect. I could get the screw in easily, it gave a little wiggle room to account for errors, and I still was able to get a nice tight fit for my handles. I’m so glad I decided to test the hardware as I went. I would have been super annoyed to realize my holes weren’t working if I’d already painted.
With that step complete, all I had to do was prime and paint the drawer faces! I did my back a favor and went ahead and popped them in the dresser for this stage. I just pulled them out a little and kept them staggered so I could get the outside edges. After it dried for a few hours Nick put on the new hardware for me. It was his biggest contribution to this project since carrying the dresser into our house all by himself the day we brought it home.
Ta da! It’s finally complete!
Can’t wait to fill these drawers with teeny tiny necessities!
A downside to working with glossier paint: it shows everything. There are little kitty pawprints all over the top. I’m not about to add this to my list of places the cats are banished from, though. They love that window and it’s a full time job already just keeping them off the kitchen counters and dining table.
If you’d like to recap the ridiculous amount of work I put into this dresser you can review the whole saga here, here, here, and here. But I’d rather make a list of new things I tried in the course of this project: visiting St. Helena parish, patching damaged veneer, painting the inside of the dresser and drawers, using a roller, using primer, using semi-gloss paint, filling old holes, drilling new ones…I have never spent so many hours working on a piece of furniture in my life! And boy am I glad to be done. Now I can finally move on to some smaller, more manageable projects, like adding a cushion to the plywood seat of the rocking chair I picked up for $15, DIYing a mobile, and whipping up a crib skirt for some concealed storage. So exciting!