Wicker Drawer Makeover

I finally finished a project today that I've been doing for a few days now. I've had this wicker drawer set for over a year now, and while I loved how dark it was when I first bought it, it doesn't really fit the light and airy vibe I'm going for in the office.

Plus, after moving a few times, and a year's worth of use, it started to show a bit of wear and tear. Some cup rings here, some chunks missing there....

This thing needed some love. I considered just donating it or trashing it a few times, because for a while after we moved it this last time, I thought it wasn't standing straight, and who wants to mess with all those little wicker shavings that come off every single time you pull a drawer out?

Well I moved it across the room, and all of a sudden, it wasn't leaning to the left anymore. Turns out the flooring right near my office door just isn't even. So I tried to come up with a solution for the drawers shaving problem. I thought about wood for underneath (this set is pretty open, there isn't any support under each drawer, just edges that hold it up), but figured that would be a little too pricey for something I wasn't sure I wanted to keep anyways. Then I remembered the felt rectangles we used to sell at the fabric shop I worked at.

I went to Walmart and bought a panel for each drawer. At a whopping $0.23 a piece, I figured it had to be worth a try. I'd just hot glue them onto the bottom of each drawer to create a barrier between the wood strips the drawer drags across, and we'd be all set.

This is what the bottom of each drawer looked like before the felt. Damaged, torn, and just generally sad...

And this is what the end table I was using for this part of this project looked like after one drawer. Covered in shavings that needed to be banished for good.

I fired up the glue gun, and got to work. Super simple: I put one long line of glue towards the front of the bottom of the drawer, attached the felt, and then applied glue to the middle of the drawer (after a few drawers I found doing about five total lines of glue helped. One on each end, three in the middle, spaced evenly apart, going the width of the drawer), and then one final line of glue towards the back of the drawer. This worked perfectly!

There's a small part of each drawer that didn't quite get covered by the felt piece, but it is so much better than the whole bottom sprinkling flecks of wood everywhere every time you open a drawer. It slides a lot smoother, doesn't spit wood bits, and it'll ultimately make these drawers more durable (at least for the time being- we'll have to see how well the felt holds up).

Now for the painting. First, Chelsea and I painted the frame with some leftover white paint I had from the hobby cabinet. It stuck well, but it streaked terribly, and just generally looked bad. So I went out and bought some spray paint (quickly becoming a large part of my craft supply hoard) in heirloom white. Not quite white, not quite cream, but could hide some dust for a least a little bit (who else hates dusting??).

I draped the bedroom in a giant dropcloth (also from Walmart), and sprayed away. I also used the cardboard backing from some posters I had bought in the past as a stabilizer over the carpet. 

And then quickly made Aaron gag and choke on the air. Tip of the day: when spray painting inside, open some windows, turn on a fan, and if you have one available, turn your window fan on high to suck some of the fumes and paint particles out of the air. This will help you breathe, the room to air out quickly, and for any extra paint particles to get out and away from anything you couldn't quite cover.

This paint took a lot longer than expected to dry. About 2 hours, to be exact. By this time, it was about 2 am, and I was ready for bed. I moved shop into the office, and crashed for the night.

After another coat of spray paint, this frame finally was done. This coat didn't take nearly as long to dry (wonder what that's about...sun?), and it finished it off perfectly. I popped the drawers back in, plopped it down in front of a door, added some crap on top, and took these pictures so you could see the final product.

Not a huge process, but such a nice result. It feels nice and bright, but also natural thanks to the wicker. I can't wait until I have room in the office to enjoy it! I have yet another project drying in there right now, so there's still plastic everywhere.

Project mode is in full swing so be prepared!


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