Thursday, January 29, 2015

How to Add a Drawer to a Nightstand & Create Faux Mirror Using Mylar

This is the story of a pair of nightstands kindly given to us by my sister's in-laws when we were furniture-less. They are very sturdy. Why get rid of something so functional?

A few years ago, I painted them both white.

There were still two problems: 1) The open space often looked cluttered with stuff I needed to store and, 2) I didn't like the groove handle on the front of the drawer.

It wasn't until a few weeks ago that it hit me--I could add a second drawer to hide the stuff stacked in the open space and give the nightstand a cleaner look.

I removed the drawer and started to examine the structure inside. Instead of removing the existing frame and building a new one, I decided to just add pieces on using my nail gun since I didn't want to rip apart what was already in place so tightly.

I used an extra piece of 1x2 as a guide to help place the piece for the drawer glide.

Next, I needed to build a drawer. I measured the open space and it was 9". Then I considered the 1/4" plywood I would put on the bottom, the 1/4" I'd need for drawer slide clearance, and a 1/4" space on top between the drawers. I decided to make the drawer 8.25" tall. I used the top drawer as a guide for how wide and deep it needed to be.

Then I removed the drawer face from the top drawer. I figured I would use the same material for both drawers and could finally get rid of the grooved handle.

I wound up using MDF scraps for the face, ripped it down to size and reattached it to the drawer using pocket holes.

I attached the drawer glides to the new drawer and put it in place with the top drawer so I could measure how big to make the face front for the new drawer.

I also made sure to drill the knob holes
Yay it opens!

Then came the awesome idea I got after seeing some Glamorized Nightstands from Bachelors Way where she used mirrored contact paper! Gasp! I love mirror furniture, but I hate working with real mirrors. I think my family would be too rough for the contact paper too since it looks like it might scratch easily, so I decided to use Heavy Duty Reflective Mylar (affiliate link) This is the stuff they use in greenhouses to absorb heat. It's a big roll, so it can be used for many other projects too.

I rolled it out and traced the drawer fronts on them. I cut it out minus 1/8" all the way around.

I used a staple gun to secure the corners in place, but it laid really flat and probably would have been fine without it.

Then I nailed on some molding trim that I cut to frame the drawer front and had already pre-painted. Just a note about cutting thin molding like this, it's a pain to cut on the miter saw because it's so powerful that if your cut is too close to the edge it will split and break it into jagged pieces. I cut these pieces with a miter box and hand saw. I found it much easier to be precise with the length this way too.

I carefully taped the open seams so I could caulk it. Then I touched it up with some paint around the edges.

I was a little worried about puncturing the mylar to put the knobs in, but I was very careful and it didn't rip beyond the holes.

I LOVE IT!!! Now I just need to do this to the other nightstand.

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  1. Emily
    You did a great job on your project, and a super tutorial.
    catching you!

  2. What a great job! I'm so impressed. I agree that when things aren't in a drawer or behind a door or some other cover, the stuff on the shelves looks messy. It would have been a shame to toss those nightstands. They look like they were made with good wood.

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  4. très beau , j'aime beaucoup , merci