I LOVE an Ikea hack. One of my favourite features about Ikea is how customisable their products are. The RAST chest of drawers is part of a basic range Ikea have of plain pine furniture, which I gather they have designed specifically with the intention of wanting their customers to paint and customise the items, creating their own Ikea hack.
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I’ve been on the lookout for black bedside tables for a while now, but I specifically wanted oversized tables that were more like small chests of drawers rather than your standard small nightstand. We don’t have a huge bedroom, but we also don’t have much furniture it in at all, so I needed the bedside tables to be big enough to make a statement and fill up some space. The problem was, I couldn’t find anything I liked that wasn’t at least £150 per bedside table, and that was beyond what I was willing to spend. So, I took to browsing Ikea and that’s when I spotted the RAST, decided to get creative and do a little bit of an upcycle.
Here is a step by step guide to how I created these DIY RAST bedside tables
First up, I purchased 2 of the Ikea RAST drawers, which are only £25 each - bargain!
You will also need the following items which I have linked for you, although other brands are available too:
Plastic dust sheet (spray paint goes EVERYWHERE)
I opted to use the Rustoleum black furniture spray paint in a satin finish. You don’t have to use spray paint, you could use a furniture paint and I did consider it, however I feel like you get a neater coverage with spray as you don’t get the paint or roller lines. It’s also much quicker spraying! However, it is worth pointing out that it definitely is not the cheapest option. I went through 4 cans of the black spray paint creating these bedsides, and at £11 a can, I definitely could have saved money if I had used traditional paint.
If you plan to add new handles to your RAST bedside like I did which are in a different position to the original handles, then the first thing you need to do is fill the original holes in the drawer fronts. Simple Polyfila will be fine for this. Allow it to dry and then use a fine grain sand paper to smooth it out. Make sure you only sand in the direction of the wood grain, otherwise you’ll end up with scratch marks.
Lay out all the Rast pieces of wood that need spraying on the dust sheet. I strongly advise you only do this outside! You need to make sure you have the top, side panels, drawer fronts, and the bottom connecting piece. Evenly space them out so you can reach all of the edges on each piece. I did one RAST set at a time as I was limited for space.
Apply the first coat of spray paint to your bedsides. Make sure to spray in an even and consistent way, starting at one end of the wood and slowly moving along until you have an even coverage. Ensure you remember to do all of the sides too. Don’t worry if it doesn’t look perfect, it will need another 1 or 2 coats after this. Apply the first coat to all the RAST pieces, and allow to dry following the timings given by the paint brand you are using.
I couldn’t find any gold handles I liked, so I bought some chrome ones and decided to carry on with my spray paint frenzy and spray those too! While you’re waiting for the paint to dry on the drawers, spray your first coat of paint onto the handles. This is most easily done by standing them up as they would be when attached, so you can ensure you cover all visible parts. Make sure you spray well away from your drawers!! The wind will carry the paint and the different colour will land on your drawers… I learnt this the hard way and ended up with gold specks on my first coat of black paint!
Apply the next layers of black paint onto your drawers. After the second coat was fully dry, I used 240 grit sand paper to give a really gentle sand across all of the pieces. I highly recommend you do this before you spray your final coat as it creates a much nicer finish and removes any small lumps and bumps. Apply the final coat of paint to all of the pieces.
I only sprayed the sides that would be visible when the bedside tables were put together. If you have enough paint or you want to, you can spray the back of all of the pieces too so all of the inner sections are completely black. This would create the ultimate finish. I took the path of least resistance though (especially as I’d gone through so much paint just for the front panels) and just did the sections you could see.
I bought a clear lacquer to put on the bedside tables because I wanted to make sure the wood and paint were protected from the everyday items you have on a bedside, for example a glass of water would ruin the paint if spilled and lamps might scratch it. I applied one coat of clear lacquer to the top panel only. I did originally intend on lacquering the whole thing, however it gave a slightly less perfect finish than the black paint did, and I didn’t want to risk ruining the drawer fronts which would be extremely visible.
Allow everything to fully dry for 24 hours to ensure the paint and lacquer are hard. You then need to create new holes for the handles. To do this, I worked from the back of the drawers. Draw a line between the original existing holes, as this will ensure you position the new holes right in the centre of the drawers, and not end up with them too high or low. Use a drill to create the new holes, ensuring you use a drill bit that is the correct thickness for the screws provided with your new chosen handles. Neaten up the holes if necessary by giving them a gentle sand. Wipe off any dust with a lightly damp cloth to ensure it doesn’t stay stuck to your neat black fronts.
Assemble the bedside tables exactly as instructed in the Ikea manual, attaching your own handles instead, place in your bedroom and style!
How easy was that that!? Such a simple but effective hack to epicycle the RAST chest of drawers. These probably cost me about £130 in total, but a big chunk of that was on black paint, gold paint and the lacquer. You could definitely do it for cheaper if you choose a tin of paint rather than spray, and find handles you don’t need to spray paint too.
I hope you find that useful, I would absolutely love to see your own Ikea RAST hack upcycle if you try it, tag me on instagram @cloud_interiors so I can see!
If you enjoyed this DIY bedside table blog, why don’t you have a read of some of my other DIY blogs, such as my DIY Board and batten panelling post.