This antique sewing drawer set was not the project I planned on sharing with you. Mother Nature wouldn’t let me finish the easy project I wanted to share. Maybe next week for that one.
Antique Sewing Drawer Set Makeover
Antique Sewing Drawers
I have two racks, but only 1 set of drawers. Did you notice one is missing a knob? The frame is in good shape, but the antique drawers need to be painted.
So many years ago, I made a table out of 2 sets of sewing drawers.
My first step was to remove the hardware on the bottom and the knob from the front of the drawer.
Not shown: I sanded the drawers inside and out. That made quite the mess! Because I was working in the basement shop, I didn’t want to use my leaf blower.
Clean Well After Sanding
How about a quick splash with the garden hose to remove all that debris? Water and wood aren’t on friendly terms, but a quick cleaning won’t hurt the antique sewing drawer set.
It’s very important to allow the wood to dry thoroughly. However, while the wood is wet, it’s a good indication of what it would look like if it was sealed. So, this is when I decided to leave the sewing drawer frame unpainted.
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Paint Sewing Drawers
I prefer to apply several light coats of any kind of chalky paint, including my own diy chalky paint primer. To get the best sheen, I like to lightly sand between coats. This image is after applying and sanding the first coat.
Cut Top for Set of Sewing Drawers
In order to “close” up the top of the antique sewing drawer set, I chose a thin piece of plywood from my scrap pile. Because I didn’t want the top to look boxy, I cut the corners off on the miter saw.
Using a sanding sponge, I rounded of the sharp edges of each corner. Can you see the difference in the top and bottom corners?
I took this opportunity to test the top on the antique sewing drawer set. In addition, I checked to see if the knobs I wanted to use would actually fit.
Clean Up Excess Paint
To ensure that the drawers would glide in out out of the frame easily, I used a putty knife and sand paper to remove the leftover paint from the top and bottom of both sewing drawers.
This is before and after of the bottom of the two drawers.
And . . . the top of the sewing drawers.
Add Wipe-On Poly to Sewing Drawer Frame
To enhance the beauty of the wood of the antique sewing drawer set frame, I opted to use wipe-on poly. This was applied with a small rag.
The wipe-on poly really helped the frame’s appearance, don’t you think?
I also sealed the inside and the top of the drawers. Due to the age of the antique sewing drawer set, I had a hard time securing the screws for the knobs. A small washer may have worked, but I improvised using a small piece of wood drilled out with a countersink bit. Voila! Worked perfectly for now.
Makeover Sewing Drawer Set
I staged the drawer set over in the Sugar Shack atop a gray chest of drawers. The top hasn't been attached to the antique sewing drawer set. I like to see how things look in pictures first. The easiest way to attach it is with Gorilla Wood Glue, but that would definitely make it permanent. What if the person who buys it wants to remove it for some reason? What would you do?
Gail Wilson is the author and mastermind behind My Repurposed Life. She is obsessed with finding potential in unexpected places and believes that with a little hard work and imagination, any old thing can be made useful again, including herself!
Gail reinvented herself during a midlife crisis and has found purpose again. She hopes you will find new ideas for old things and pick up a few tools along the way.