Wednesday 13 May 2015

Super simple Ikea Rast hack

 I love Ikea.

Like really love it.

Like as in have its functional, reasonably priced babies love it.

During the two years when we were trying to buy a house I spent a lot of time thinking about how I wanted our house to look, and what I wanted to fill it with. Unfortunately we weren't going to have the budget to just buy whatever we wanted straight off, we were going to have to be creative! We were going to have to find pieces that were inexpensive, but still stylish and decent quality, and to my mind you can't really beat Ikea for that.

So I had spent quite a lot of time on the Ikea site, and also on pinterest, checking out what was available and what could be done with it....and one thing that kept cropping up was the humble Rast dresser and the many things that could be done to it to jazz it up, from basic painting and staining to more adventurous ideas like adding mirror or overlays.

The Rast is solid raw pine and is priced at €25.....yes €25!! That's a fantastic price for solid wood furniture, and the fact that it's unfinished is the biggest selling point for me as it leaves you with unlimited possibilities as to what you can do with it, bedside table, hall table, dining room sideboard, the list is endless.

What we really needed was extra clothes storage in our bedroom, so we decided to buy three Rasts to go along the big blank wall beside the bed, where there was a slight alcove that they would fit into perfectly. 

As the room was painted a dark grey all over I decided to stick to bright white and gold as the colours for the furniture, curtains and bedding to stop the space feeling too dark. With that in mind I wanted to paint the dressers glossy white, with gold cup pull handles and gold brackets on the corners of the drawers.

So I removed the original handles (and kept them, cos you never know...) and filled the holes with wood filler, let it dry and then sanded it flush with the wood.

I then painted everything with one thick coat of this....

...which was a big mistake! It stank to high heaven, took 3 days to dry and had a really disappointing finish. Lesson learned, if something seems too good to be true, it probably is. There really is no way to cut corners if you want a good paint finish. If I was to do it again (and I will, cos I want two of these together in our entryway) I'd give them a serious sanding first, coat them with this primer.......

.....and then do 2-3 thin coats of a water based white gloss to finish them off, giving another light sanding with very fine sandpaper just before the last coat to make sure to end up with a really glossy finish. In the long run I know it'd give a much better result.

When the paint finally dried took these cup pulls (got them on ebay from China, they were around €20 for 12 of them)

 ...and these corner brackets

Bulk Hardware 50mm/ 2-inch Flat Corner Repair Brackets Zinc Plated (Pack of 15)

(2 inch flat corner right angle bracket/brace-again I got them on ebay as it was much cheaper, around €10 for 50 of them) and sprayed them with my trusty rustoleum bright gold spray paint, and once they were dry Gavin attached them.

side note-I recently tried out the plastikote on the right as it was only €3 a can in Woodies, but I won't be buying it again. The colour was much brassier than the rustoleum and not nearly as nice, and the nozzle kept getting clogged as I used it.

And here you have them!

Despite the poor paint finish I really love them, and they currently store all of Gavins clothes so they're really functional. Despite the mistakes I made it was a relatively simple project and I'd expect that the next time I do this it would only take a few hours, total.

Ever attempted an Ikea hack? I'd love to hear about it in the comments ;)


Sincerely, Paula