Craft project – Fira drawer unit

I recently came across an ad in Craigslist for a couple of Fira mini-chests of drawers that someone was selling. I didn’t know what a Fira was so when I did a Google search I discovered two interesting things: one, crafters and artists love these boxes, making them a popular item to “hack” and make their own; and two, these little chests have been discontinued by Ikea.

Here are a few ideas I found of how people have decorated them.

So I got them and decided I would have a go at it, doing a little decoupage, and use them for organizing my sewing materials. I finished the first chest this past weekend. Here’s how it turned out.

It was more work than I expected, mostly because the wood is plain birch and I wanted to put a finish on it. Here’s what the box looked like just assembled. It’s very pale.

First I sanded down the edges just a bit and then painted everything with a couple of coats of varnish. I wanted to give it a richer glow. Then I found pictures I wanted to cover the drawers with and printed them out. I found all the images on Flikr.

I cut out the pictures using an exacto knife and the drawer top as a template.

I glued on the pictures with plain Elmer’s glue and a brush. I probably should have used a stronger glue but I didn’t have anything on hand and figured it would stay once I painted a coat of varnish over the paper. I used a combination of Mod Podge and then a clear satin varnish to take away any feeling of tackiness.

Everything dried very quickly and I filled it up with my supplies right away.

This is the first chest. I have a second, 3-drawer unit that will be next. I’m not sure what I’m going to do with it, so I’ll wait a bit until an idea comes.

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