Maggie Lu’s Little Dresser

dresser fullAs our eZine readers are likely aware, I recently made a youth-sized dresser for my first grandchild. I got into the project late in the pregnancy, because our large extended family had been searching yard sales and antique stores for an appropriate vintage dresser. We felt certain that the perfect piece would come along at the right price, but in this we were mistaken.

So with just a few weeks to spare, I grabbed paper and pencil and sketched out a three-drawer dresser and got to work in my shop. The piece is 18-inches deep, 32-inches tall and 38-inches wide. I built it from birch plywood and solid birch lumber for the exposed finished areas. The web frames were constructed from hardwood lumber that was lying around my shop.

The drawer boxes are made from 1/2-inch birch plywood with mahogany lipping on the on the exposed edges. As is traditional, the top drawer is shallow and each successive drawer gets deeper. One of the more interesting things I did (from a builder’s perspective) was choose Accuride self-closing under-mount drawer slides. They worked great and close so slowly and smoothly that little fingers will be safe from getting pinched.

The finish is white lacquer applied over several coats of BIN white sealer. The finish should be pretty close to bomb-proof. All in all it was a satisfying and fun project. It is designed and built to withstand the everyday wear and tear that children can inflict on furniture.

After I showed folks here at the office the photos of the dresser, they suggested that we put it into a future issue of the Woodworker’s Journal. I confess to having no ability to be unbiased in this situation, so I will put it to you all — would you like to see a how-to article on how to build this little dresser? Comment below to share your opinion.

Rob Johnstone

dresser top

dresser drawer

dresser side 2

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