Want to turn a big empty wall into storage and display space, but don't have the money to spend on big-ticket shelving? Check out this ingenious bit of upcycling. Simply gather old discarded drawers from recycling centres, garage sales or off the nature strip during local council clean-ups. Nip into the hardware store for screws, grab your drill, some plywood and a tape measure, and get started.Here's how it's done
- Measure your wall space to calculate the desired size of your finished unit.
- Arrange your drawers on the floor in a configuration that suits your space. Put the larger drawers on the bottom – this will increase stability and provide an attractive sense of proportion. Number the drawers on the back so you remember the order later. Remove handles, leaving a few on the topmost drawers, if you like.
- Use a jigsaw to cut off any overhanging edges that prevent drawers from sitting flush with each other.
- Fill and sand any holes, then paint or varnish the drawers. This is entirely optional, depending on the effect you’re after.
- Starting from the bottom, screw drawers together with wood screws that suit the thickness of the wood – here, a combination of 25, 30 and 35mm screws were used. Use a drill to make a pilot hole in the first drawer, then screw through into the second.
- Cut and attach plywood to the back of the two top corner drawers to fill the void in the back so they sit flush with the wall. Stand your unit against the wall and, using the appropriate wall fasteners for your wall, fix the two top drawers to the wall. If your wall is plasterboard, be sure to drill into the studs for extra support. Do not be tempted to skip this step, as otherwise the unit may topple.
- Decorate the unit to your heart’s content!
Old solid timber drawers, East Cessnock Recycling Centre, (02) 4991 1115 and NES Bargains and Discounts, (02) 9518 1737. Wrapping paper in blue, Paper2, www.paper2.com.au Dulux Wash & Wear 101 Advanced Low Sheen acrylic in Brigadier Blue, Dulux, 13 25 25 or www.dulux.com.au Multi-use bugle-headed 30mm wood screws, Bunnings Warehouse, www.bunnings.com.au