Mid-Century-esque Ikea Rast Hack

Last week I spent a few nights doing another, slightly bigger Ikea “hack”. I have to put that in quotations because it’s not so much a hack as it is a facelift, but everyone calls them hacks, so hey.

In my mind, the Rast has to be the most popular Ikea hack because you see them a lot. At £20 per dresser, it’s a very affordable option for bedside tables, and it offers up a little more clothes storage, which I desperately need. I tried so hard to find vintage mid-century tables in our price range, but it’s a no-go, so I caved in and decided to hack the Rast.

The Rast is made of solid pine wood, which I love. It’s much more sturdy than cheap Argos options, which are ugly and poor quality. Because the pine is light and untreated, it’s a perfect blank canvas for however you want to alter it. I agonised for a while about whether to paint the outside black with wood drawers, or the reverse, and finally decided on what you see here. I’m glad I did!

Being that I was going for a mid-century style, I bought a teak stain for the outside and glossy black paint for the drawers. The teak stain was a stain/varnish combination and I didn’t have any trouble with it. It dried fairly quickly, and if all I was doing was staining, the drawers would have been ready to use after a couple of hours. Unfortunately, the black paint was very slow to dry, so that dragged out my process by two days.

With the teak stain, I only did two coats because I didn’t want the wood to be too dark and lose the contrasting effect with the black. I decided to only do one coat with the black paint because I really liked seeing the woodgrain on the drawers, and they were fully covered with the one coat.

If you notice on the product shot of the Rast, it comes with holes drilled for knobs on the drawers. I filled those before painting, and instead did leather pulls at the top of each drawer. I had some leather left over from my Expedit makeover and it was almost the exact same shade as the teak stain, so I thought it would help tie the drawers in with the wood sides nicely.

I got the handle idea from a hack that Sugar and Cloth recently did on a different dresser, but I made some edits. I made my handles quite a bit bigger to match the size of my drawers. It keeps a nice proportion and ensures that they’ll do a good job of what they’re meant to do: open the drawers. I also found that it helped to glue the ends of the leather strip together, and then glue that down to the drawer before nailing it in. This way, as you open and close the drawer over time, you wont bump/pull off the handle.

I’m really pleased with how it turned out. I made two for the bedroom, and it’s really made a difference to the room. I think I’ll even eventually do a hack on the Tarva to have a matching set!



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