Introduction: DIY Anthropologie-inspired Bedside Tables

Picture of DIY Anthropologie-inspired Bedside Tables

These bedside tables were inspired by the Curator Table by Anthropologie, which is no longer on their site, but you can see a picture here. It was selling for more than $900(CAD), and we were able to make them for less than $100 each.
I have no woodworking experience, which probably shows, but it means that ANYONE can make this!
The finished product is 22" high and 14" wide.

Materials (for one table) with approximate pricing:
2 Fira mini chests with 3* drawers from Ikea: $15 (seen here)
4 123 Wooden legs from hardware store like Home Depot: $5 each
4 Metal top plate (to attach legs to chest) from Home Depot: $2 each
Decorative trim, assorted styles, 6-82 long: approx. $25
Paint: $20
6 Knobs (ours were vintage, but check hardware store): $2.50 each
Wood glue, paint brushes, hardwood for base: $15
One piece of hardwood cut to the size of the bottom of the chest (which is Width: 14 "
Depth: 10 1/4 ")

You will also need (but may already have):
Small nails
Sandpaper
Hacksaw (we have a small hacksaw that cost $5)

*About the Fira chests: I bought the 5-drawer version because it was the only one available at our Ikea. I was actually looking for the 3-drawer one which would be a bit easier to work with. I decided to glue the three little drawers together - now the top drawer has built-in dividers.

Step 1: Put Together the Fira Chest

Picture of Put Together the Fira Chest

Put together the fira mini chests as per Ikea's lovely instructions.

(The 5 drawer version of the Fira chest is shown, which is what I used)

Step 2: Attach the Legs

Picture of Attach the Legs

You can't just screw the legs into the chest because then, of course, the bottom drawer wouldn't open. So get a piece of hardwood cut to the size of the fira chest, or just a smidge smaller. A friendly worker at Home Depot cut ours. Use generous amounts of wood glue to adhere the wood to the bottom of the chest, then hammer small nails along the edge. Screw the metal plates into the wood at the four corners.
Now you can screw the legs in (and off should you need to move it).

Step 3: Glue Top Three Drawers Into One

Picture of Glue Top Three Drawers Into One

**This only applies if you have the 5 drawer version. If you have the 3 drawer Fira, skip this step**

Attach the three top drawers together with the wood glue and clamp them. I used medium sized binder clips and they worked wonderfully. Our Elmers wood glue said to clamp for 1 hour and let sit for 24 hours. I didn't have the patience so I set them aside, clamped, for a couple of hours while I did the other things. They were really strong by the time I was ready to use them.

Step 4: Decorate With Trim

Picture of Decorate With Trim

Cut all the trim to the size of the chest (not the drawers - so that they will go right to the edge) with a hacksaw. This didn't take as long as I thought it would. Most trim was thin enough that it just took a couple seconds to saw and then snap them apart. Don't worry about rough edges, you can sand them later.
I laid the pieces out on the floor in the pattern I wanted (the same for both tables).

Some things to keep in mind:
I didn’t want the thin edges of the chest to show much so I let just a tiny bit of trim stick down below each drawer.
Use one of the wider trims as the top layer on each drawer so the little cut out is completely covered.
You need to leave a space between the trim on each drawer to make it easier to attach the knobs later.

Now start gluing the trim to the drawers. Hold each strip down for a minute or so. You can clamp the top trim with a couple of binder clips.
You can attach the trim with little nails but I don’t recommend it - the wood splits very easily.

Step 5: Trim the Bottom Edge, Let Sit & Sand

Picture of Trim the Bottom Edge, Let Sit & Sand

You will want to cover up the ugly plywood and metal plates on the bottom with trim.

Now let it all sit for at least a couple of hours to let the glue dry.

Sand all the edges well.

Step 6: Paint & Attach Knobs

Picture of Paint & Attach Knobs

You can prime and then paint. Or buy a paint that is primer and paint in one and do two thin coats (this kind of paint is for bathrooms I think but a girl at Home Depot recommended it).
Do not paint the sides of the drawers or the inside of the chest because it's already a snug fit without layers of paint.
I used a color called "West Coast Gray".
Let it dry overnight.

Attach the knobs:
Screw them in where you left a space between trims on each drawer.

Step 7: You're Done!

Picture of You're Done!

Now you have bedside tables!

Comments

Tristy94 (author)2015-12-19

Awesome post! Thanks!!!

marydecorator (author)2014-03-27

Very inspiring. I can't believe you came up with this. What's your secret? :D

LibbyLu (author)2012-03-10

That is such a great little table and you've inspired me in so many ways!! Thanks for posting!

Funky Junkers (author)2012-02-22

very nice indeed...will definately be making some of these:)

dr-awkward (author)2011-10-19

Yeah super nice. I think Ill make these with my next two days off. They're terrific. Thanks.

builddoll (author)2011-06-26

Looks nice!! But to be sure it is properly sealed you should use an oil based primer. I work with paint and we looked in to the primer/paint and it does not come up to snuff. Acrylic primer does not seal wood. if there is any sap left in the wood it will bleed through the water based paint and primer. So to make your projects beauty last prime with oil first then you can use any paint after.

Ninzerbean (author)builddoll2011-07-11

Great to know, thanks for the info.

kellimaier (author)2011-06-26

really brilliant...beautiful...

jarroyo3 (author)2011-06-23

Love it! Thanks so much for the ideas! It never ceases to amaze me what IKEA has to offer and the many ways in which it can be customized!

qm1441 (author)2011-01-01

I LOVE THIS....my mind is racing thinking of the limitless possibilities. Would make cool wainscoating...

NanaMomsers (author)2010-11-16

Great idea!

One problem tho' - Ikea no longer sells the Fira drawers in any size. So where do I get something like them??

wickedgranny (author)NanaMomsers2010-11-17

I made my own with 3/4 inch plywood. It's heavy but will last a life time. DIY can show you how to make drawers. You could build abox put in 2 shevles ,then build 3 drawers . They are only boxes. I have made alot of things I could not aford.Wickedgranny I'm 59 Years and have made most of my own furnture.

byhannah (author)2010-11-07

beeeautiful!

scmtngirl (author)2010-02-19

This is so inspiring! I like yours better than the original Anthropologie ones. Seems like a lot of the Anthro stuff is just begging to be recreated by clever people like yourself. Might have to try my hand at something like that.

I agree! Anthropologie and other expensive stores are great sources of inspiration, but I don't think I would actually buy from them. I mean, 2,000 bucks for a headboard and footboard? No thanks

devsharon (author)2009-06-17

This is a great project... One of my favorites.

cucumbersome (author)2009-06-07

Thanks, everyone!

omnibot (author)2009-06-07

Really nice.

Rob K (author)2009-06-06

I have no woodworking experience, which probably shows, but it means that ANYONE can make this!

Well it still turned out nice.

starshipminivan (author)2009-06-06

I love the results!

Weissensteinburg (author)2009-06-06

They turned out really well. I think you captured the effect you were going for perfectly.

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