Introduction: Fabric Covered IKEA Hemnes Drawer
Runner Up in the
Spring Cleaning Challenge
The hemnes series is a popular line from IKEA and this fabric-covered modification makes it more unique and personal. Or in my case covers up some blemishes and stickers from being a child's dresser. I made no attempt at all to remove or clean the dresser of stickers.
Step 1: Cut a Template
Place drawer face down on top of sturdy paper for a template. Trace around and cut out. Fold template in half.
Make a second template with more paper for your fabric by measuring the lip of the drawer and how much you want the fabric to fold over the back of drawer. In my case it was nearly two inches added to both long and short side of fabric to give me working room.
You might want to trim the first template down to use for your batting but I just trimmed the batting after I cut it to size since I just had three drawers. Your batting should be 1/4 inch smaller than drawer face size.
Step 2: Cover Drawer With Batting
Use your template from the drawer that is true to size and fold it in about 1/2 inch on one side each on long and short sides. Use this to cut out your batting. I used thin batting. If you want a puffier look you'll need to experiment with some adjustments to your fabric. *(In another step I also mentioned just cutting a strip off batting after cutting from the true to size template)
Use your hot glue and start at edge of drawer and glue a few lines. Let your glue gun get hot in between unless you have a mega big gun that eats big sticks.
Don't worry about the drawer holes but don't get glue on the holes (take off the knobs!).
Trim any excess you end up with at the end. Or off the sides if you notice it's too close to edge. You can also "patch" the batting by gluing down a strip if you mess up somewhere.
Step 3: Begin to Cover With Fabric
Put back on the knobs first to anchor your fabric. Position your fabric so the pattern looks straight and good and there's a nice lap covering the drawer lip on all four sides. Take an awl or a knitting needle or a clay tool like I used here and while pressing the screw thru the back, find the tip of screw with your sharp tip and begin to poke a hole in the fabric and shove the tool thru to widen it. Stuff the screw up thru hole and put knob on. Do second hole.
Once that is done, you should put a dollop of hot hot glue on each top and bottom upper lip of fabric on edge of drawers and smooth it down hard thru the fabric so there is not a bump. Keep an eye on fabric for twisting or warping. Do this on all four sides, just to anchor it while you work on really securing it.
Step 4: Do the Corners
The corners are tricky and will require your attention so be careful and read this part well.
The Hemnes drawer fits flush into the opening. This means there can be very little bulk in the top or side of corners. The material must be folded and glued back to behind the corner where it won't touch the opening.
Go ahead and glue down the fabric along the top lip heading toward a corner using very hot glue and small amounts, rubbing well to disperse it. (I do recommend using a sturdy duck/canvas/outfoors/upholstery type fabric for its ability to hide glue lumps). At the end of a corner glue the the fabric straight down along the edge and also the other edge so you end up with a triangle sticking up out of the corner. Put a very thin bead of glue along inner corner and fold the triangle down, pulling back to edge of drawer corner. Glue a small amount of fabric on back of the drawer and then clip excess fabric from corner triangle where you folded it to the back and use hot glue liberally on cut ends to make a good anchor.
Make sure you alternate folding the corners so you only have two on the top/bottom and two on the side. Not four for top/bottom and vice versa for sides. Might make drawer fit too tight. Work clockwise in a circle to make sure you don't miss out on gluing down stuff on the next step.
Step 5: Glue the Rest in Place and Cover With Ribbon
Once some corners are finished you'll need to trim out the spot on each side where fabric jumps the rails. Clip with sharp tip scissors to let fabric lay flat and remove any excess. Use glue under the fabric and don't get any on the track. That'll clear the fabric from the drawer's inside rails for you.
Once that's done, trim a straight edge all around the drawer backside and glue the lapping edge down to the back side of the drawer. Use 1/4 inch grosgrain ribbon (best for hiding glue lumps though I didn't have any on hand so pictured is satin ribbon) to hide the cut edge. Be sure to use the burn edges with a lighter trick to seal ribbon edges.
Step 6: Slip Drawers in to Dresser
Enjoy your new dresser, painted or left as-is in whatever color frame you bought it originally. I painted our Hemnes with a chalk paint and rubbed it down with wax.
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