How to Build a Drawer

I don’t know about you but I have always shied away from any project with drawers. The idea of making a drawer seemed super scary and like something I was sure to screw up. But when I was planning the wardrobe cabinet for my room, i realized they were kind of inevitable. I was going to have to put my big girl pants on and get over my fear in order to make the closet of my dreams.

drawer 6

Step one:

Figure out where your drawers are going.

Like I said, my drawers were going to be the base for my wardrobe project. I have already built the base and now I’m ready to add the three drawers. Each box is 24” deep x 33” wide.

drawer 8

Step two:

Pick your drawer slides.

There are so many different types of drawers slides. For this project I chose bottom mount drawer slides with a 75 pound weight limit. This is super important if you’re building drawers for a pantry, canned food can get really heavy so make sure your slides are going to do the job. The box where my drawers are going it 24 inches deep so I chose slides that were 22 inches in depth.

drawer 5

Step Three:

Attach slide to cabinet.

There are 4 pieces in each set. Two that attached to the drawer and two that attach to the wall. Find the slides that attached to the wall and determine which one is left and right. On mine, the wheel is in the front on the wall as pictured. I installed my drawer slide ½ inch above the bottom of the box. To make it a little easier, I used scrap wood that was ½ inch tall and set the drawer slide on that to mark the holes. I pre drilled the holes and used three of the included screw to secure the slide to the wall.

Repeat process for second side.

drawer 1

Step Four:

Measure and cut drawer base.

The boxes where my drawers will sit are 33” wide. For these slides the drawer should be 1” smaller than the total width so I will make my drawer 32 inches wide. The slides are 22” deep so my total drawer bottom will be 22 inches deep x 32 inches wide. Since my drawers will be holding clothing, I used ½” thick plywood for the base, you might need to adjust your material to account for the weight the drawer will need to hold.

Once cut, I attached the second part of the slides to the bottom of the drawer. I slid the drawer bottom in place to make sure it fits and slides easily.

IMG_4841

Step Five:

Cut and attach sides.

I measured the height of the drawer opening, in my case it’s 8”. After taking into account the drawer slides and a little wiggle room, I decided to use 1×6 boards to create the sides of my drawer. I cut two boards at 32” for the front and back then two more boards at 21.5” for the sides. I first screwed all 4 sides together using simple wood screws. Lastly I used screws to secure the drawer sides to the bottom.

IMG_4842

Step 6:

Finishing.

Once my entire cabinet it complete I will add a drawer front but that’s going to have to wait. For now, I’ll sand the drawers to make sure my sweater’s don’t get snagged.

 

I’m so happy I decided to take on this task. I know this cabinet wouldn’t be nearly as functional without these three giant drawers to store all my clothes. I have a feeling this is going to come in very handy in the future.

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