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DIY drawer unit

I wanted to improve the space in the entrance, and we really needed storage (bike helmets, caps, motorbike equipment…a lot of stuff). Making a piece of furniture is something I had in mind for a long time….but I was not sure If I was capable to do so.

Well, I tried and…..I’m really pleased with my work!! There are definitely things to improve, but it’s not bad as a first try! What do you think?
So, if you feel inspired, here is the tutorial.
It’s a real DIY, it’s mean I used basic supplies (nails, screws, and glue) and simple powers tools (drill and sanding machine). It’s definitely not a carpenter work, but this means you can do it by yourself!


  • plywood 16mm
  • nails 1.5′
  • small metal brackets
  • screws
  • wooden glue
  • stain
  • paint


  • hammer
  • drill
  • sanding machine
  • ruler & pencil
  • brushes

You need to cut the plywood panels, dimensions are:

To make the feet:

2 pieces 38 x 12 cm

1 piece 92 x 12 cm

To make the structure:

2 pieces 40 x 122 cm (top & bottom)

1 piece 40 x 118.8 cm (middle shelf)

2 pieces 40 x 68.8 cm (sides)

1 piece 40 x 41 cm (vertical division)

1 piece 40 x 26 cm (vertical division)

2 pieces 26 x 58.5 cm (back)

2 pieces 41 x 58.5 cm (back)

2 small drawers:

4 pieces 58 x 25.5 cm (front & back)

4 pieces 35 x 25.5 cm (sides)

2 pieces 54.8 x 35 cm (bottoms)

2 big drawers:

4 pieces 58 x 40 cm (front & back)

4 pieces 35 x 40 cm (sides)

2 pieces 54.8 x 35 cm (bottoms)

Sorry it’s in centimeters…does someone know how to make the conversion to the US metric system?

I ask Google but the measurements are accurate for this tutorial and I don’t want to screw up!

Step 1: make the feet

Glue two pieces of  38 x 12 cm together. Fix in between the 92 x 12 cm piece. Screw some brackets to be sure it’s perpendicular.

Step 2: mark the measurements

Draw on the side panels the position of the middle shelf. Draw on the bottom, top and middle shelf, the position of the two vertical divisions. This will help a lot when you will have to nail the panels together. It’s easier to do it before assembling!

Step 3: make the structure

Nail and glue the bottom with the side panels. Do the same with the vertical division in the middle (where you drew the position) and the two back pieces 41 x 58.5 cm.
Warning: Those two back pieces are missing in my tutorial because the wood store forgot them (to delivery or to cut … I don’t want to know why they screwed up)

Next you will have to nail and glue the middle shelf with the side and the vertical division. Before doing it, you need to put nails in both directions in the center of the middle shelf (where you drew). Some nails will help to fix the lower panel and some other to fix the top panel.

Then you nail and glue the two back panels and the vertical division. Again the two lower back panels are missing in the picture. Finish by nailing and gluing the top.

Step 4: Fix the feet
Nail and glue the feet with the structure. Take the measurements to have it centered.

 Step 5: Make the drawers
Take the bottom drawer piece 54.8 x 35 cm, glue and nail the sides on it.

You also need to nail and glue the sides together.

Step 6: Stain & paint

Stain the structure in dark, and paint the front of the drawers in white. I choose to apply three coats of acrylic paint, I only have a brush the brush strokes show up a little. I think you will obtain the best result using a small roller or maybe some Spray paint

Step 7: Make the handles

I choose to upcycle an old leather belt to make the handles, but you can use other hardware if you like to. Cut the belt into 4 and drill 2 holes in each leather piece.
Drill two holes in each drawer front, and fix the handle with bolts and nuts.
Put the drawers back in place and TADAAAAAM!!!


Conclusions: I’m really happy with my new piece of furniture. I didn’t use any sliders for the drawers, so they are a little heavy. It’s ok because the unit in the entrance and I don’t use it that often. But it will definitely not work for a daily use.
Next project for the entrance: put something a little more fancy on the walls…any suggestion?

If you are interested by more DIY furniture, you can take a look at this other plywood project!



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  1. * * * / * * *

    I am so impressed! I looks great, and has great function too. Good work!

  2. * * * / * * *

    Informative and interesting which we share with you so i think so it is very useful and knowledgeable. I would like to thank you for the efforts. I am tiring the same best work from me in the future as well.

  3. * * * / * * *

    Looks great. I like this wooden project very much. It is really great idea to make our home furnished with woods. I love furniture. Also I love your drawer unit. πŸ™‚

  4. * * * / * * *

    Really, i love the wooden DIY project. It makes the house become greater; especially, people enjoy the rustic space. Thanks the author! the article is great!

  5. * * * / * * *

    How do you paint it? You use spray paint, chalk paint or anything else?

    • * * * / * * *

      Hello Diane, I used white acrylic paint for the drawers, and wood stain, early American shade, for the structure. I put two coats of varnish on the stained wood. I just used a brush to apply the paint.

  6. richard
    * * * / * * *

    I have read your post. very nice post. I found this post to be very informative and helpful. I will have to recommend you to my friends.

  7. * * * / * * *

    I think the drawer looked really nice and classy! I don't think I will ever have as much patience to build something this big from scratch, though!

    • * * * / * * *

      Thanks James! I like building stuff…so it was quite fun. But you are right it takes time!

  8. Eula Smith
    * * * / * * *

    Great job, it looks fantastic, like a new one!

  9. * * * / * * *

    Great idea. I wanna make it for own. Thanks for your informative info.

  10. * * * / * * *

    Beautifully done Ama, I’ve seen a lot of these throughout my career and let me tell you that you did a fantastic job. With that much attention to detail and excellent finish, anyone would think it was professionally made. Keep up the great work, you’ve got real talent!

    • amaryllis
      * * * / * * *

      Thanks you James πŸ™‚

  11. Andrew
    * * * / * * *

    They look great! Very nice and informative guide.

  12. Jeni
    * * * / * * *

    Hello there! I’m a new follower! Found you from Vanessa blog, Love Live DIY – love the post about how you paid off your home. Congrats! πŸ™‚ We just bought a home and I hope we can also knock our mortgage out sooner! OH – and I LOVE this drawer unit. Adorable!

  13. Aylen moema
    * * * / * * *

    I read your article Really, this is a helpful post for making DIY drawer unit. Thanks again for share this idea with us. I hope you will share with us a new concept for the home product.

  14. Michael
    * * * / * * *

    This article are complete guide to making drawer unit. It also help to get idea about tools to makes your things better. Thanks to you for published great article.

  15. Cedric Prigent
    * * * / * * *

    After spending some time reading your article on DIY drawer unit, I got to say you, hello, Ama! I think it’ll save me serious time doing the research for one of the resources for our community as well as the website, sander.

  16. Edward
    * * * / * * *

    I’m gonna make it on Sunday!!! Thanks for the such awesome idea. <3