Before doing anything, remove your drawers and grab a screwdriver to unscrew the existing handles and hardware from the side of the drawer. Keep these handy by popping them into a cup or a zip-lock bag – so they don't disappear!
If you've decided to replace the handles on your drawers with new ones – like we're doing – you're going to need to fill the existing holes with Spakfilla. Scrape on, then smooth away any excess and set aside to wait for it to dry. Once it is, give it a light sand with 180-grit sandpaper, then wipe clean.
If you're doing this by hand, make sure you have ample sanding blocks and pieces of sandpaper – you're going to need quite a bit to get the table down to its natural timber. Using an electric sander might be easier. Pick up one of these from Bunnings. Make sure you have your dust mask and eye protection on for this – you'll end up covered in dust, and you don't want to be breathing that stuff in!
Before applying the primer, grab a damp cloth and sponge your cupboard clean. You need it to be dry and dust-free before applying the paint.
Before you begin priming and painting, apply some painter's tape to the edges of your cupboards and drawers – this will allow for a nice, neat finish.
It's prime time! For this we're using a Zinsser shellac-based primer, just in case there's any oily residue left over from the old paint. This primer dries really quickly, so you should be able to paint fairly soon after applying. Just remember to give it a light sand after, then wipe away the dust – this way the paint will adhere more easily.
Before pouring your paint into the tray, give your tin a good shake so the pigment is well distributed. Then you're ready for your topcoat – roll it on in long, even strokes. Use a brush for all those tricky to reach places. Wait for it to dry, then give it a light sand with 180-grit sandpaper before applying a second coat. While this is drying, you may want to spray your handles. We chose a Rose Gold colour, which we applied using a spray can after giving the handles a light sand (this helps the paint stick easier).
Once the paint is dry, use a tape measure and a pencil to mark up where the handles go – mark the centre point first. Then place the handle against it and mark up where the screw holes are on your handle. Mark those spots with a pencil. To make sure your handle is screwed on even and straight, use a square.
Before you start drilling, make sure your drill bit is a little larger than your screw to make sure it's the perfect fit.
Affix your hessian with a spray adhesive – simply spray on to the front of the drawers and wait five or so seconds before placing the hessian over the top. Try to ensure you get the grain of the hessian straight. Once it's in place, simply cut around the edges of the drawer. It's best to leave about an inch overlap on each side when you're initially measuring your material, then trim your piece to fit the edges of the drawer.
Poke some holes through the hessian using your awl (or a screwdriver), and screw in your new handles, then re-attach any hardware from the sides. Your bedside table upcycle is complete!
It's as easy as that to refresh and improve the quality of an old set of bedside tables.