Learn how to build a small DIY dresser that also works as a nightstand with woodworking plans and tutorial. I added fun detail using my Cricut Maker.
I am so excited to share this project with you! It is a simple and easy DIY dresser with 3 drawers. It is the perfect size that can also work as a nightstand which is where it will live in our home.
The overall design is simple and minimalistic but I decided to give it a little twist with the patterned veneer! have wanted to do this ever since I got my Cricut Maker and I found out that it could cut veneer. Imagine the possibilities.
I had some walnut plywood leftover from another project and put it to good use with this project. How gorgeous is the rich deep color?!
***This post is sponsored by Cricut. Thank you for supporting the brands that make it possible to bring you new projects***
To build dresser
- Lumber per the plans
- Miter saw
- Circular saw/ table saw
- Kreg Jig
- 1-¼″Pocket hole screws
- 2-½″ pocket holes
- Wood Glue
- Edge banding
- Cricut EasyPress Mini
For the drawer fronts
How to build the dresser
Building the dresser is pretty straightforward. It is basically just a few boxes.
Step 1 – Build the box and drawers
Make all the cuts and pocket holes per the plans and build the box and the drawers. This is quite straightforward. Just be sure to check for square at every single step.
Step 2 – Install the drawers and drawer fronts
Install the drawers using the 12″ drawer slides and attach the drawer fronts. I have designed this dresser to have 1×8 as drawer fronts. I used oak plywood ripped down to size for the drawer fronts since I had enough leftover from a previous project.
That completes the box of the dresser.
Step 3 – Build/attach legs
The legs you build and attach are totally customizable. You could even attach hairpin legs if you like! I built slightly angled legs to match the other nightstand that is in the room. These will be attached to the dresser using 2″ wood screws after finishing. The plans walk you through step by step.
How to make the drawer fronts
Step 1 – Design it
Look through all the patterns in Design Space and find a geometric pattern that you like. Remember, it shouldn’t have very small features. The entire pattern should also be connected to each other.
- Resize the design to 7.25″ to match the width of the drawer fronts made by 1×8.
Note – the entire dresser is designed around being able to apply 3 square patterns to the drawer fronts. If you change the size and number, you will have to redesign the dresser in order to achieve the same look.
Step 2 – Load the mat
- Load the veneer on the StrongGrip mat.
- Make sure it is well attached with a brayer and apply masking tape on the four edges to keep it from moving during the cut.
Step 3 – Make the cut
- Load the Deep-point blade in the Cricut Maker and load the mat.
- In design space, pick wood veneers as the material and press go.
The Cricut Maker cuts the veneer pretty quick (compared to basswood or chipboard). It makes about 4 passes over each curve. It took about 7-10 minutes for each sheet.
Step 4 – Unload the veneer
Once the cut is completed, unload the mat from the machine and remove the veneer by pulling away the mat from the veneer. This is important to make sure you don’t damage or break the veneer.
Step 5 – Attach to the drawer fronts
Use a foam pouncer to apply wood glue to the veneer. This is almost like stenciling – hold down the veneer firmly. You don’t want to get the wood glue on the front of the veneer.
Align and apply the veneer to the drawer fronts and hold them down using painter’s tape. The veneer will start to curl once the glue is applied so be careful about the positioning. Once everything is in place, you can apply more weight (I used books) to let dry overnight.
When applying the wood glue, keep the veneer on a surface that is ok to get dirty and lightly dap glue with a glue brush – almost like stenciling. It is important to be careful about this so you don’t get glue on the front of the veneer.
Step 6 – Finish the drawer
Apply matching edge banding around the drawer to finish the edges. This is totally your choice. In fact, I was debating if I should use oak edge banding or walnut. In the end, walnut won.
And that’s it! I finished the entire dresser with boiled linseed oil and added some simple knobs.
Here is the finished dresser. I am so happy with how it turned out!
I have wanted to try this technique with the veneer and Cricut for a long time, and I think this was the perfect project to bring it to life.
Printable Plans for the dresser
Click the link below to get the woodworking plans for this project. The plans have all the dimensions plus step-by-step instructions with illustrations to help you build the dresser.