May the force be with your new Star Wars drawers

Have a Star Wars fan who would love a themed chest of drawers? Here’s how to make them using Star Wars wallpaper decoupage.

A common concern I hear from people wanting to paint furniture is that they’re afraid to start. And if your first piece is a family heirloom then yes, be cautious. If you want to start then find a reasonable quality, affordable piece of furniture, choose a paint colour you like, and just have a go.

The worst thing that happens is you don’t like it. You can sand off the paint and try again. There’s little stress when there’s little pressure.

Feel the fear and do it anyway

Susan Jeffers

With that in mind, on to today’s piece…

I found this blue, children’s chest of drawers on Freecycle. It was in great condition and I didn’t know initially that it was an IKEA piece called Busunge.

When I’m upcycling to sell, I rarely use IKEA furniture because so many people know the price and quality of IKEA pieces, so there’s a limit to its profitability.

Blue chest of drawers

Here’s a tip to help you find information about your pieces.

Google Lens

Take a photo of your piece, then open it in Google Photos and select the Google Lens icon. Google Lens shows you photos of similar items which is how I found out that this was an IKEA product.

Find item using google Lens

It’s a great tool to show if your item is still for sale, how much it is or where you can buy it. For example, if you’re missing a handle, take a photo and you’ll see if there’s somewhere you can buy a matching one. It’s so helpful!

This post may include affiliate links so you can easily find the products I love and use myself. If you purchase these products, I may earn a small commission at no extra cost to you.

A lick of paint

I scuff sanded the outside but didn’t prime it as it isn’t essential with chalk paint. I used three coats of the paint, French Gray by GraceMary.

Initially I painted just the outside before I decided to do the inside too. There’s a balance between being a perfectionist and painting everything and wasting time on areas that will never be seen.

Using French Gray Paint

Jumping ahead slightly, I wanted to show one of the mistakes I made on this piece.

Close up of the different paint colour

The difficulty with paint is that it looks a different colour depending on whether it’s wet or dry.

So when doing paint touch-ups, it’s really important to stir the paint thoroughly to ensure the exact colour match. You won’t be able to see if the colour is off until after it has dried. Which was the mistake I made. Oops.

Here I needed to do another full coat to cover the botched touched-up areas. So for the cost of paint, time and a bit of pride, it was a lesson well learned.

Lining up the wallpaper

I chose to use this comic book-style Star Wars wallpaper. My son is born on Star Wars Day (May the 4th (be with you)), so it’s perfect for his room.

To measure the paper, I placed it under the drawers and drew a line where I wanted to cut. Make sure to check where the cuts will be between the drawers. For an easy life, avoid cutting between fiddly bits like words which are harder to line up.

Measuring the paper for the drawer

As the piece had removable handles, I used the circle as a template to cut out the hole in the paper.

The removable handle

With decoupage, it’s best to either cut the paper slightly short of the edges or slightly over. Essentially don’t cut it just right, Goldilocks.

If you cut it slightly short, job done. The hard bit about this way is cutting a perfectly straight line, especially if you’re using scissors.

I cut it slightly long. After the glue dried, I used 180 grit sandpaper to sand the paper where it met the drawer edge to tear a clean edge. The advantage of this method is that you don’t need to precisely cut the paper to size but you do have the extra sanding step.

Applying the wallpaper

I used a foam brush to apply a thin layer of Mod Podge to the drawer front. Before it was dry, I placed the paper and used a brayer to smooth out any bumps or bubbles. There are other ways to decoupage which I explained here but this method worked out fine.

Using a brayer to smooth the paper out

I then used 180 grit sandpaper and a sanding block to distress the paper lightly. The top drawer in this photo is distressed while the bottom isn’t. It’s subtle but gives it a more worn look which I like.

Close up of the paper

The finished piece

Finished piece

Here it is styled in my son’s bedroom. Grey is an easy colour to match with many things so even if my son grows up not liking Star Wars, it’s an easy fix to change the paper to something else.

Finished piece in a bedroom

And no piece is signed off as complete without approval from the su-purr-visor, Pixel. So far so good but she reserves the right to change her mind at any time.

Finished piece being inspected by Pixel the cat

So we definitely haven’t gone to the dark side with this one, if anything it’s the light (grey) side.

One day I’ll make something with Harry Potter. What themed wallpaper would you use? Let me know in the comments below!



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Ginny
Ginny
2 months ago

Thank you for your really useful tips. It has inspired me to have a go myself. Wish me luck.