the gothic hanky drawers.

Are you wondering what I did with the hanky drawers that were on the gothic dresser?

Well, first of all I should mention that it was very easy to take them off the dresser.  There was a felt liner inside each one, so I pulled that out and could see that they were held in place by a couple of screws.  I simply unscrewed them and they came right off.

You might be wondering if that meant there were screw holes in the dresser top, and yes, there were … or more correctly there are.  I just left them.  They were small, and the wood top of the dresser had plenty of dings and other blemishes.  I like to embrace those rather than try to hide them.  Since I gave the dresser top a rustic waxed finish the dings just blend right in.

I keep referring to these as hanky ‘drawers’, but really in this case they are just a hinged box not technically a drawer.

Once I had them removed I realized they would make fun little keepsake boxes.

I started by painting them with some Homestead House milk paint in a color called Stone Fence.  This is one of my favorites.  It’s a pale, warm grey (you can see more of it on this foot board shelf).

I didn’t do much in the way of prep before painting.  I was OK with as much or as little chipping as fate would deliver.  I did wipe them down with some TSP substitute though.

After the second coat of paint was dry, I sanded rather haphazardly.  Again, I wasn’t feeling very picky about my results.  I wanted an aged, distressed look.

Next I added some Iron Orchid Designs transfers to the tops of the boxes.  Both are from their French Pots line and are intended to be used on clay pots, but I have found any number of other great uses for them!

This design is from French Pots I.

And this one is from French Pots III.

After applying the transfers, I sanded very lightly with some 220 grit sandpaper.  Next I wiped the boxes down and then added a top coat of The Real Milk Paint Co’s Dead Flat.

I lined the insides of the boxes with a page from an old Atlas.

You could keep a stash of old photos in one of these boxes.

Or maybe your old love letters.  I don’t know, does anyone write letters anymore?

Maybe you can just keep your vintage jewelry in it.

So many possibilities, what would you keep in yours?

16 thoughts on “the gothic hanky drawers.

  1. Adorable! I would use them for actual hankies 😉 You’ve gotten a lot of mileage out of that dresser! Each piece is really lovely. I can see the article in a magazine…..”Deconstructed Vintage”.


  2. So cute! I would use one on my nightstand for my reading glasses. I have around ten pairs that I share with my husband. We can never find them, but maybe if I used one of those boxes I could keep them in there and not have to hunt all over the house for them! (Who am I kidding) Anyway, it would look good there! Lol


    1. LOL, I’m right there with you Shelly. I seriously have about 20 pairs of readers, but never seem to have one right when I need it. These boxes would be perfect for a stash of them!


  3. Love these! An extra bonus for sure. I would use them for my family obituary and prayer card collection. Little newspaper articles about family members that I clipped and saved, but for some reason, haven’t put into a nice, neat,scrapbook. Not sure why – these are in a little cigar box right now and when I go in to put a new one in, I go through them and reminisce. I always wonder if anyone else has a little non-collection of these?


  4. I love these little boxes. I never knew that you could remove them. Are some of them glued down, as well as, screwed down? What a great idea! I have seen so many of this type of dresser refinished or repainted and the boxes left in place. I do think that it looks odd.


    1. I always thought they were probably glued down as well, but I have yet to run into any that are. This is probably the 3rd or 4th time I’ve removed these drawers from a dresser. Since these had a hinged top it was easy to get to the screws and remove them. With actual drawers you may have to do a little sleuthing to figure out how they are attached.


  5. I would put all my diamonds,rubies,emeralds and pearls in them.That is if I had them. I do have some
    Pretty rings but I wear them most of the time. Anyway they are really cute Catch-alls. Love to you,Mom and Debbie. Betty from Ontario,Canada.


  6. These are darling and I love those transfers. Since many of us now use a table as desk while we may gain surface area we lose storage capability. This would be perfect to store my stapler and other little office supplies right on top yet out of sight.


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