elevating a hankie drawer.

I was surfing around on Instagram the other day and I saw a post by @deerrunvintage of a hankie drawer that she re-purposed by adding little legs to it.  I thought it was a great idea, and I just happened to have an orphaned hankie drawer in my workshop so I decided to give it a try.

But first, what is a hankie drawer?

It’s a small drawer, or in this case more of a hinged box, that sits on the top of a dresser.  They were meant to hold handkerchiefs (hence the name) or gloves.

I often remove them from dressers when I restyle them because I feel like a flat top is more versatile than one with hankie drawers on it.  For example, you can now use the piece to hold your wide screen TV, or use it as a buffet in the dining room.  Plus, who actually uses hankies anymore?

In the case of the above dresser, they didn’t even look like they belonged on top of that piece.  So when I painted it last March I took them off.

You can just barely see it in the photo above, but this pair of hankie drawers were connected to each other by a trim board that went all the way across the dresser.  So after I removed them, I had Ken cut the trim board off …

Next I purchased some parts from my local craft store to turn into little legs for the drawer.

I glued two different pieces together to make this …

And then I glued these to the bottom of my hankie drawer.

Next I painted it inside and out with Miss Mustard Seeds milk paint in Apron Strings.  It took three coats to get good coverage over the original dark finish.  I have to say, this color always seems to lean more towards pink in other people’s photos, while for me it always looks very coral.  Once the paint was dry, I added a section of Prima Marketing’s Overflowing Love transfer to the top of the box.

Once I had that in place I decided the box needed just a little something else on the front.  So I pulled out some of Prima Marketing’s Modeling Material and the Etruscan Accents mold.

I glued the mold in place before the modeling material was set up.  Once it dries it becomes very brittle and hard.  But when it’s fresh out of the mold you can curve it to fit your piece.  In this case the front of the box is a bit curved, so I gently pressed the mold into place while it was still pliable.  This mold was much easier to work with than the little bees I used on the cake plates I shared Monday with their tiny little legs.

Once it hardened up (probably about an hour or so later), I painted it as well.

Once that was dry, I sanded the box to distress it and then added a couple of coats of The Real Milk Paint Co’s Dead Flat Finishing Cream.

I lined the inside with some pretty scrapbook paper.

As you can see I got quite a bit more chipping on the inside of the box than I did on the outside.  I suspect that’s because the original finish was more protected (ie. less worn away) on the inside than it was on the outside.  So that original finish resisted the milk paint more.

To be honest, I’m not sure whether or not the feet were worth the effort.

Not that they required a ton of effort, just an added $10 or so in expense plus some glue.

I don’t know, maybe they do elevate the box just a bit in more ways than one.  What do you think?

30 thoughts on “elevating a hankie drawer.

  1. You had 2 of these. Could the other hankie box be on my dresser holding my jewelry? The legs do elevate it but it also can work great as is. Mine sits on top of a few books. You are so talented and there is nothing more cherished than receiving a gift that someone has put time and effort into making for you.


  2. I love the little legs. Gives it whimsy as does the mold on the front. What a cute little unique box that could hold so many things! And I love how you fixed up the inside. Such a sweet surprise when you open the lid. It’s the little things!


  3. Love the addition of the legs Linda. I love the color and how you added the scrapbook paper. This could be used on a desk to store pushpins, paperclips, etc. (Sidenote: Hooray the sun is shining here today! 😉)


  4. The legs are well worth the extra expense and time spent! Makes it look more high-end. And now I can go some little wooden pieces and spiff up some cigar boxes!


  5. Oh, I think the feet add a certain pizazz!! I’ve done something similar upcycling cigar and other boxes! Fun stuff!! Love your color choice, too! You’re ggggrrrrreat! Vicki in Colorado

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I have to admit that colors in the orange family are not usually one’s that I choose for painting things. Although I do love to wear this color in clothing. But I don’t think you’re alone Shelly, this color can be a tough sell.


    1. Yep, very close to Pantone’s Living Coral. I wouldn’t necessarily want a large piece in this color, but it’s great for adding a pop of color in small doses!


  6. I like the legs! ……and the applique! They make the box look more substantial. It’s interesting about color and how it can make you FEEL…..this orange-y color evokes a little veil of sadness in me (no I’M not fragile! lol)!! Thanks miss Quandie……beautifully executed as per usual (-:


  7. I have two of these in my garage, now I have inspiration! Turned out so cute. Feet are the answer to making these look like stand alone trinket boxes.


  8. Great idea and use for those little Hankie Drawers. I never really liked them on dressers but they are charming the way you finished them. 😊


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