Whew! This summer has been a blur. Mostly from all the sawdust in the shop my glasses need a good cleaning. Oh and there’s a baby on the way. Baby G (a boy) is getting a “workshop” themed nursery, per the wife’s instructions.

Needless to say, this Craftsman Toolbox dresser came out fooling friends and family into thinking it was actually a Craftsman toolbox.  I failed terribly on getting a really good before picture, but basically this thing was in shambles. I did a lot of reinforcements, lots of new screws, and a fair amount of TiteBond wood glue.

It smelled like cat pee too, which was frustrating since I’m not a cat person. Some Snooky across town from me had the dresser first, and $100 later it was mine off CraigsList. I was looking for something with good bones, but had room for improvement. Snooky had spray painted the entire dresser (had massive runs too in the paint) white, and also the drawer fronts were spray paint metallic gold. It. Was. Horrible.


She spray painted right over the hardware too. Anyhow, I removed the hardware and filled in the holes with wood plugs. Belt sanded smooth and off to the races!



If you look at an actual Craftsman Toolbox, it has molding per se. So I cut down some boards and “trimmed” out the dresser, but first removed the front 2 pieces of molding seen above.


The drawers. In order to add “pulls” to the drawers, I measured out the height of the pull I made with the router and table saw, and notched out the drawer front to create a void for the pull to be fastened. I ripped a 1×6 into 1 3/8″ strips, and then used my edge guide on the router to cut the bull nose groove for fingers to grab. Then over to the Delta table saw, I did an angle cut to bevel the front of the drawer pull. Each one was cut to size for the specific drawer and glued/brad-nailed on.


The top was a complete re-make too. The original top would have been too short after cutting off the rounded edge to do anything with. I had some 3/4″ plywood in the shop from another project, so I added additional trim to that to give it more of a “top.”



After it was all doctored up and got a good sanding, I painted 2 coats of oil primer tinted gray on the whole thing. This covered the cat pee smell on the outside, and prepped the surface for the paint colors.

The handle is actually a piece of aluminum pipe I had laying in the shop, and the frame that holds it in is made from Hickory. I swear the wood is stronger than the metal.

Black paint sample from Home Depot for the drawer fronts, a color called “100 MPH” for the red color, and then “Aluminum” from rustoleum  to mimic the aluminum/metal fronts of the actual tool box. It was much more cost effective to just buy the sample $3 1/2 pints than to buy a quart of each.

The casters were added too, because they serve 2 purposes. Function and Looks. Shocker right?

I also picked up a 2×4′ peg board, and built a frame around it to hold “tools.” I put up real tools for the time being, I’m sure we’ll need to take down dangerous and sharp objects once he gets grabby and into things (so I hear, babies get into everything).

Super fun project! Be sure to pin it on your Pinterest Page. email me for any suggestions if you’d like to try your hand at one too.