I did it! I just finished my first IKEA hack! And I’m so excited to share it with you.

So my goal was to get the effect of a really nice mirrored piece of furniture without the designer price tag. Mirrored furniture can easily run in the thousands. I was looking for a budget-friendly option for our nursery. And that is where this DIY project comes in.

I started with the TARVA 6-drawer chest.  With an unfinished piece like this, the possibilities are endless. Any Google or Pinterest search for ‘IKEA Hack’ will tell you that. Step 1 was to paint the dresser to match the other furniture pieces in the nursery. I took the adjustable shelf from the bookshelf into Lowe’s and had them match the paint color as best they could. They did a nice job. I got to work straight away. I pulled out all the pieces I thought would be exterior facing so I could paint them before assembling the dresser.  Easier said than done. I had good intentions of painting all of the wood pieces before assembly.


Unfortunately, crawling around on the ground to paint wood planks while super pregnant is not the most comfortable thing. I made a good showing of it, but still had a lot of touch up work to do after the dresser was assembled. I also completely missed a few pieces. Whoops. On the plus side, I had a nice workroom to spread out in a.k.a the dining room. The damage from the water pipe burst still hasn’t been fixed so I spread out all over the sub floor to work. Josie already knew to stay away from the disaster zone and I didn’t have to work out in the cold. I did notice that the pine wood really soaked up the paint and I lost my semi-gloss finish.


Step 2 was to spice up the drawer fronts. I sent Josh back to Lowe’s with one of the drawers. He was to get the glass cutter at the store to cut 6 pieces of loose mirror to size. When he got to the store, I got a text that stated, “5 pieces right?” Thank goodness for technology. I would have sent him right back! We ended up getting half of the mirror for free because they had some leftover scraps lying around. I love the word free! Cutting the mirror is also free which I learned when we had glass panels cut for our kitchen cabinets.

The total cost for the mirrors was about $17. We attached the mirrors to the drawer fronts using liquid nails and let it dry overnight.

image3Tip: I guess the glass cutter was trying to err on the side of caution and cut the pieces slighting larger than the drawers. It would have been better if he cut them slightly smaller. It’s not exactly easy to trim glass and we were worried the dresser wouldn’t fit together once assembled.

Now I couldn’t just glue a mirror on the front of the dresser and call it a day. I had to spice it up a bit. My mom had told me about this company called O’verlays and I’ve been itching to give it a try and this was the perfect project to do so. They sell kits for IKEA furniture pieces! And you thought IKEA couldn’t get any better. I ordered the Jasmine panels for the TARVA chest and hit each panel with a coat of metallic silver spray paint. The panels are very lightweight so I recommend taking them out of the box ASAP before you husband finds a piece of cardboard and tries to throw it away!

IMG_4013Pretty! This box of pine was quickly becoming an elegant statement piece for the nursery. Josh tried to glue the first O’verlay onto the mirror using more liquid nails and we quickly discovered that was a big mess. It went on too thick and oozed out. After a lot of cleanup work, he decided to use some Krazy Glue instead. We also made sure that drawer was on the bottom, so you can barely tell. A little glue goes a long way. You don’t want the glue to peek out from behind the decorative panels. And they’re so light that they don’t need much to hold them up.

And here is the piece all put together!

image1I’m debating about whether or not to crawl on the floor to paint that last little foot. But at 37 weeks, I think I’ll leave it be for now. I was also thinking about painting the insides of the drawers purple and adding knobs. That will also have to be a project for another day. I was too excited to fill these drawers with teeny tiny little clothes.

How would you rate my first IKEA hack?



Add yours →

  1. I adore your dresser. Spent so many hours looking for a statement piece for our nursery and I may have to copy the idea. :). I notice you don’t have any pulls or hardware. How are you opening and closing the drawers?


    • Glad you like it 🙂 We’re still up in the air about what to do for knobs. We didn’t want to risk drilling through the mirror and my husband is worried that if we glue them on top, they’d just pop right off. The drawers can easily be opened from the sides until we make up our minds. You’ll have to share your project with me when complete! I’d love to see it.


      • Natalie Laffont May 16, 2016 — 5:49 pm

        I made some DIY mirrored nightstands out of the Ikea Rast and we used E600 glue for the knobs. They’ve held up beautifully! Can you post the measurements for the mirror panels on the drawers? I wanted to try this DIY so it’d be great if you could post the measurements!


  2. This came out amazing. Great Job.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Natalie Laffont May 16, 2016 — 5:51 pm

    Would love to try this DIY! Can you please list the measurements for the mirror panels? 🙂


    • The o’verlay measures 8.75″ x 29.375″. I recommend cutting the mirror a smidge smaller for a clean finish. I sent my husband to the store with a one of the drawer fronts and they cut the mirror a little too big. live and learn 😉


  4. I wish I had seen this before our trip to ikea earlier this week! We trekked to Denver (six hours away) just to go to ikea. We were looking for a nightstand for my husband, and they were all too small and short for our bed. I suggested hacking the three drawer Tarva dresser. He wasn’t too keen on the idea. If I could have shown him some of the ideas on Pinterest, he would have been sold. I love the mirrors on the front. The next time we go, I’m definitely going to get two. I didn’t know the overlays exited. I’m so happy to find this! Thank you!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Where do you go for the mirrors and to have them cut?
    Love the way it came out. I’m inspired!


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