Plans

Free DIY Furniture Plans: How to Build a Steppe 6 Drawer Dresser

12.20.13
Free DIY Furniture Plans: How to Build a Steppe 6 Drawer Dresser

We have such a special treat today my lovely fellow builders! I’ve teamed up with one of my favorite sweet friends, Lindsay of Makely Home to bring you a gorgeous set of plans and a fabulous showcase all in one! She has worked so very hard on building and finishing this beauty so I hope you will head over to visit her and gush over her build! She will be sharing more beautiful images, details about their experience building from my plans, as well as a bit about how this collaboration came to be! It was so much fun working with her on this and I adore having the chance to mix business with pleasure – so to speak. It isn’t all that often that I have the chance to work on a project for this site with someone I adore in real life, so yahoo for that.

  • 1 1/2 sheets of ¾” plywood (2nd sheet – only need 2’x2′ area)
  • 1 sheet 1/2″ plywood
  • 1 sheet 1/4″ plywood (or if your store will sell you a 1/2 sheet at 2’x8′ then awesome)
  • 1- 2×6 at 6′
  • 2- 2×3 at 8′ (1 front/back + 2 side per board)
  • 4- 1×6 at 8′ (3 at 26  1/2 + 1 at 16 1/4 per board for 2 boards, then 5 at 16 1/4 per board)
  • 2- 1×8 at 8′ (3 per board)
  • 4- 2×6 at 7 3/4″ legs
  • 4- 2×3 at 15 3/4″ frame rails
  • 2- 2×3 at 51 1/4″ frame front/back
  • 6- 1×6 at 26 1/2″ drawer backs
  • 12- 1×6 at 16 1/4″ drawer sides
  • 6- 1×8 at 27 11/16″ drawer front
  • 2- 3/4″ ply at 20″x22 1/4″ sides
  • 2- 3/4″ ply at 20″x57 1/4″ top/bottom
  • 1- 3/4″ ply at 19 1/4″ x 22 1/4″ center
  • 6- 1/2″ ply at 26 1/2″ x 5 3/4″ drawer faces
  • 6-1/2″ ply at 26 1/2″ x 17″ drawer bottoms
  • 1- 1/4″ ply at 57 1/4″ x 22 1/4″ back

Before beginning to build, always check in on my site to make sure you have the most up to date set of plans, I occasionally update and change the plans to make the building process easier or to allow for less expensive purchasing of materials! Read through the entire set of instructions and all comments before beginning this project. If you print out or save plans, be sure to check in on my site to be sure you have the most up to date set of plans, as I occasionally update things for ease of building or buying. If you are new to building, read through the GETTING STARTED section and other articles found under the BUILD tab in the menu on my site, it has valuable information about how to get started, tools and techniques. If you are unfamiliar with the finishing process, visit my Finishing school for some tips and tricks for painting like a pro and for special finishing practices. Use glue to secure your joints and Consider Painting or Staining individual sections prior to assembling. This makes the paint application virtually flawless. Coat with a spray on Poly or Wipe on Poly to protect your finish and your piece and it will last for age

Use a 2×6 to cut your leg pieces. Create your guidelines as seen in the second image below and cut as indicated. Use a circular saw if possible.

Build your frame. Use 2 ½” pocket hole screws and glue to connect. The outside rails will sit flush against the leg pieces. The inner rails should sit approximately 16 ½” apart, but this is not a crucial dimension, just space them as evenly as possible.

Build your Box. The side panels will sit inside the top and bottom panels and they will sit flush on the front, yet set in ¼” on the back side. This will allow for the back panel later. The bottom of your box will overhang your base by ¾” all the way around. Use 1 ¼” pocket hole screws with your pocket hole jig set for ¾” material and your pocket holes along the top and bottom of the panel (on the inside), and glue to fasten.

Fasten the Center Panel in Place. The center panel will sit back ¾” on the front side and ¼” on the back side and should be centered as precisely as possible between the side panels. Use 1 ¼” pocket hole screws with your pocket hole jig set for ¾” material and your pocket holes along the top and bottom of the panel, and glue to fasten.

 

The Design Confidential Furniture Plans to Build a Steppe 6 Drawer Dresser

Build Your Drawer Boxes. You will make of these 6 exactly the same way. In step 9, your drawer fronts will differ in their placement for 3 of your 6 drawers, but in this step and the next they are identical. The bottom will sit flush with the outside perimeter of the sides and back and can be secured using your brad nails and glue or 1” wood screws with a countersink bit to predrill and glue.

Secure your Drawer Faces and Attach Drawer Glides. The faces will be cut to size from your ½” plywood, and will sit flush with the drawer box on the top, sides, and bottom. The drawer glide should sit 3” up from the bottom of the box and 1” back from the front edge once the face has been attached.

Cut and Notch Your Drawer Fronts. Cut your fronts to size and then notch out the handle area using a jig saw. Do not attach Drawer Fronts to the drawers themselves yet.

Attach Drawer Glides to Side and Center Panels. Attach Glides in locations indicated below.  Work from the back for your measurements so they all end up at the same location (the center panel is set back farther than the sides from the front edge, so the dimensions are different from that side).  There will be 1/8” spacing around all edges of each drawer front and the placement of the drawer glides takes this into consideration.  For the bottom and center pair of drawer glides, measurements are from the bottom and back edge of the side and center panels and line up with the bottom edge of the drawer glides. For the top pair 2 of drawer glides the measurements are either from the top and back edge of the side and center panels or the bottom and back edges if you prefer, BUT they should still align with the bottom edge of the drawer glide.  All glides should sit 2 ¼” in from the back edge.

**Also noted on the diagram below is the relative space each drawer will occupy including the 1/8” spacing on the bottom for each drawer, except for the top drawers which will have an additional 1/8” spacing on the top as well.

Insert Drawers. Line up the drawer glides and insert drawers in their respective locations. In the diagram below, the drawer front is attached, however you will actually attach the drawer front once the drawers have been inserted into the unit so you can adjust for any amount you might be ‘off’.

Attach Drawer Fronts. You can do this after you have your drawers installed so that you can adjust for any slight discrepancies, but the location of the drawer fronts should be approximately what you see shown below in the diagram. There will be 1/8” spacing between the outside edge of the drawer front and the inside edge of the side panels on your box. There will also be 1/8” spacing above and below each drawer. There will be 1/8” spacing between the left and right drawers as well, but since they divide the space remaining, the overhang on the inside edges of your drawer fronts will be different than on the outside edges so I recommend using the outside edges as your guide. The Fronts will sit flush with the drawer on the bottom edge, will overhang 1 ½” on the top and 3/8” on the outside edge. The drawer shown below in the diagram would be a drawer for left hand side of your unit if you are facing your unit. These measurements for the overhang will be on the other side for the right hand side drawers. Attach drawer fronts with 1 1/4” brad nails and glue, where the front meets the sides of your drawer box (otherwise the nails will stick out the back of the drawer face).

Attach the Back Panel. Use 1 ¼” brad nails and glue to attach your back to the side and center panels.

Finishing Instructions

Fill any Screw, Nail or Pocket Holes, Sand and Finish as Desired.

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4 comments on “Free DIY Furniture Plans: How to Build a Steppe 6 Drawer Dresser”

  1. How do you attach the drawer fronts to the drawer and keep even spacing if you can’t screw the drawer fronts in position and you will only know if they are attached evenly once the drawer is shut?

    1. If you are more comfortable calculating the overhang of the front and attaching it prior to placing it, please feel free. Otherwise most people find it easiest to use shims or tile spacers to ensure 1/8″ all the way around. Hope that helps!

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