Ikea Tarva Dresser Makeover

I did this project back in October for the room I'm designing for my mom. I can't believe it has taken me this long to get pictures of it! It turned out better than I had imagined and am super excited to share it with you! This dresser is similar to the Rast dresser I did a hack/makeover with last year, but a little bit bigger and it has legs. I wasn't a fan of how it looked as is, but for $79 for a decent size dresser, how can you help but not imagine what it could become? :)
Ikea Tarva dresser makeover
This was relatively simple to take it from blah to cute. The main factor being the addition of molding both on the drawers and on the bottom.

So, to get this look....I'm going to spare you the boredom of how to put this dresser together. You can find that in the manual. Once it was all together though, I did have to do a little disassembling in the end to make the feet the perfect height for the molding. So, that's essentially the first step. I assembled the dresser and grabbed the base molding I wanted to use. I put it up against the dresser where it would overlap with the edge of the dresser bottom itself. Then marked the bottom of the molding against the legs. This is where I cut the legs to length so that the bottom of the molding would hit the bottom of the legs. Sorry no pictures! (bad blogger :/)

I then put the new sized legs back on and painted the whole piece (minus the drawers) white. I used this tutorial here for the drawers. It gave me that perfect heather grayish brown finish.

Once the drawers were dry, I added some character to where the knobs would be placed. I took some spackling compound and a stencil and placed it over the hole.
cute idea to dress up drawer knobs
 I then took a putty knife and scraped some spackle over the stencil.
cute idea to dress up drawer pulls
This gives the perfect raised and textured little detail.
Cute ideas to dress up drawer knobs or pulls
I then of course switched out the factory knobs with some cute little pulls from Hobby Lobby. I love how these look together!
Cute idea for drawer pulls!
Next was adding the molding onto the drawers. I used lattice pieces that I found at Home Depot. I believe I used 2 of the 8 foot pieces. I then cut them with mitered corners so they would fit each drawer. I then painted them the same color of the rest of the dresser.
As for putting them on the dresser? I used hot glue. Yep. I knew wood glue wouldn't work so I just went for the next option in my drawer lol. Haven't come off yet ;) And if they do, I'll just throw some more hot glue on them.
Ikea Tarva dresser makeover
Next was adding on the base molding. I mitered the connecting edges and then secured it to the legs and dresser using wood glue. I also secured it additionally with a nail gun onto the legs. I didn't mean to use the same molding that was already in the room, but I'm glad I did. This ended up looking really great against the wall.
Ikea Tarva dresser makeover
I love how all the elements worked so well together. It kind of reminds me of something you would find in a Swiss chalet.
Ikea Tarva dresser makeover
Here's a little sneak peak of the room that it's in that I'll share with you soon! It's taken almost over a year to get it done and it's finally almost there. Close enough that I think I'll share it with you next week :)
Ikea Tarva dresser makeover

As for the cost to take it from Ikea grade to beautiful? Keep in mind that I made this like 7 months ago so this is a definite approximate amount.
Dresser: $79
Base Molding: Free (had on hand) would cost up to $10 otherwise ?
Lattice: approx. $10
Paint: Free (had on hand)
Spackle: Free (had on hand)
Drawer Pulls: $12
So, total for me was just around $100.


  1. Hi,

    İt's amazing! I like it.



  2. SUCH an amazing transformation!!! LOVE how it turned out!

  3. What a unique piece. I am finding that more and more people are searching for unique furniture designs instead of the typical store bought. Great description as well. So easy!

  4. hello where did you get the stencil?

  5. What did you do for stain? It looks more muted than the original wood.

  6. Do you remember the thickness of the lattice you used?


happy DIYing! Alicia