Dresser Turned Bar Cabinet for The Drew Barrymore Show


Hi Friends!  What a week it’s been, first my Yankee Magazine issue came out and then I shared that I was going to be on The Drew Barrymore Show!  So. Much. Excitement!

After revealing my dresser turned bar cabinet transformation on the show I received a ton of questions, mainly, HOW?

So I figured I’d go into a little more detail here!

I started with a simple pine dresser and a surprise item from Drew that had to be incorporated.


The first step in this transformation was to first remove all the knobs, drawers and drawer glides on the top three drawers and set them aside. 

I then lightly sanded the screw holes and filled them all with wood filler and let them dry. 

Next I removed the drawer box bottom of one of the drawers and nailed it inside of the middle cabinet frame using 1” brad nails to create a shelf. 

The next step in the process was sawing off the legs.  This dresser was rather petite and I want my cabinet to have a bit of presence.  Using my jig saw, I carefully removed the legs.  I purchased inexpensive 1 ¾ dowels to serve as the new legs, but needed to create a frame for them to attach to.  I traced and marked the dowels at the end of two 1×2 pine boards.  With the board clamped in place I pre-drilled holes through the 1×2 and the dowel and attached them with a 3 ½ inch wood screw and wood glue.  


To keep this project budget friendly, I decided to reuse the drawer fronts to create doors for my cabinet.  I separated them from the drawer boxes and dry fitted them in place–They were a perfect fit, no cutting necessary!  I knew the center of the cabinet would be open, so I decided to install a wine glass rack to display and have easy access to wine glasses, while the wine (and other things) stay hidden.

To attach the legs, I applied wood glue and clamped the new legs in place, pre-drilling holes all along the base and securing them with wood screws.  I cut smaller dowels to place in between the legs for extra support and stability, and later was able to add a shelf from some scrap wood that I had on hand.  

For the remaining unused drawer front, I was super excited because I came up with a fun way to repurpose it as a multifunctional shelf, bar surface and a removable serving tray!

Using some drawer pulls I had on hand, I attached them to the top to be used as handles, and two ledge pulls installed upside down to serve as the feet of my tray, but also serves as a way to keep the serving surface in place on top of the drawer.

I decided to paint the cabinet a satin black.  One of my favorite ways to save money is to invest in a good quality paint brush.  While the investment might be greater up front if you take good care of it it will last through multiple uses, saving you money in the long run.  I hand painted the entire piece with the exception of the doors and drawer front.

I bought some very inexpensive hinges and installed the “doors” which are really just the drawer fronts repurposed.  I decided to stain the fronts of the cabinet for a two toned look.  For staining wood, I always use inexpensive dish sponges.  You can buy them 6 for a dollar at any Dollar store.  I cut them in half and use them wearing gloves to get the perfect amount of control and pressure over the finish.


Once everything was stained and painted, I needed to figure out how to incorporate my surprise item.  I had originally intended on creating a fun stencil, but I have to be honest, the yellow paint really threw me for a loop.  Once I realized that staining the back of the cabinet wasn’t going to work, I decided to incorporate the Pablo Yellow paint.  I wasn’t so sure in the beginning but it ended up being a fun little accent to the piece. 


I then added some knobs and installed a wine glass rack!  At the very last minute, I decided to freehand a black arch in the center of the yellow accent wall of the cabinet to give it a little personality!  And seriously, I don’t think I could love this bar cabinet more!


DIY Plant Stands/Drink Tables




Be sure to tune into The Drew Barrymore Show for more ideas and fun design inspiration!



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  1. Brenda
    February 27, 2021 / 10:11 pm

    Truly amazing!! Of course, yours was the biggest and best transformation!!! You must be so proud!

    • madebycarli
      February 28, 2021 / 10:20 am

      Thank you so much Brenda!! It as such a fun experience and I feel blessed to have been in such good company 💓

  2. Bobbi
    February 28, 2021 / 11:25 am

    Is the dresser available for purchase somewhere or made by the show?

  3. Anahita
    March 6, 2021 / 3:50 pm

    Could you tell me what stain you used?

    • madebycarli
      March 7, 2021 / 8:20 am

      Hello, yes I used aged walnut gel stain, with classic grey layered on top☺️

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