A few weeks ago I took some time to do a little bit of DIYing. We had purchased these bedside drawers from IKEA a while ago, stained and painted, and replaced the knobs. I thought I’d go ahead and see what these would look like if I replaced the black knobs with Leather Handles.
Here’s a quick how-to of what I did.
First you’ll need the following:
Straight Edge (Longer than 13”)
Knife or Box Cutter
(optional) Leather Strap Cutter
(optional) Cutting Mat
I’ve had this metal T-Square for some time. I purchased it at an art store way back when I was studying art in college. The box cutter can be acquired at any hardware store. The Cutting Mat is made by Fiskars and was purchased at JoAnn. I have the extra large size. I like mine to fill as much of my work area as possible. I’ve had 2 others previous to this. I would estimate that with heavy use its lifespan is about 1-2 years. The punch and strap cutter was purchased at Tandy Leather Supply. I’ve had both of these for several years and they both tend to work pretty well. For extremely heavy weight leather, or if the punch seems to get dull, you can try having another scrap piece of material underneath the piece that your punching so that you get a clean cut hole.
Veg Tan Leather (at least 5oz)
You can go with a heavier weight leather. Just keep in mind that your length may vary. The piece on the far left is a template I created. Once I measured everything to my needs I usually like to have a master template to work from. This helps to eliminate having to measure certain details, like where holes should be, several times.
I’m not certain where exactly I purchased this leather. But, if you’re in Los Angeles I would suggest taking a trip to Sav-Mor Leather Supply and digging through their scraps. You may get lucky and find enough leather material that would work for this project. Tandy Leather may also have some material small and large enough. Other places you can contact are Weaver or Acadia.
The first step you’ll want to do is to cut strips of leather at about 1” width. For these particular drawers the length of the strips should be at about 13.5”. If you have a leather strap cutter, set the cutter to 1” width. This tool will make it much easier to do, but it isn’t necessary. You’ll get by fine if you have a long enough ruler with a metal edge. If you’re not using a strap cutter make sure that you make your cuts on a cutting mat or some surface that you’re ok with cutting on.
Next, measure about an inch from each end of the strips and make a mark. This will be your guide for where you’ll be punching a hole. If you don’t have a punch, you can try cutting a small + large enough for your screw/bolt to fit through and trim if necessary.
At this point you’re pretty much done with the leather working process. Now all you’ll need to do is use your screws/bolts to attach to the drawers.
Some other things you could do:
With veg tan leather it’s quite common to dye or stain the leather. On another project for drawer pull handles I had stained the leather a tan color. You can purchase these dyes or stains at any of the above mentioned leather supply retailers.
You can also use a different screw or bolt to give the furniture a more modern and appealing look and feel. On the same previously mentioned drawer project we purchased brass colored spray paint and painted hex bolts (both purchased at a hardware store). The bolts were a little bit wider than the original screw holes so we had to drill the holes a tad bit wider.
Here’s an old picture of the example.
Thanks so much for taking the time to check this out. I hope this was and enjoyable and helpful read. If you have any questions please feel free to contact me. Have a great time!