Monday, June 11, 2012

Ikea RAST hack: Greek Key with a zinc twist

A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away (well, OK, it wasn’t that long ago and it was in Ikea), there was a simple pine cabinet named RAST.

rast-chest-of--drawers 2
He was a shy and unassuming cabinet, a lot like his friends LACK and HEMNES and BILLY and MALM. They all hung out in their flat packs together, playing poker and drinking root beer floats and wishing that one day, they would get unpacked and become something super spectacular. Like these lucky RAST cousins:

rast hacksTop row: Kelly at refresheddesigns, Jacob via Hodge:Podge | Middle row: Livet Hemma, Nancy at Marcus Design, Barbara at Hodge:Podge | Bottom row: Lindsay at Little House Blog, My O’verlays

RAST wasn’t sure what he wanted to be when he grew up, but he thought he might look rather fetching dressed up in zinc and brass with some Greek Key thrown in for good measure.

JAX from top
He wasn’t sure why he thought that, because he was Swedish, not Greek. Anyway, just when RAST was about to play his first ever official royal flush and win the poker pot, Kelly snapped him up and stuffed him into a little smart car and stuck him in her basement. Luckily, LACK came along to keep him company.

JAX closeup 1
RAST sat there in the basement till what felt like forever {because Kelly is really, really good at procrastinating}. And then, finally, his big day arrived – Kelly unpacked him and rearranged all his parts by following the very clear & concise instructions that came in his box.

ikea instructions
Kelly was confused. Did this mean that if you put RAST together with your hands behind your back you'll break him, but if use one hand he'll be OK? Her friend Rona thought it meant if you don't touch him, RAST will crack, but if you pat him reassuringly with one hand and lie him on a magic carpet, RAST will be content. And her friend Shelly thought it meant don't pee inside the RAST frame. {YES! That’s the one! Don’t pee!} Kelly didn’t have a magic carpet handy, but she did manage to get RAST put together with minimal injuries and only two-do-overs when she put some of his parts together backwards.

rast together JAX
After all that work, RAST looked and felt… well, kind of ordinary.

Nope, this really wasn’t doing it for him. He needed something more. He definitely wasn’t feeling stylin’ and sexy, being all naked and plain like that. But never fear, Kelly had a plan. First, she stained his outer bits with a dark walnut stain. But his pine really soaked it up, and he came out almost black. So she hunted through her stash of stains and came across a medium brown gel stain that she hoped would lighten him up a bit. It did, plus it gave him a nice satiny finish.

rast stained JAX
Not a bad start – at least he was feeling a bit less naked. Next, Kelly laid out his drawers on the floor {does that sound rude?} and drew lines on them 1” in from the edges all the way around.

Hey, come on, that tickles!

And then RAST couldn’t believe what happened next – Kelly used Krazy Glue to attach a Greek Key Double O’verlay to each of his drawers! It was like she’d read his Swedish mind and knew that he secretly wanted to be Greek!

overlays attached JAX
Next, Kelly covered his drawers with two coats of Zinnser Bin primer and two coats of black paint. He was feeling sexier already!

black drawers JAX
But that was just the beginning, because next it was time for some zincification. OMG! RAST thought he’d died and gone to heaven! Except the zincification process made him tickle, because there was a lot rubbing and pouncing and more rubbing and pouncing as Kelly layered on pewter Rub N Buff followed by silver metallic acrylic paint. But it was worth all the tickling, because now RAST was zincified, just like he’d dreamed.

JAX zinc close up
Then the cherry landed smack dab on top of the sundae – Kelly attached pretty brass pulls from
Lee Valley to RAST’s drawers. He thought they looked rather terrific, the way they contrasted against his handsome zinc self.

JAX top drawer
And with that, RAST’s makeover was complete and he was a boring naked pine cabinet no longer!

JAX with matt painting angle
RAST felt like a star, getting all fancied up for his photo shoot…

JAX with matt painting close

JAX with puff

JAX from side 2

JAX with wonderland 6
And now RAST is impossible to live with because he’s sexy and he knows it. To paraphrase KeriAnne at Thistlewood Farm, he thinks he’s all that and the kind of chips that come in a fancy bag made from recycled materials and call themselves potato thins. But that’s OK, because Kelly loves him anyway :-)

Project details

Click here for my tutorial on how to create faux zinc. I used Rub N Buff on RAST, but actually prefer the technique in my tutorial, which uses silver paint on its own. Also, I didn’t use clear paste wax on RAST.

Supplies & cost breakdown

  • 1 RAST three drawer cabinet from Ikea – $39.99
  • Zinsser Bin primer (I had tinted grey primer left over from another project) – $0
  • Black paint (I had Tremclad flat black paint, but would recommend latex) – $0
  • DecorArt Elegant Finish Metallic Paint in Shimmering Silver (already had it) – $0
  • Rub N Buff in pewter – $4.00
  • Paint brushes (already had) – $0
  • Pouncer brush (already had) – $0
  • Three lattice & bead brass drawer pulls from Lee Valley – $8.60 x 3 = $25.80
  • Krazy Glue (already had) – $0
  • Three Greek Key Double  O’verlays (generously provided by Cheryle & Danika for my RAST hack project. THANKS LADIES!) – $0
TOTAL COST: ~$70.00 + taxes

But ask RAST, and he’ll tell you he’s worth a million bucks :-)

JAX with wonderland 6 3

I’ll be linking up to various parties – be sure to check them out, there’s always lots of great inspiration :-)

ButtonThe Shabby NestFurniture Feature Fridays TDC Before and After


  1. OMG...hilarious post and RAST, you look marvelous dahling...simply marvelous!

    Well done Kelly!

  2. Glad you didn't pre on the Rast!! What a fabulous story-you ethnically mixed Rast looks amazing!!!!!

  3. RAST is gorgeous Kelly! Don't put him in front of a mirror though or he'll spend all day (and night) staring at himself and not socially interacting with you! ;-) Terrific post; you're such a great writer!!

  4. Too funny Kelly! I love how you mixed your metals ;-) He looks fabulous and I'm sure he's feeling fine!!

  5. i have to tell you the JAX is a work of art and i seriously mean that! it is truly amazing -- talk about style and originality! for the lack of any other word that would fit...WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOW!!!!! now that is putting your own "spin" on things for sure! hugs...

  6. Not only a super fabulous sexy makeover -- serious fancy chip fabulous -- but a highly entertaining and enjoyable post to go along with it!



  7. A totally amazing transformation!! So funny! Rast is an awesome blank slate...

  8. Seriously great job Kelly! I think going Greek suits him.

  9. Oh RAST you are so handsome:) Very entertaining Kelly & he does look so FAB!

  10. This is such an excellent tutorial! Rast looks AWESOME....little changes can make such a big difference and cost effective also! How long did the whole process take, including adding the overlay, prime, rub n buff etc? What type of glue did you use to attach the overlay and was the shipping fast ?

    1. Not counting drying time for glue & paint, it took about 8 hours in total (including assembling the Mr. RAST). I use Krazy Glue to attach the O'verlays, but you could probably use any glue that adheres to wood & plastic. Shipping the O'verlays was fast. Glad you like my RAST hack :-)


    2. That's a lot longer than I expected but I'm definitely going to try this out, the end result is just too nice to not give it a shot! Thanks Kelly!

    3. You could probably get it done faster - it took me about 2 hours to put the cabinet together, but you could probably do it in half the time (I'm slow!) The painting took a couple of hours and the zinc finish took 2 hours. Hmmm, that's 6 hours.... OK, maybe it only took me 6 hours :-) If you try your own RAST hack, let me know, I'd love to see it :-)


  11. Looks amazing! I have a RAST hack in my future too... but that darn procrastinating keeps getting in the way for me, too!

  12. Who would ever know that dashing dude was Rast in an earlier life? Great makeover, Kelly!

  13. No one would guess in a million years that started out a plain Ikea Rast! It is an unbelievable transformation.

  14. That looks absolutely AMAZING!! Love that zinc paint effect. I'm going to have to try that on something!

  15. Rast doesn't look so shy and unassuming now - he has really come out of his shell big time and looks amazing !!

  16. I love this *story* of of makeover of Rast and you are one very, very talented lady. Beautiful job Kelly.

  17. Wow Rast is looking super sexy! You did an awesome job with this makeover! I love the overlays!

  18. Wow it's amazing! I seriously cannot tell that it started out as a simple Rast. Love it! And Greg story telling, too funny

  19. Your Rast story is soooo wonderful and endearing! What a beautiful piece of furniture art you created! Like your incorporating the O'verlay detail to make it your own - and love the zinc finish!

  20. HI Kelly ..Thanks for dropping by! The table you liked @ Scout Market is a sewing machine stand!

  21. Wow! Rast is one handsome, awesome piece, and now looks like a million bucks!!! :)

    Thanks for stopping by my blog and leaving such a kind comment on my lakehouse post! Do come again!

  22. That looks incredible! You mam are a miracle worker!

  23. Kelly just stumbled upon your blog and I'm so impressed with this piece! It looks as it's worth big money now! I want to feature it at my blog! Would you like to guest post? I host a guest blogger every Friday, so let me know and shoot me an email. Otherwise, I'll dedicate a post to you and your lovely dresser! :-)
    Love, Olga
    P.S.: your newest follower of course!

  24. Rast looks amazing! You did an incredible job with zincifying it!

  25. Awesome transformation....and those directions made me laugh out loud! Good thing your friend was able to help you translate :)

    Have a blessed and wonderful day!

  26. Hee, hee .... that is one good story and I do love the happy ending.
    Fantastic transformation Kelly! -Brenda-

  27. Don't you hate when your furniture gets all high and mighty and too big for their britches?!

    Rast is a rock star but he needs to be taken down a few notches.

    As for the Ikea directions - I thought he wanted to do unspeakable things to poor little Rast (good thing you rescued him from the aisles of Ikea before that happened)!

  28. Kelly - This is so awesome, a complete and total transformation, hard to believe what you started with!!! So great! Karah

  29. Ahhh Kelly...too funny and too brilliant!!

  30. Holy cow, that is and amazing transformation! Awesome vision!

  31. Ooooo, your Rast Hack is genius! It is not even recognizable as an Ikea piece. FABulous :D

  32. Wow - love your reformed Rast Kelly! So chic - the zinc is the cherry on top! Those Over'lays are phenomenal!

  33. I found your RAST transformation post and that was the reason I started following your blog. I ve always come back and admired it a looot.I was so inspired by you that I went to Ikea and bought Rast. In a few days I ll finish my transformation... I didn t use Overlays,as I m from Romania. I can t wait to show it to you!!


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