Stunning IKEA Hacks that Make the Most of a Plain RAST Dresser

published Feb 28, 2022
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Credit: Meg Lowery

When it comes to snagging that perfect piece of furniture that’s just right for your space, nothing beats customizing an existing piece to make it your own. Enter the simple, dependable IKEA RAST dresser. IKEA RAST hacks are exploding on social media, with ideas ranging from a simple paint job to a total glam-up revamp. 

This 3-drawer pine dresser is packed with potential, so we’ve rounded up some of our favorite IKEA RAST hacks for you to browse. Prepare to be blown away by all the possibilities for revamping this basic dresser. Below, 20 ways to take this $50 dresser and turn it into something dazzling. Looking for more ideas? The Eket cabinet from IKEA is another piece that’s endlessly customizable.

Image credit: Clara Arnsberger

1. Elevated Bath Vanity

IKEA Hackers user Clara Arnsberger created a simple but stylish vanity for her bathroom using the Rast dresser and a most unlikely item: a salad bowl. With a coat of shiny, whimsical teal paint and stainless steel faucet and plumbing to match the gleaming salad bowl, the colorful vanity stands out in her bathroom. 

(Image credit: The Abundant Abode)

2. Nail head Nailed It

We’ve all got that one piece of furniture that doesn’t seem to match with anything because it’s adorned with nail heads. This simple Rast hack, by Renee from The Abundant Abode, adds a heavy dose of glam to the simple dresser. Renee adds nail heads in a criss-cross pattern and tops off the look with elegant drawer pulls. 


3. Campaign style

Campaign furniture is a classic, but it can be a struggle to find pieces that don’t break the bank. That’s where this RAST DIY comes in. Bloggers Mallory and Savannah of Classy Clutter used some paint and new hardware to transform this simple IKEA dresser into a timeless looking piece. This project is an excellent way to save money if you’re prone to changing your style preferences frequently, as you can still achieve the campaign look without committing to a splurge-worthy piece.

4. Mid-century look

Traditional mid-century modern dressers can cost a pretty penny! This IKEA RAST hack will allow you to bring the MCM look home for much, much less. Blogger Dena Holley-Stormer used wood stain to upgrade the trim of her dresser, added traditional tapered legs, and finished the look with some dazzling drawer pulls she purchased on Etsy.

Credit: Bliss Ranch

5. Vintage-look apothecary chest

It’s hard to believe that the chic apothecary chest you see here originated as a simple IKEA dresser. Blogger Bliss of Bliss Ranch got extra creative, adding pine wood trim to the existing dresser components. She also took the legs off of old dining chairs and, using them to hold up the piece, then painted the whole thing white. Glass door fronts finish the whole thing off.

Credit: Meg Lowery

6. Rattan-covered drawers

After oohing and ahhing over various rattan pieces, blogger Meg Lowery decided to make her own cane nightstand using a RAST dresser. Trim around the drawers complements the caning, and dainty black knobs match the black-painted frame.

Credit: Jen Crider

7. Faux luggage look

Blogger Jen Crider fell for a stunning suitcase dresser she saw online, but the piece sold out before she could get her hands on it. So she made her own! The finished product, which includes leather scraps and components from old suitcases, is perfectly vintage chic and bound to make a statement no matter where it’s placed.

Credit: Bethany Sy

8. Wood with bright accents

Blogger Bethany Sy transformed two RAST dressers to create punchy mid-century modern pieces with warm wood tones and pops of pink. The hourglass-shaped plywood accents she added to the drawer fronts function as minimalist drawer pulls, too.

Credit: Bethany Sy

9. Long mid-century modern dresser

Bethany Sy also transformed a set of three RAST dressers into one large piece—and it’s hard to tell at first glance that this isn’t your standard dresser. The dressers are in fact attached to one another, but if you anticipate wanting to move the chests around to style them individually down the line, you could still adapt the various components of this hack to best fit your space.

Credit: Pati

10. Antique-look filing cabinet

Blogger Pati of Style Squeeze took her toolbox and totally transformed this ordinary RAST piece into something with a vintage feel. Bin pulls, filing labels, and an antiqued wood finish complete the old-school-library vibe. Casters make the piece extra functional.

11. Wallpapered drawer fronts

For color and pattern, look no further and wallpaper. Blogger Ashley Wilson chose to stick a kid-friendly print to the front of this RAST dresser so it would suit her son’s room. She also added legs, and painted the frame of the dresser for some extra charm.

Credit: Amy

12. Farmhouse-style burlap

Burlap is another excellent option for upgrading the front of a RAST dresser. Blogger Amy of Canary Street Crafts created this shabby chic piece using burlap and some new knobs that pop against the pattern.

13. Bar cart redo

Who says you have to use the RAST as a traditional chest? Blogger Breighanne Eggert turned hers into a bar cart, complete with a towel bar and a built-in wine rack. Keep all of your entertaining essentials organized and looking stylish with this clever hack.

Credit: Doreen Cagno

14. Shaker-style trim

The shape of the RAST dresser makes it easy to add on additional details for a more elevated look. Blogger Doreen Cagno upgraded the various components of her dresser to make it more intricate, designing her own top, bottom, and trim for a Shaker-style feel. Bin pulls finish the look.

15. Built-in closet organization

A RAST dresser (or two!) can work wonders in a closet that needs a new storage solution. Blogger Brooke Cribbs made her own version of built-ins using the RAST. Adding a counter on top maximizes storage space, while shelves at the bottom neatly stow shoes. Looking for other closet organization ideas? We’ve got plenty here

16. Storage-rich desk

Need some extra storage where you work? The RAST can be a starting point for a DIY desk. Blogger Stacey Cartwright used hers at the end of her DIY desk, adding a long tabletop to make plenty of space to spread out.

Credit: Alicia

17. Faux cubbies

With a little craftiness, blogger Alicia of Thrifty and Chic created the illusion of a piece with nine different drawers. She used the RAST dresser to create her apothecary-like nightstand, carving faux “drawer” lines into the fronts. The placement of the new drawer pulls helps maintain the appearance of separate little cubbies.

Credit: Sara Davis

18. Glam mirrored fronts

Blogger Sara Davis was inspired to create her own version of an Anthropologie dresser she spotted online. Mirrored accents on the drawer fronts, coupled with turned legs, transform this plain piece into something glamorous. The mirrored fronts help give the illusion of more space, too.

19. Nautical Makeover

Perfect for a funky beach house vibe or for a little one’s nautical nursery, this hand-painted dresser by Ariane Schoenweisner (@Anonsultower on Instagram) is one of our favorite IKEA RAST hacks. 

20. Black and White Beauty

By combining bright white paint and sleek black knobs with the clean lines of the IKEA RAST dresser, Sam at Thomsen Living created a modern masterpiece. Spindle legs add height, making it the perfect bedside table.