There are three phases of Doing it Yourself. This is the story of those phases and me and a certain IKEA dresser that began life like this:

And needed to look a little more like a mashup of these.



(If you want to embark, I obeyed Bri’s awesome tutorial. Hers is the turquoise and gold number above, and I would have been on the ledge without her virtual instructions.)

So, let’s begin.

Doing It Yourself Phase One, also known as project hours 1-3: “D-I-Y’s are awesome! Home Depot is awesome! Glue is awesome! Look, Ty, I can totally saw wood myself!”

Phase Two, or project hours 4-6: D-I-WHINE. “I don’t want to go to Home Depot, or ACE Hardware, or Target one more time. Wood glue is a pain. Pleeeeease Ty will you saw these 54 pieces for me?”

Yeah. That’s how many wood pieces I needed to measure, cut at a 45 degree angle and then glue together, to make these greek keys. FIFTY FOUR. It is good that I didn’t figure that out until just now.

Phase Three, also known as project hours 7-15: D-I-WHY did I think this was a good idea again? At this point, I was scraping dry seeped-out wood glue off the fronts of my Greek Keys with a razor blade, then sanding all six of them at every joint. Then painting, and glossing, and cursing because I ran out of paint, super glue and patience. In the end I called my mother. She helped me decide how to place these babies on the dresser.

My dresser — the MALM from Ikea — has sunken spaces in between the drawer fronts so I had to modify the Greek Keys to work with that. They couldn’t be vertical. But . . . .

. . . and please know that this is a really bad picture . . .

. . . the next morning, when I woke up and saw this pretty dresser-turned-buffet in my dining room, I was so pleased with my D-I-Y that I started dreaming of what to do next.

Maybe, I thought, I should reupholster the dining room chairs myself.

For sure, I thought, I’m going to faux-marble those lamps.

Also: OMG! I should totally paint my armoire.

So that’s the fourth phase of D-I-Y that I forgot to mention: Success. It ensures that you will subject yourself to the previous three phases of torture once again. And so the cycle continues . . . and soon, maybe I’ll show you a better picture of the dresser/buffet and how it looks in the room. But first, I have lamps to paint and chairs to reupholster and oh, I gotta do something about the sea of rocks that lives outside the dining room walls. They are all windows, and I need a green lawn.

Dad? Come over?

***** Also, I should mention that the awesome Kittinger Greek Key dresser below  is $5,900 on 1st Dibs. Mine cost $155. The supplies were about $80. (Wood, four tubes super glue, two cans black spray paint, polyurethane gloss, wood glue, clamps, and a saw and mitre box.)  I found the IKEA dresser for $75 on Craigslist — a  new trick of mine. It’s called: If you buy IKEA furniture on Craigslist, someone else has already put it together.