Updating a File Cabinet with Fabric


I’m in the process of turning our dining room into a study room/home office.  Our girls are reaching the age when their school work requires more computer time & research.  No matter how good our filter seems to be working, we know there are always opportunities for unwanted images and sites to pop up.  In order to help monitor our girls’ computer time, we decided to move the computer up to the dining room on the main floor.  We really never use it as a dining room anyway, so no big loss there.

As I began moving stuff up from the basement, I took a good look at what we really NEED to have in the new area.  Whatever is in there will be visible from both our den and kitchen, so it needs to (hopefully) be organized and worth looking at.  Our basic black filing cabinet DOES keep our papers organized when I remember to actually file them.  However, it needed a little “oomph”.  You know what I’m sayin’?

Yeah. I know I’m not a photographer.  It’s all good.

So, I dug around in my fabric stash and came up with fabric left over from my dining room chair redo.  (That I haven’t told you about yet, so don’t bother looking for pics.  🙂 )  I still LOVE this fabric, so I thought I would see if I could cover the filing cabinet with it.  Here is a close up of the fabric.  I bought it at Hancock Fabric.

First, I removed the drawers from the cabinet and then removed the handles and lock from the doors.  They popped right out.  Easy peasy!

Then I placed my fabric face down on my work table.  I put the drawer face on top of the fabric and cut around it, leaving a little extra on all sides.  Mostly because I could not cut a straight line if my life depended on it.

Once that was done, I headed outside with the two drawers and fabric squares (that I did iron).  I already had a can of spray adhesive on hand from who knows what, so I grabbed that from the garage.

Didn’t know you were going to be subjected to this much incredible iPhone photography today, did you?  Sorry.  This is as good as it gets around here!

I just followed the directions on the can.  Basically, those directions are spray it on, wait about 1 minute and stick your fabric on.  I made sure to smooth out wrinkles and air bubbles quickly.  Then I used an X Acto knife to cut slits where the lock and handles needed to go and cut diagonally to each corner, so the fabric would lay flat when I pushed them back in.  **If your handles don’t want to snap back in, just trim the excess fabric completely off. **

Once the handles and lock were back in, I pulled out my little glue gun & glued down the excess around the sides and top.  (I’ll spare you more pics!)  Then I popped the drawers back in the cabinet.  And they didn’t work.  Yep, that’s how we roll.  There’s a REASON I named this blog “Do & Redo“, friends!  It seems that having an overlap of fabric on both the drawers was more than the cabinet could handle.  So I pulled the top drawer out and cut the bottom overlap of fabric completely off.  I grabbed my Modge Podge and foam brushed it under and across the bottom edge of the fabric to help keep it from pulling and fraying with use.  So, now we have THIS!  And I love it!

I had considered covering the rest of the filing cabinet, but I really like it the way it is.  We’ll see.  Things change on an hourly daily basis around here, so you never know.  Now to get all the files cleaned out and returned to their home!

What fun, easy things have you been up to?  Got any good tips for keeping the new office/study space organized and (hopefully) cute?  This is a house of mostly girls, after all.  Cute is a must!

I linked this project up at:



About doandredo

Hi! I'm Karen & this is my space to relate our remodel adventures. I'm the wife of a (very) patient man, mom to three beautiful teens and one spoiled pooch. My hubby has said (more than once) that even if we bought a brand new home, I'd be repainting it as soon as we moved in. He's right! So come on in & enjoy the fun!

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