Wraparound Lavatory Drawer
Make use of that lost space around the sink-bowl by transforming an old vanity into a bathroom base cabinet for your sink
I was converting an antique vanity into a base cabinet for a lavatory when my client said she wanted to preserve as much of the antique drawer as possible, maximizing its usable space. Here’s how I did it.
First, I transferred the curve of the sink-bowl cutout to the bottom of the drawer, then cut away the portion of the drawer that had to go to accommodate the sink.
The new drawer back and sides are composed of two layers of 1/4-in.-thick lauan plywood. One layer is 3/8 in. wider than the other, which accounts for the thickness of the drawer bottom. The outer layer is stapled from the side to the drawer’s bottom. The inner layer sits on top of the drawer bottom and is stapled from below so that the fasteners are perpendicular to one another.
Before affixing the curved layers to the drawer bottom, I used my homemade bending form to put some arc in them. I dunked the plywood in a rain barrel, then strapped the two layers to my 55-gal. oil-drum woodstove. The stove had a little tighter radius, so the spring-back was about perfect. I spread polyurethane glue between the plywood layers and held them together with a variety of clamps while the glue set up. I stained the new sides and drawer back to match the original, and we were good to go.
When my client and I originally discussed the project, we talked about using a hinged drawer front that would conceal a narrow band of storage space. I think this works better, and it provides about three times more storage space than a tilt-out.
Photos: Brian Campbell