Rolling Dress-Up Cart

My daughter, Chriselle, is really into dressing up. (And I mean, really! She wears costumes around the house and even insists on wearing them when we go out!) We found this Rolling Dress-Up Storage Cart on Ana-White.com. Something comparable for purchase would look like this and cost around $150+.

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We decided to go ahead and make two carts, one for Chriselle and one for a friend. We did do some modifications because we don’t like to spend money on the wood. We came across plenty of large pieces of 1/2” MDF in the scap section and some old wooden curtain rods and our in-laws attic, and ended up spending only $15 on wood alone…However, because we only used 1/2” we ended up spending more on the Kreg screws and smaller screws for coutersinking the hooks. So here it goes…

First, we followed the dimensions with the size of the pieces found on Ana-White.com with the exception of the height because I wanted to add a nice detail to the top edges to match Chriselle’s room. So after all the pieces were cut (I believe we cut the long pieces into 42” in length instead of 36”), I laid the wood down with the sides and the top in line so I could trace the detail using a paper stencil that I freehanded (just traced one side freehand and folded the paper in half to get both sides symmetrical):

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I was able to cut 2 backing pieces out of one 12×36 piece to save wood

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After I jigsawed all of the top edging pieces, we drilled all of our Kreg holes and then we put the bottom pieces together

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And then we put the top shelf on and the back edge with the cutout details. The picture below also shows my husband sealing the edges of the MDF with joint compound for priming and painting . This time we used oil based primer because my husband did some research on how to make a nicer finish when using MDF. We also used wood filler for all the Kreg holes and used the filler to cover up an uneven edges.

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After prepping/sanding everything, we added the wooden rod (countersunk the screw so the outside looks flush) and we put it up pretty close to the top so the hangers would be harder for the kids to take off (as requested by my friend since she knew her daughter might keep taking the hangers off). Before we painted, we put the rolling casters on. Then we primed the carts with 3 layers (making sure to sand in-between each layer) and we also used 2 coats of paint (also lightly sanding with a fine grit paper in-between).  I painted Chriselle’s cart with the same antique white that we used on her dollhouse. We tried using leftover pink paint for the second cart but it was an eggshell finish and it was getting scratched too easily so we had to buy a semi-gloss paint.

Then we bought some cheap hooks from Ikea to use for hanging jewelry. I didn’t want anything sticking out on the sides because Chriselle had a bad experience with falling on hooks while shopping, so I found hooks that weren’t sharp (but took more work because we had to countersink the screws and fill them with wood filler since the hooks were on the inside). Then we put a full-length mirror on the side because a dress-up cart wouldn’t be complete without one! (For the mirror, we used a glass cutter to cut to size). Here’s what the final product looks like!

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