Desk Drawer Construction In 12 Steps

A desk drawer is one of the basic components in almost any desk. Making your own desk drawers is one way to not only save money, but also to create drawers that meet your own personal needs when it comes to storage space for your desk.

Before beginning your project, make sure that you have all of the tools needed and if possible, make all of your measurements before going to your home improvement center. If you do not have a saw needed for the project, most home improvement centers will happily help you out by cutting your lumber to the needed sizes and shape for your project.

Materials Needed
Tape Measure
Roller Guides
¼ inch Plywood
¾ inch Lumber
Finish Nails
Router or Sander
1 inch Wood Screws
1 ¼ inch Wood Screws
Drawer Handle

Step 1
Measure the opening for your drawer. You will want to make your drawer sides approximately one inch smaller than the opening for your drawer so that it will fit easily into the space. Also subtract the thickness of the wood you use for your drawer bottom.

Step 2

Cut your drawer side panels out of ½ inch plywood according to your measurements.

Step 3
Measure the interior space available for your drawer. As with the sides, make the depth of your drawer approximately one inch shorter than the available space.

Step 4

Measure the drawer opening space on the front of the desk, including both sides and top and bottom. This will be the starting measurement for your front and back panels. The total measurement will be the length of the drawer (across), minus one inch for the runners and the thickness of your side panels times two (½ inch plywood x 2 = 1 inch), the height of the front and back panels will be the same as your side panels.

Step 5
Attach side panels to front panels with finish nails, placing the front and back panels inside the side panels before nailing.

Step 6
Cut the bottom of the drawer from ¼ inch plywood.

Step 7
Attach drawer bottom to box created by front, back and side panels. Use one inch wood screws.

Step 8
Measure for front drawer panel. This panel will be 1 ½ inch larger all around than the attached front panel on the box you have just created.

Step 9
Cut front drawer panel from ¾ inch lumber. Use router and sander to smooth panel edges.

Step 10
Attach front drawer panel to drawer box with 1 ¼ inch wood screws from the inside of the box so that they will not be viewable from the outside of the desk.

Step 11
Attach drawer roller guides to bottom of drawer and inside drawer opening according to roller guide instructions.

Step 12
Attach a handle to the drawer.


Making your own desk drawer is a relatively simple project that can be completed in one short afternoon if you have all of the tools available to complete the job. Making your own wood drawers can be satisfying and save money in the long run.