Back with Even More Repurposed Drawers!

Contributed by Emma Lavoie

With the completion of our inventory, we have even more drawers to share with you that were repurposed by friends of the Peabody!

Hundreds of old collection drawers were given away throughout the Peabody’s collection inventory and rehousing project. These drawers were then transformed into furniture, décor, art, trays, storage, organizers, and gifts.

Our past blogs featured many different and unique drawer projects and we loved seeing the creativity used in giving these old drawers a new purpose. You can check these projects out here and here.

The wooden drawers were a part of the original storage for the Peabody collections, housing over 600,000 artifacts. To learn more about the history of these drawers in the Peabody Institute and collection check out our blog, Behind the Photograph: Unpacking the Peabody Collection.

The following drawer features were contributed by friends of the Peabody both on and off Phillips Academy campus. First up are several painted drawers used for various décor purposes. A little paint and stain can go a long way in repurposing the look of a drawer.

Painted and stained drawers

This particular drawer is a charming holiday tray, painted and customized as a fun way to leave cookies and milk out for Santa. Don’t forget the carrot for Rudolph too!

Holiday tray created out of an original Peabody drawer

Some of our old drawers were transformed into incredible pieces of art by Jamie K. Gibbons, Head of Education at the Addison Gallery of American Art. Follow and support her work here!

Artwork by Jamie K. Gibbons, Addison Gallery of American Art

To commemorate the Peabody’s Inventory completion and thank donors, staff, and volunteers who played a role in the process, puzzle pieces were created from drawers by Get On Board – Signs and More as well as puzzle boxes by the Makerspace at the Oliver Wendell Holmes Library (OWHL) on Phillips Academy Andover campus.

Puzzle pieces and puzzle box made out of drawers

A huge thank you to all of those who have repurposed drawers and have shared their projects with us. If you’d like to feature your repurposed drawer project, please email your photos to Emma Lavoie, Peabody Administrative Assistant, at

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