Lining Drawers with Felt

Tips and warnings on a tricky custom touch. June 5, 2006

I have a client who wants felt lined drawers in a china hutch. How do you do this? Gluing in 10 cent sheets of felt just seems kind of tacky. Has anyone used the powder stuff that Rockler sells? I don't want to dumb-down the hutch with some bad looking drawers.

Forum Responses
(Cabinetmaking Forum)
From contributor C:
Felt should be available in roll stock at fabric stores, or I would suggest that you Google "felt" and see what you come up with.

From contributor F:
I don't know if this would work for what you want to do, but I used to glue crushed velvet onto panels. I would use 3M spray glue and attach the cloth to 1/8" ply. The ply was cut so the thickness of the cloth would make a snug fit when inserted. The bottom went in first then the two long sides, and finally the short sides with all the pieces being snug everything stayed in place. The bottom panel would also usually get an extra layer of thin padding under the material.

The problem is I was doing this with jewelry boxes; you would need to have a more secure method of attaching the panels if you go this route. Maybe hot melt glue? As for the flocking (powder stuff) I would do a sample for your client and let them decide before doing it. I'm not sure of how well it would hold up in that use either.

From contributor H:
I use the flocking that Woodcraft sells all the time and it makes a great lining for jewelry boxes. I have also used it in drawers for silver. I use a gun that I made and put it on under about 19 lbs of air pressure then it looks just like velvet.

From contributor D:
Hafele sells an anti tarnishing felt supposedly for silver. If you don't want to glue it down (which can be a mess) try some two sided tape

From contributor J:
I had a job a few years ago where the client requested felt lined drawers. What a nightmare! First we thought we would spray the drawer with adhesive and then just add the felt. How hard could it be? We got wrinkles galore. So we thought, "let's take a sheet of quarter or half inch plywood, cover it with pre-glued felt and then just lay in into the box and then add the felt to the sides. It was a no go.

By the time it was over, we knew more about lining drawers with felt, oxidizing properties of felt on silver flatware, sales people in fabric stores and a ton of other stuff that we definitely will never use again, than we ever wanted to know. We did find the right kind of felt and we found the right kind of felt with peel and stick backing but the results were always the same, lots of wrinkles in the wrong places. Our advice: stay away, stay far away. You will end up doing it as a favor and never being able to charge a fair price for what you go through to do the job right.