Archive for the ‘tall cabinets’ Category

…how ’bout this

Blast From the Past Project!

Hannah-banana!See this little cutie-petutie?

She’s my #4 of 8 GREAT nieces!

Where has all that time gone—?

When she was 2or3’ish -and soon after her parents bought their 1st house- my niece/Goddaughter relinquished the task of making a little Princess room for her!

Since I can’t find any pictures of the room to share, you’ll have to imagine this—

Mind you, it was the smallest BR in the house so you can only do so much. . .

The room was painted Pinkof course!

We wrapped the room in a picket fence and hot glued some silk wild flowers around and behind some of the boards.  Among other details, a vintage light was hung, and I re-worked a few pieces of vintage furniture.  THIS furniture.

I found the sweetest potential of a bed in a thrift store during a half price sale, $10  $5!  Sorry, no pictures from when I bought it (’02 or ’03), but you can see what I did to it below.  A simple shabby chic paint job, and an upholstery job with over-sized welting!  The same cabbage rose fabric and some lace also made a matching duvet, pillow sham, bed skirt, and drapes!  

a bed for Hannah!

This was the French Empire dresser I shabby chic’d for her

—that later made it’s way back to me for THIS other project!

Hannah's French Empire dresser

I had a Dresser, but I needed a Bookcase!I had a dresser, but I needed a Bookcase!

This was one of my earlier postings,

and,  it~I  was lucky enough to be featured on many prominent blogs for it!  Which put me in front of many of you!  My people who GET me!  ; D


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whatever, she’s country-cottage-y cool!

This whole project started with a door picked off the curb.  A turn-of-the-century …. 4-paneled door.  Caked with layers of paint!

I decided it would become a tall, closed cabinet, and then I started shopping my stashes of “finds.”  And I pulled in all kinds of left-overs.

Cutting my door in half to get started!

I cut the door in half and started shaping the carcass.

I cut up-shaped-added all kinds of salvaged-REclaimed-flea market finds to play up the character & charm of the door!

the carcass--

I got busy building a pair of front doors.

BUT—3 steps forward—2 steps back!

The satanic red squirrels that I’ve been battling forEVER broke one of the doors over night—ughh.

*It took  l o n g e r  to repair that door than build BOTH originally.   :   

repairing/rebuilding one of the doors

When a small wine stash developed at the very top, adjustable shelving in the upper section . . . . .  .. . suddenly became two scalloped shelves!

design changes on the fly--

applying chicken wire--You can see I started painting—a soft pallet of white exterior and warmer gray interior.

To set the door hinges, I clamped the doors face to face, marking all 3 positions (top, middle, bottom) to both doors at once.  It’s the easiest way I know to make sure they’re all the same!

I hung the doors before applying the chicken wire.  I like 3/8″ chicken wire.  I laid it flat on the ground to paint it white, then applied it whole (uncut) to the inside flat of the first door—starting from the manufactured edge side.  I cut away the excess and then worked on the 2nd door—again, starting with the manufactured edge first.applying chicken wire--

covering the raw edges with a raffia ribbon

*I would have liked to router a rabbet and counter sink the wire, but the “fret-work” prohibited that.  So for this application I stapled it to the flat back of the door, cut it off as short as possible, and then covered the raw edges with raffia ribbon.

We’ve had gray skies again so it’s tough to get good pictures.  My options were in an upside-down work studio, outside-gray skies, or the fluorescent lighting of the antique mall.  I tried my best to correct it all in editing. . .

Isabelle-- Izzy!Hope you like Izzy,

I’ll just end this with pictures!


Isabelle-- Izzy!








Isabelle-- Izzy!

Isabelle-- Izzy!   -details

Isabelle-- Izzy!   -details









*Taken just before the raffia ribbon and trimming back the wire.

Isabelle-- Izzy!

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All those little kid’s cabinets I love to build

by the time they’re finish, seem so filled with personality

I like to Christen each with a

Proper Name!

These are just SOME I’ve built and sold-

Heirloom cabinets for Girls

Heirloom cabinets for Boys


I  building with reclaimed & salvaged materials & flea market finds!

So, you know I was recently REinspired … . to build another Armoire,

Cottage-y Cabinet.

Ensiola, meet your big sister Isabelle!

And here’s her reveal, but there’s more to the story . . . . tomorrow!


ISABELLE-- my cottage-y cabinet!

*See the finished project HERE.

I’m sharing this project with a few of my favorite linky parties!

PhotobucketFurniture Feature Fridays

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With the weather finally improving,

I’ve been able to ricochet around here dealing with items looong overdue for attention!  Especially removing the last of the Christmas/holiday decor buried in snow or just frozen in place.

STILL seeing holiday decor in January is okay, February—it looks a bit silly, but in March—it just looks ridiculous!  Ahhh– winter in the Midwest.

So I’m having a good breakfast

—cheesy omelet LOADed with a multi-pepper salsa & steamy hot pomegranate black tea with a couple of lemon poppy seed scones—

to fortify me for another physical day of work.

I DiD play some too yesterday!  I snagged some miscellaneous items  -that I could get to now-  and intended to alter and take to the antique mall

below are just a few.

a small chalkboard— need to decide on the appliques, sand & wax

a new little chalkboard

a smaller chalkboard— used to be stupid signage in cute packaging

a smaller little chalkboard

a mantle clock

a small mantle clock--

a small mirror—  might still hit with dark wax. . .

a small accent mirror--

closing in on the Cottage-y Cabinet!  YaY!

Work continues

(slowly but surely)

on the

Cottage-y Cabinet

and the only thing left to do is apply chicken wire to the doors and hang them!  YaY!








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TRY to work on a project

and things just keep going—sideways?

My cottage-y cabinet should have been finished days ago—BUT—

a hit and run by a satanic squirrel-Things weren’t going —WELL,
I seemed to lose my “mo-jo” mid-stream,
and a satanic squirrel gave a big Thumbs down to my project.

Initially, things were full steam ahead, but then I seemed to hit a wall and was stumbling and fumbling—and, thought it best to give this project some breathing room.  IT HAPPENS.

A couple mornings ago getting started for the day— I found my doors knocked over. Wtwhat?

I usually clean up each night before I quit—but I was tired (and lazy) and yeah, there were squirrel footprints in the debris revealing the bandit.  I picked the doors back up and got on with the day’s work.

Yesterday I was back on track, making good progress on many details, even creating a scalloped top shelf for the newest design change!  But you know, the Devil’s in the Details and I wanted to line up the scalloped shelf to a certain point in the door’s fret-work, so I propped & clamped them back in place.


I didn’t notice one door was   b r o k e n.  FABulous.  Beyond repair.  . . . So I bought a new pine board today to rip for at least one new stile, and discovered that

  1. Wood glue and pocket screw plugs ARE FOREVER, and
  2. Kreg pocket screws are INDESTRUCTIBLE apparently.

fingers crossedI couldn’t cut through those screws for anything with any metal blade in any saw in my arsenal.  Suffice it to say—it was NOT a good day, and I really hate these red squirrels.

Let me regain my “composure” and I’ll share the “repair”. . .


repairing/rebuilding one of the doors

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figuring out the door design--it's just propped togetherMy Cottage-y Cabinet needs doorsso that was yesterday’s project.

I had a door style in mind and pre-cut the pieces to prop & clamp in place.  That let me see if it’s really what I wanted. YES! Oh-and,

they’ll have chicken-wire too!

Did you figure out what I’m using in lieu of traditional fret-work?

The end brackets that hold a mirror on a dresser!

So here’s how I’m building the doors

the door parts of the style I  want to makeThe first order of business was to

mesh the face frame material to the fret-work pieces.

All of the parts are just propped and clamped together here, and the top rail is set behind the fret-work.


The doors are put together in a standard way but I did use a pocket screw jig for the joinery.  Everything was standard EXCEPT the   top rail and the fret-work.

Below is a door completedshowing it from  the back side, and with a general break down of the parts.

putting the doors together

To best explain how I overcame bringing two disparate parts together, this is how it looks complete –back and front– and then I’ll break it down.

bringing 2 disparate parts together

I joined the two parts together (the fret-work & top rail) with a HALF LAP JOINT.

examples of a HALF LAP JOINT


1st -I marked the FACE of each so I would cut the correct sides!

creating a HALF-LAP joint

2nd –I set the blade in the table saw to “whittle” away the desired depth.

I don’t have a dado set for the table saw, so a single blade goes much slower.  This is just 1 way to achieve the half lap. 

example of a mortise and tenon jointThe arms that I’m using as fret-work (that used to hold a mirror up on a dresser) had a mortise and tenon joint, so I chose to remove one side of the mortise and the slot that the tenon would have fit into.  Hope that makes sense to you.

Next, I reset the depth of the blade to cut the other “half” in the top rail.

Then I glued and clamped the two parts together.  You can also see the rails are over-sized so I could cut them down to an exact fit.

creating a HALF-LAP joint

creating the pocket screw holes

While that part was setting up I moved onto the rest of the door frame.

3rd -Beginning with creating the pocket screw holes in all of the rails.

Then I screwed the bottom and center rails to the stilesand finally, the set-up top rails (with attached fret-work).

And I glued and filled in the pocket holes with plugs for a clean finish.

the doors--back side with plugs, front finished side

Here’s a close up of those plugged pocket screw holes.

the plugged pocket screw holes

Andhere are the doors propped in place!  You can see I’ve applied crown molding and am playing with hardware.


well into construction--

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IEnsiola built this little girl’s armoire a few years back.  It sold quickly and shipped to Arkansas!

I was thinking I’d build another

  BIG girl sized

—but I was lead astray!  It happened while digging through my stashes for “parts.” . . . So the design has changed—a little!

This project started with a door the neighbor put on the curb for garbage.

A very NICE old 4-paneled door—NOT garbage!  I’m hopeful he’ll throw out a few more, he’s—remodeling.


So first—I cut the door in half.

*I see my line looks a little wonky—Ooops!

Cutting my door in half to get started!

~Because I wanted to make all the door hardware a part of the overall design—I couldn’t run it through the table saw.

~And because I was too lazy to secure a long board creating a fence, I followed a chalk line to make the cut free-hand.  My cut line is a little wonky in places  –oh, well-  it’ll be part of that “bespoke” look!  ; D

1I shaped the bottom of each side to look like feet.

2I laid them on the floor to work over it, and tacked strips to hold it upright.

3Then I played with the top valance I’d previously lopped off of the 90¢ dish hutch.  And I cut off part of its design to simplify it for this project.

4I ripped a 1 x 10 x 8 pine board into 2″ strips on the table saw to create the face frame and the stiles and rails of the doors.  Plus, I used some of them to both stabilize and make cleats for the top and bottom of the cabinet.

shaping the bottom of the cabinet

the bottom of the cabinet--with new apron and cleat in place

5With cleats nailed in place, I cut and installed the left and right sides of the face frame.  But- I made a design change and cut them short to add a rosette and bullnose strip at the top.

a design change--face frame and rosettes added






6The rosette.  Whenever I see cOOl and unusual rosettes for a good price    I buy them!  So I have quite a few in my stash, and the simplicity of this seemed like the best fit for my project!  I cut off  2″ from the left and right sides to preserve the natural caked-on painted ends.

rosettes for my cottagey cupboard

the former top of the map-luggage handled dresser7I uprighted the cabinet. It will stand about 6½ ft tall. The center will need a fixed shelf to make it all rigid/stable.  So I pulled out the former top of the map-luggage handled dresser. Great thickness, perfect balance, and it was left over material!

I needed to cut the top down to 23¾” —and might want to use the outside finished edges for something else so I needed to find the center and then cut it on the table saw.

◊ TIP.  Construction always means measuring and—fractions.  I thought you might like to know an easy way to figure things out quickly and acurately.

Take one bite at a time—the top was 34¼” wide and needed to be cut down to 23¾”.  Instead of driving yourself mad trying to subtract 23¾ from 34¼. . .

Divide the  30″ then 4″ then ¼”  then add them together!

15″  +  2″  +  ¹/8″  =  17¹/8″

After you find the center of the top and mark it off, measure 17¹/8″ from the center each way.  There’s your exact center piece of the top!  So easy right?

dividing your measurement / fractions

my cottage-y cabinet--coming together!I figured out the placement of the center shelf and cut cleats for each side to support it.

~Nailed in the cleats

~set my top in place.

~Part of the other shelves are in and I’ll talk about a couple of the design changes next time!

8Before I quit for the night, I cut the stiles and rails for the doors and propped them in place.  I also applied my fret-work pieces (the dark pieces) to see the general look!

Can you guess what they are?

Hint—they’re upside down and inside out!  Do you see it?

So far I’m $25 in —

what do ‘ya think?


Guess what the fret-work is!




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