Has anyone else been inspired by Ana White's building plans website? She's a DIY goddess. Never in a million years did I think I'd be capable of building furniture. Yet, Ana is an inspiration to DIY women across the world, with the message:
I'm not a trained carpenter.
I am a mom.
I am a girly girl.
I am what my brothers would call a chicken.
But I build furniture.
I use saws.
I use nailers.
Guess what? It's really not that difficult.
And if I can do it, so can you.
Doesn't she rock?! My first project was a toy shelf, which turned out slightly lopsided with caulk-filled gaps in it, but it's functional. Lessons learned: 1) MDF sucks to work with and 2) it's important to square your project.
My second project was a shorter version of the same shelf, with the intention of using as a shoe shelf. Not perfect, but there were definitely less gaps and I did remember to square my project this time so it didn't look like something out of a Dr. Seuss book.
My next building attempt was a copycat of Pottery Barn's Bedford desk system. I took everything I learned from my first builds, drew up the plans and built it in my head a hundred times before even buying the lumber (No nasty MDF this time). I was pretty dang meticulous and it really paid off. I invested in a new drill, which is my new little best friend. I took Ana's advice and purchased some clamps to act as extra sets of hands. And I relied heavily on this sander as well to make sure all my pieces were perfect. I'm not going to brag about the cheapo circular saw that I used, because it's mediocre to say the least and will be replaced with a more reliable saw someday.
Cost to built was around $200 (not including the paint). The hardware is probably half the cost. (Drawer pulls from Pottery Barn.)
Paint is Benjamin Moore's Satin Impervo (oil-based) in White Dove. This was back in May before I discovered Ace Cabinet and Trim paint that I used to paint my kitchen cabinets. The Impervo is nice, but it's oil based which equals looooooooooooong dry time and stiiiiiiiiiiiiiinky. Highly recommend the Ace paint:
I made my cabinets extra deep to fit our beast of a computer tower. If I had bought the PB desk, ours wouldn't have fit: