New Plan

Is it a surprise to anyone that I’ve had to change my plans for this week? Anyone?

Yeah, I didn’t think  so.

We got our garage door replaced yesterday. I had kind of forgotten that it would come unpainted, but remembered at the last minute and scrambled to go get the paint I needed. Guess what I’m working on now?

It isn’t my craft room.

I spent a chunk of my day yesterdday getting some much needed running done for BG and to get the paint. The rest was spent up and down a ladder getting everything caulked up. Which was so not fun as we found that some of the trim around this door isn’t in great shape as it has a few too many soft spots. It really probably needs to be replaced, but we aren’t doing that at this point.

It most likely isn’t the only trim on the house in such a state, which is laughable as we were told, repeatedly, while the house was being built that this type of trim wouldn’t rot even if you left it unpainted. I want to do bodily harm to the people that built my house over all the things that are messed up with it. The trim issue is only one tiny reason I feel that way. Seeing this yesterday is just one more drop in the ocean of frustrations we’ve had with our builder, even 17 years later.

I had planned to get a few things done in my craft room this week before the true chaos of recital hits toward the end, but this door is taking a whole lot more time that I anticipated. Because it has wood trim on the steel panels, I have to caulk every single edge and seam, and there are a lot, before I can paint. Just the bit I did yesterday, going up and down the ladder, has me feeling it today. I really don’t want to have to attempt to haul a thousand pounds of costumes and shoes around while even my teeth ache, so I’m only going to finish up the caulking today and call it done until after recital.

As much of a pain as it is and with the extra work, I’m glad to finally have the new door, even unpainted. I hated seeing that gouge every time I stepped outside. Unfortunately, now that we know what a major pain it is to do anything with these doors, I’m going to be a nervous wreck every time the neighbor has his yard mowed.

Craft Room Project: Only 1 And A Half Cabinets To Go!

I am SO close to being done with the build phase of these cabinets. There is only one more that I have to put together (I already have all the pieces cut), one that is already built that I need to modify to add a center divider and some shelves (that would be the 1/2), and I have 4 drawers to build (which I didn’t add to my count) and these are essentially built.

Of course, I still have doors to work on, but those are going to be a breeze in comparison to the cabinets themselves. There are also the “faces” I have to add to the sides of the cabinets that will show to the room, but I’ve been keeping those parts in the door grouping because they are pretty much the same thing.

I was working on my second to last cabinet when I goofed on my measurement of the back panel and cut it too short. Of course, I had exactly the right amount of that panel material left to finish these cabinets and that goof means I now have to run out and pick up one more sheet. It also meant I couldn’t get that last one finished today.

Even with the goof, I feel really good about what I got accomplished today.

There are only a couple of days left in this week that I’m going to have uninterrupted to work and next week won’t see much getting done at all because it is recital week and I have so many things I have to do to help BG get ready for that. As soon as recital is over, though, it should be smooth sailing for a while as I have no more commitments until MCG and her family come in June.

Craft Room Project: Cabinets Almost There

I’m down to 4 cabinets and 1 modification on a finished cabinet and the cabinets will be built.

That is if I don’t change anything. Again. For the 100th time.

3 Of The Upper Cabinets Done
3 Of The Upper Cabinets Done

Two of those final 4 cabinets are just like the one on the left and all of those are a major change. That area was just supposed to have a narrow, tall cabinet that left most of that wall space open, but the shorter counter there made me not love that idea. I changed it up to 3 normal sized hanging cabinets instead.

The cabinet to the left and the one in the corner to the right will all get hung and line up with the top of that tall, central cabinet. All the remaining cabinets I have to build will also be hung.

The other two I have left to build go on either side of the tall cabinet on the back wall. I’m still waffling on those two because they will be smaller than I’d originally planned. Either that or they won’t be the same, which they were supposed to be. They were originally supposed to be open shelves without doors, then I changed it to doors, but with glass to mimic the white cabinet I reworked. But if they are going to be a different size from each other or on the really small side, then I may need to do something different. I think those will be my last ones to build, so I have a little bit more time to figure it out.

Jewelry Bench Cabinet
Jewelry Bench Cabinet

The beast above has gone through so many changes and shifts from the beginning of this project that I’ve lost count. This was supposed to be the cabinet that forced me to move my switches. After a lot of thought and deciding that I really liked how open this is feeling so far, I sort of cut this one in half and changed the interior design.

Sadly, this removes some drawer space, but it made so many other things easier. Not that this sucker was easy, but it was not quite the nightmare that it was going to be. Having built this, I’m so glad I made the changes I did because I don’t think I could have actually moved the thing if I’d built it as designed. This is already insanely heavy, I can’t imagine how bad it would have been if it had been up to the height of the hanging cabinets on the rest of the walls.

One cool thing about this change is it gives me an additional counter space that will get stained. The top isn’t attached yet because I can’t do that until after it’s stained and the cabinet is painted. It will also have the decorative side added on the side that faces the room, but again, that is at the paint/door stage.

There are two more dividers that are needed to finish off my drawing pad/canvas storage section on the right, but those should just take a minute to add, but I didn’t have any more of that material.

The modification is to the other lower cabinet under my jewelry bench. I’m adding a center wall and some shelves to one side, similar to the beast. I figured if I had to give up some space from that cabinet, I needed to make better use of the space I had. That most likely will have to wait until I’m ready to pull everything out right before painting since I need it out from underneath the countertop.

I think I’m starting to see a slight glow on the horizon of this project.

 

Craft Room Project: Last Materials Run

Over the weekend, I got all the last of the plywood I had on hand cut, which had me with about half of the pieces for all my remaining cabinets ready to go. That made room for what should be my final round of materials. At least for cabinets. Those all got bought yesterday.

Of course, knowing me, I forgot something or slightly miscalculated so that will probably be another small run here and there, but this should have been the last big purchase. Which is a relief. I won’t lie, this hasn’t been a cheap project, even with me doing all the building myself. It has been made even more expensive because the cost of any kind of lumber is through the roof right now.

Normally a decent grade piece of plywood like I’m using, is about half of what it currently costs. Between supply chain issues and spikes in the lumber industry because of fires, everything has gone up exponentially over the last year or so. Just from the start of this project to now, heck, from my previous run a little over a week ago until yesterday’s run, that same piece of plywood has gone up by about 5$ a sheet.

It figures that I’d pick probably the most expensive time in history to build a cabinet heavy room in my house. So, even though I’ve tried to take advantage of sales or discount coupons or even cash back rewards from our credit cards to save on this, it hasn’t been fun to see those big receipts at the end of each trip.

It is a relief to know that I’m on the less expensive side of this project finally. I’m also thrilled to know that I’m so close to having the cabinets done. Even more thrilled to know that I won’t have to sit down and redesign or rework layouts or anything like that ever again, because of course I’ve changed those plans yet again.

I realized the other day that I’m grateful I didn’t opt to have someone build all those cabinets for me because I’d have either ended up with something I really wasn’t happy about, or would have been paying out the nose for all the changes and modifications I’ve gone through. Or, I would have frustrated my contractor enough to quit mid-job. I know I frustrate myself enough that I want to quit sometimes.

Craft Room Project: Initial Counter Fitting

This isn’t all of them in place as I need to cut one of them (that’s still sitting on my table) and I still need it until all the cabinets are built as I need that extra height to work with my table saw. Anyway…

Initial Fitting For Counter Tops
Initial Fitting For Counter Tops

HOLY CRAP!! This looks absolutely amazing! Looking at this and seeing it in almost usable form is mind boggling that I did this.

After Hubby helped me put these in place, I was able to see how accurate I got on my cabinet height. Unless there is something I didn’t account for, this should match up perfectly with my table, which was the plan.

I do have a couple of problems I’m going to have to fix, though those are due to imperfections in the work the contractors did on the walls, which aren’t straight. The longer counter along the back wall needs to be shaved down a tiny bit as it isn’t sitting quite square and I have too big of a gap in the back on one side. Shaving it down a bit will allow it to fit a bit better, but I’m still going to have some gap as that wall is slightly bowed just to the right of the single outlet. I won’t know how bad that gap is going to stay until I can get that cut/sanded down a bit.

There is a similar gap along the right wall where the jewelry bench counter is. That one should be taken care of when I add my peg board between the recessed area and the counter. That wraps around the corner and partly along the back wall, so it may also take care of the worst of that gap as well.

All of those are relatively minor issues. I figured I would most likely need to do some trim around the back edge of the counter because I really didn’t expect the contractors to have actually gotten those walls straight. I’m going with looking on the positive side of this and accepting that it could have been monstrously worse and had those corners completely out of square to the point I’d have to try and cut a counter at a funky angle to get it to fit.

Even with those issues, I’m enormously pleased with how this looks. My vision for the space is really beginning to show and it is exactly how I’d hoped it would be.

Today is going to be a non-build day as I decided to take the day to finally do my running to multiple stores to attempt to get all my door trim as none of them have enough in stock for me to get it all in one place. That and I rand down my screw stock to having enough for maybe one more cabinet, if I’m really lucky, so I needed to make another supply run anyway.

My body needs the break today as well. I feel like I’ve spent days moving furniture around. In a way, that’s pretty accurate as those cabinets and counters are as heavy as some big pieces of furniture.

 

Craft Room Project: Base Cabinets Are Done!

I have yet again changed my plans.

This time, I decided that my existing cabinet layout wasn’t quite what I was liking, so I made an adjustment. The final cabinet on what I’m calling my sewing wall is now smaller than planed so I could put my table closer and not completely block the opening into the rest of the basement. In the photo below, you can see the final location of the table. Before, it was almost entirely in front of that opening. That would be fine for temporary, but I really didn’t like blocking that much all the time because it just looked too crowded.

Final Base Cabinets On Sewing Wall
Final Base Cabinets On Sewing Wall

I considered removing that cabinet entirely, but it put my table too close to my jewelry bench counter for comfort. I sort of split the difference and just went narrower instead. It still works for what I had planned for it’s primary purpose, which is to hold my sewing machine when not in use.

This change does mean that I’m going to have to cut down one of my counters, which I don’t love, but know won’t be a huge issue as I’ve gotten the hang of using my saw.

Finishing that smaller cabinet was a milestone of this project, though. I’m now done with all my base cabinets!

All Base Cabinets Built
All Base Cabinets Built

The one really large cabinet I had planned is also under consideration. Again because I think it might just make that space feel too claustrophobic. I haven’t settled on what exactly I want to do there, but I have some ideas that might allow me to use the piece of counter I have to cut off. I have to see exactly how far I have to cut that down before I know for sure. That is also one of the last cabinets I’d planned to build, so it isn’t a priority at the moment.

I want to lay out the counters just to make sure everything still looks the way I expect it to before I move on to the next phase, but I should be able to start on building the upper cabinets.

I’m inching along closer to getting this done!

Craft Room Project: Ready for Cabinets Phase 2

Another materials run is done along with a major cleaning and rearranging of space.

I was forced to rearrange my space so that BG can get access to her dance floor again. With recital only a few weeks away, she is going to need it for practice. The shift causes me to lose close to half my space that I’d been working in. Most of that was for storing materials, but a portion was where I had my miter saw set up.

The new arrangement is a lot more crowded, which may start to get interesting as I work on the remaining base cabinets. But, it should only need to stay this way for a few weeks and I should be able to reclaim the dance floor area after recital again.

After looking at what I have left on the cabinets, I think I have a total of 4 phases for building and one for doors and drawer faces. The first phase is done. This second phase I’m starting now should finish up the rest of the base cabinets.

Based on materials, I’m going to say the remaining upper cabinets and shelves will be a phase and the final full cabinet will be the last. Looking at sizes and numbers, I don’t see how I can do the materials for both that cabinet and all the upper cabinets at once, so I’m going to have to split those.

The materials for the doors and drawer faces won’t be nearly as large as I already have the bulk of those.

If I look at how long it took me to do the first phase, about a week, and apply it to the other phases, I may be looking at another 3 or 4 weeks of cabinet building. That said, there are a whole lot of things on my calendar over those next 3 or 4 weeks, so that may be an ambitious estimate.

I am trying to set a goal of having the majority of this entire project done by mid June as MCG and her family will be in town towards the end of June. Ideally, I would have the cabinets all done, painted and installed, the counters stained and installed and the floor in. The closet layout isn’t important and neither is expanding the dance floor to fill that room, but I do want the worst of the mess done and gone and the space ready to use by the time they get here.

Again, that may be a really ambitious goal, but I’m going to work my ass of to try and hit it.

Craft Room Project: Part 1 Back Wall Lower Cabinets Done

The last several days have been really productive. And things are starting to take shape.

All of the lower cabinets on the back wall are mostly done. I still have to build the drawers for that section. The shelves also need to get installed, but that part doesn’t happen until they get mounted on the wall at the very end.

There are some gaps that will get taken care of at install with some trim, but they are all fitting really nicely. The one place I’m struggling with is the slightly raised area on the floor. It may be that the underlayment will help to level that out a bit, but I won’t know until I get to that part.

I’m also seeing a couple of places where the wall isn’t completely straight. That may force me to do a small piece of trim around my counter after it is installed, but I’d figured that might be an issue so it was in the “might need” side of my plans.

I have all the pieces for the first upper cabinet cut, but I realized when I went to get started building it that I was no where near confident enough to attempt to do all the holes for the shelf pins freehand. I did some research and found a tool that allows you do to those with a hard to screw up guide, but now I’m waiting for it to show up before I can finish that one.

Really, once that cabinet is built, I’ll be ready to start the next section. My current plan is to see what materials I have that will work on any lower cabinets on other walls and see if I can use some of that extra up before I do a materials list for the next phase. I’m also probably going to work on building the drawers, so that piece can get done. Most likely, I won’t work on the faces until I’m working on all the doors, but this will get that section mostly completed.

Pretty much every day after I’m done for the day, I’ll just stand there looking at it all in shock that I’ve actually built all of this all on my own.

Craft Room Project: 2 Cabinets Done!

Today was productive and I’m really pleased with these so far.

I have 2 cabinets as done as they can get before they are painted and mounted to the walls. Both have pieces that don’t get attached until they are on the wall, so those have to wait. I have the pieces cut for, them, though.

I’m just a little bit floored. These are all straight. They sit level. All the edges are within a light sanding tolerance and even that is only in a couple of places. I half expected these to be slightly off kilter as I had some issues with the drawers for the recessed space, but that isn’t the case with these. Possibly because I’m working with larger pieces and those not completely straight boards can be pulled into square a little easier than you could on the smaller drawers.

Whatever it is, seeing these go together so nicely is making me absolutely giddy.

Another trip to get the pieces for the cabinet I forgot to plan for is in order before I can start the next piece. The plan is to run out either tonight or tomorrow morning, so hopefully it doesn’t delay me too much.

Do you see how utterly nasty my walls are at the moment? Everything in my basement is covered in sawdust. I have a feeling I’ll be cleaning sawdust off of everything for years to come. I’m not even going to show you how horrible the recessed area looks right now.

Craft Room Project: Start of Cabinets

It wouldn’t be me if I didn’t change things up, yet again. I don’t think I can get through this project without at least another dozen changes.

This time, it’s really just changing my order/process going forward. The first plan when I was getting ready to start the cabinets was to paint all the pieces first. I decided that there was too much material that would end up in the scrap pile for me to do that, so I shifted my plans to cut first, then paint.

Today I decided I still didn’t like that idea, so I’m changing it again. A big reason for that is I really wasn’t thrilled with the fact that I thought I was ready to paint, cleaned up all the dust, only to realize I’d forgotten to cut a piece. Then it was that I realized I still needed to sand everything, after cleaning up a second time.

So I said forget it. The cutting, sanding and building process will be a non-stop mess and I really don’t want to screw up the paint on the finished cabinets. That and the cabinets have to be set on the underlayment that covers the entire floor before I can mount them and I really don’t want a paint mess on that.

Instead, I plan to get everything built and ready to install before I do any painting. That way I can just paint all the cabinets at once. It will be a little harder because it means doing some edging, but I think it will be the better option overall.

There is a very real possibility as well that my messier parts will have to move to the garage soon as some of these get built because I’m going to run out of space to work.

Between the changes, a few mistakes I had to fix (I’m frustrating the hell out of myself with my scatter brain that makes me forget things I really shouldn’t), all I managed to get accomplished today was the base corner cabinet. Even that isn’t completely done as I still have the wall side to build, but I have to work that around the access opening and I ran out of time today.

For a really simple start to the cabinets, this turned out pretty decent so far. The fact that it sits square has me giddy. I’ll have  to make a supply run before I can get started tomorrow because I somehow forgot even more than I thought I had yesterday.

 

It’s Been A Day

Really, it would be more accurate to say it has been several days of “one of those days.”

I think I mentioned before that we’d had water come in one of the bedrooms from the roof. I finally got around to calling insurance about that and set that ball into motion. That was prompted because I needed to call them about ANOTHER issue.

That issue is thanks to the landscaper/mower that our neighbor hired to mow his lawn. Guy somehow managed to mow over the access for the water shut off, something that is covered by what looks like a mini manhole cover. A nice solid chunk of metal. Instead of it damaging the mower, the mower apparently managed to shattered that sucker.

The result was pieces went flying and one managed to slam into our garage door, leaving about a 3 1/2 inch gouge behind.

Garage Door Gouge
Garage Door Gouge

We have custom doors because our builder screwed up when framing the foundation and made the opening on one of them too small and a standard door wouldn’t fit. This is already a problem for replacement or fixing, but it turns out that these doors aren’t made any more so we can’t even get a replacement panel. These are metal with a foam core, so it isn’t like you can just patch that. We have to replace the entire door.

The custom design adds a massive cost (something we only paid a small difference for originally because the initial problem was the builder’s fault) and we are looking at a couple thousand dollar repair. All because some jackwad ran a riding mower over a metal manhole cover instead of going around it.

While there is a chance our insurance can get either the mower’s or the neighbor’s insurance to pay for this, I’m not optimistic. I doubt the mower has any kind of insurance (doesn’t look like he was from a company) and the neighbor is apparently having financial problems and is why he is finally bothering to fix up a property he has been renting out for the last 10 or so years. It’s probably going to come down to everyone putting the blame on someone else and no one taking responsibility. And that’s why our insurance company is involved.

I’m immensely grateful that neither of my kids were heading out to the car at the time or that no little kids were outside playing at the time because someone could have been killed. That isn’t an exaggeration. That chunk of metal is really heavy and could have done so much more than damaging our garage door. I’m shocked that the mower had the power to throw it as hard as it did.

I’m pretty sure it narrowly missed slamming into the back window of the kid’s car. Granted, that probably would have been a cheaper fix.

I have to talk to the adjuster and see what they are willing to cover or not on this. Considering we still have the issue with the roof to deal with and the cost for the rest of my materials for my basement, this is going to be a VERY costly year. Seems par for the course for us as our air conditioner went out just a few weeks after we had our windows replaced a couple of years ago.

Joys of home ownership.

On the craft room front. I have my stain color down. FINALLY!! The color in the photo is WAY off. This is a much cooler gray than what it looks like here.

Final Stain Color Sample
Final Stain Color Sample

The larger piece in the above photo is a floor piece. The smaller piece is my sample. I still have to do a top coat, but I’ll work that one out later. I think I’m going with a clear poly, so it shouldn’t change it much. Even if it does a little, it should still work.

Today, I started cutting the pieces for the lower, back wall cabinets.

Set Up For Cutting Cabinet Materials
Set Up For Cutting Cabinet Materials

Trying to get these much larger pieces cut has been a bit of a pain, but I pulled it off with a little help on the biggest pieces. So far, I have the pieces cut for the corner cabinet and the first shelving section.

I realized when cutting the pieces for the shelf that I somehow missed adding the pieces for the second section to my layout, so I goofed that one. Thankfully, they are all smaller pieces, so I’m just going to get a smaller sheet or two of plywood for those instead of dealing with another huge one.

For now, I’m going to work on painting what I have cut and getting those put together before I move on to the next segment.

Craft Room Project: The Pain of Stain

I’ve lost count of the number of test samples I’ve done of various different processes, formulas and layers using combos of 5 different stain colors trying to get the stain color I want for my counters. This is just a portion of the ones I’ve done so far trying to get a color that works with the sample block of my flooring in the lower left of the photo.

And I’ve decided I’m going in the wrong direction. All of these are too dark and allow too much of the yellow tones in the wood to come through and I just don’t like any of them.

So I have now added 2 different stain colors and have started the whole process over again.

Wood stain is really kind of horrible. First, you don’t have these nice swatches spread out in rainbow fashion for you to choose from like you do with paint. With wood stain, that is almost an impossible thing to do because different types of wood take stain differently. Even the same type of wood can present a wide range of colors using the same stain because wood isn’t uniform and stain soaks in, showing the various shades and lines of the grain, instead of just sitting on top like paint.

The other really obnoxious part about stain? Or one of them anyway. Manufacturers only provide the smaller containers of stain in the most basic, common colors. The slightly different or less common colors only come in the larger cans, which aren’t cheap at all, so buying a bunch to run tests to get the right color can end up costing a decent chunk of change and leave you with a bunch of stain you will never end up using making it not only expensive, but wasteful as well.

That doesn’t even go into all the other pieces to the puzzle, like how the color will change when you add your top coat or varnish to the mix or how obnoxious clean up is depending on the type of stain. Oh, and the smell. Holy hell, the smell!! I’ve already made my vent fan installation well worth the expense just because of the stain alone.

So, as much as I really wanted to get started on the paint-and-wait dance with my cabinets, I’m still messing with stain today. The good news is, my first test of my new colors seems to look like it is going in the direction I want it to, much better than all the other colors I’ve messed with so far combined. Fingers and toes crossed that it dries as nicely as it went on and that my sealant doesn’t change up the color too much.

 

Craft Room Project: Random Thoughts

I got my first round of cabinet materials hauled home today. I’m still messing with the stain color because I cannot seem to even get close to the color I want, but I’ll need to put it all aside to start the paint-and-wait dance on the new stuff tomorrow.

While I was waiting on one of my test coats to dry, I got to thinking about the future value of this space. Now, I have zero intention of leaving this house until someone hauls my immobile carcass out the door or when I simply cannot safely handle the steps anymore (and I’ve seriously thought about solutions to that specific problem as well), but it is still something I think about and try to take into consideration when I do any projects that change the house. We’ve done a couple of things over the years that will somewhat limit options for future owners, so adding something so different has been a little uncomfortable for me.

This project is such a specialized space, someone looking to buy this house may be put off by a space that doesn’t work for their needs, which may limit potential interest. It dawned on me today, though, that with a little work, someone could turn that space into a second kitchen, an elaborate bar area, or take it a step further and turn the basement into an apartment/mother-in-law’s space kind of thing.

Basically, I just realized that even though it is a rather specialized space that only a kindred spirit would light up over having, it is still a space that non-kindreds could find appealing if they are willing to do a little work. The realization that I may not be limiting that pool as much as I thought makes me feel a little bit better about making such a unique addition to the house.

 

 

Craft Room Project: Materials Planning Headache

This last week has been one long, drawn out headache.

I have had to make so many tweaks and adjustments to my plans to make everything work and then have to turn around and do something different again, because I realize I either did it wrong or that I was doing my damnedest to make something that should be easy, excruciatingly hard. All just to get the designs on paper so I could work up a materials list.

After several more days of putting together the impossible puzzle of each single piece of cabinet into a layout that could tell me how much of each type of material I needed, I managed to put together a materials list. It was MASSIVE.

I was so stressed and discouraged because I had zero clue how I was going to get all of it home. After talking with Hubby and doing even more shifting of plans and measuring vehicles, researching delivery options or renting another truck, we finally had a plan that would work.

We head out to get the first round (because of course there was no way all I needed was at a single store or was able to get in a single trip), and the very first item on my list crumbled all my plans to dust.

This is an example of plans on paper vs. reality are very different. The idea of a 4 foot by 8 foot sheet of 3/4 inch plywood isn’t all that daunting. Reality is that it is massive and heavy and unwieldy in the extreme. Especially if you aren’t a body builder. Even with plans to have the store do some initial cuts to make it possible for me to get it all home didn’t seem very realistic and I immediately dreaded the thought of having to work with it all on my own or even with a little help from Hubby was too much.

We got a handful of other things on my list, but abandoned those pieces so I could go home and try and rework my plans. Again.

We’d seen some smaller “project panel” sheets of the same material and thought I’d be able to go that route. By the time I finished replanning all the pieces, I realized that was yet another impossible option. I’d need more than what was available in the entire city and it would cost more than double what I’d spend if I’d just gotten the bigger sheets. Considering this is already expensive, I really wasn’t willing to go there.

I’m now back to the original plan, but still not sure how I’m going to be able to pull it all off. Those sheets are crazy heavy and I need 15 of those suckers.

The current plan is to go back on Monday when it isn’t crazy busy so I don’t feel bad about monopolizing an employee’s time to cut all those sheets down and either rent a truck or arrange to have them delivered. I haven’t a clue where I’m going to put it all when it gets here or how exactly I’m going to manage to get them all cut down to the sizes and pieces I need.

I’m so frustrated that all of this has taken so long and that I’m STILL not starting on these cabinets. Especially because the bulk of this will still have to be painted before I can do anything.

Craft Room Project: Finalizing Cabinet Layouts

The next couple of days are going to be full of this. My brain is going to be screaming by the time I’m done with all the math. Hopefully, I don’t botch it too much.

I do expect this to take several days because every time I work on a new area, I realize I did something wrong on a previous area I thought I’d finished so I have to go back and fix things.

Part of the problem is that I’m using my kitchen cabinets as a template, but my craft room space is just enough different, I have to make some adjustments that keep tripping me up. A big difference is my counter height. I’m more table height in my craft room than a standard kitchen counter, which is a few inches taller, giving me even more math.

Have I mentioned that math and I aren’t friends? My brain simply refuses to handle the really basic stuff even though I can blow through more complicated equations. It is ALWAYS the little, easy things that my brain stutters on.

The other part is trying to work these plans out for the full 3 dimensional layout, which in some cases, is really hard to try and pull off on 2 dimensional graph paper. The worst are the two places I have corner designs that wrap across two walls. Those plans are going to be a blast to figure out. There is a reason they are on the bottom of my stack.

Working on this has also brought to my attention that the order I’d planned on doing things is probably going to need to be switched up a little bit. I have a few places where cabinets and/or shelves attach at the counter top. That means my counters need to be finished before I can install those pieces. Which in turn means I need to get my stain figured out sooner rather than later.

It’s all the various different interlocking pieces that are tripping me up the most. It’s like putting together a 3D puzzle. Except I have to actually design all the puzzle pieces before I can start putting them together and all I have to work from is a flat image of what it is supposed to look like when it is done.

And this is just the design stage. I then have to take ALL those pieces and try to put together a supply list that gives me a total amount of each separate piece for every single shelf, cabinet, and door, all in one lump.

I can feel my brain screaming already.

Craft Room Project: White Cabinet New Doors

The white cabinet is one step away from done. All that is left is staining the new surface, but that is most likely getting done when I do all the rest of the counters. Maybe. I’m still debating using this as my stain test, but I still haven’t settled on my color yet.

White Cabinet: New Doors and Drawer Face On
White Cabinet: New Doors and Drawer Face On

This looks a thousand times better than it did before. The lighting is crap and I think the camera on my phone has a layer of dust on it from being in the middle of the sawdust blizzard in the basement, but you can see how much better it looks than it did (below).

White Cabinet: Before New Doors and Paint
White Cabinet: Before New Doors and Paint

This is such a pretty cabinet now!

Craft Room Project: Finished Drawer Face & Access Door

I haven’t posted a room update in a couple of days because very little of what I’ve gotten done has been photo worthy. Lots of little things like more painting and touch ups. I’ve also been kind of taking bites out of it between trying desperately to get caught up on other things I’ve been neglecting around here.

Finally, I had something worth sharing today.

I got the drawer face done for the white cabinet. I’m not posting any full cabinet photos until it is completely done, but this is the new face.

White Cabinet: New Drawer Face
White Cabinet: New Drawer Face

I absolutely LOVE the look of this. I did discover that the face itself isn’t deep enough for my pulls, so I’m modifying my future drawer designs a smidge to fix that issue. For this piece, I did a little side fix that isn’t seen because of how this attaches to the drawer itself.

The other piece I finished off was the door to the access opening.

New Access Opening Door
New Access Opening Door

I was really frustrated with this because the opening itself is not square AT ALL which made getting this to fit almost impossible. It covers the opening. It opens and closes fine, but there is a bit of a gap at the top that I’ll need a latch of some sort to hold it completely closed. There is trim that shows on the left near the top, but none at all on the bottom left. I think this opening was off by a good quarter of an inch, which is a lot when you are talking about needing to put a door over it. So much for the contractor guy bragging on his 90 degree angles and things being square because this is not.

After the cat decided to inspect my paint job and leave her review in the wet paint, I decided that the basement is off limits to them until this project is completely done. I came up with a temporary door, since my plastic wasn’t doing the job. This is ugly as hell, but works beautifully because I even put hinges on it. It allowed me to leave the plastic on the upper portion to help keep the dust and mess in the basement. The cat STILL tries to paw at this to try and get it open every night, but she’s not getting past this!

Temporary Basement Door
Temporary Basement Door

I am just 2 doors away from being ready to start my cabinets. Those are the two new bottom doors for the white cabinet. Now that I have the method down after doing the access door, these should be done in maybe 2 days and only that long because they have to be glued and clamped for a portion of that and paint touch ups are tedious with the paint and wait process.

But… only 2 and I can go get my materials and start building in the room itself!

Craft Room Project: Glass Door Inner Trim & Drawer Design

I didn’t have a ton of time to work today as I have other things that I need to do. I’m seeing that I’m slacking in other areas because I’m so focused on getting this project done. I’m going to need to keep an eye on that.

The glass doors got their inner trim and some more touch ups and sanding. These should be ready for a final paint by tomorrow.

White Cabinet: Glass Door Inner Trim
White Cabinet: Glass Door Inner Trim

Since I have to paint at least one more panel before I can start on the lower doors and I have a couple of touch ups on the rest of the cabinet, more painting will most likely be my focus tomorrow.

One thing I got done today that has been driving me up a wall because I hadn’t been able to figure out how to pull it off is the design for my drawer faces. I wanted them to have the same look and feel as the doors, but the outer frame pieces for the doors are way too wide to use on a drawer. I needed a compromise and I think I’ve come up with one.

Drawer Face Design
Drawer Face Design

Obviously the above isn’t a full face, but it gives you the idea. The entire outer edge would be like the bottom layout.

It is such a relief to have that part figured out. It does mean more materials than I’d originally planned since the panels need to be backed in the same way I did my drawers for the recessed area, but I’m happy with the sturdiness and the look.

I’ve got a couple more stain samples drying, but I’m still not loving any of them yet.

Craft Room Project: Glass Door Replacements Started

Today was fun.

Kind of.

Not really.

Okay, it wasn’t really that bad. Just tedious and frustrating and tiring and messy.

The goal for today was to start on the replacement doors for the white cabinet. I decided to do the upper ones that have glass instead of a center panel first, just to get a feel for process. It really was a good place to start because I discovered all kinds of issues.

My router works great for doing the main groove that the center panels will sit it, but the bit that is supposed to cut the narrow piece that sits inside that groove is not consistent. At all. I ended up trying to pull off the same thing with my table saw.

That was a whole other ball of WAY too much. I had to take the normal guard off to be able to get my fence close enough to my blade for those really close, shallow cuts. This tripped my uncomfortable button, but I managed to work through it even though I was staring at a naked blade the entire time. It takes a lot of passes, but it is consistent. I’m not certain I love either process, but the table saw is the best one.

I got most of the parts for the new doors that will have the glass on them glued together. I still have to add the inside trim since there won’t be a center panel, but I need more of my clamps first (seeing a pattern here that means I really probably need to consider getting several more) and I will have to do some touch ups on the paint before I can attach the glass.

While it doesn’t look like I got much done today, I did learn a lot and I got confirmation that I was brilliant when I decided paint was the way to go because it is going to cover SO many mistakes and imperfections.

By the time I was done today, I was shedding a cloud of sawdust with every step, movement, or twitch and my whole body is yelling at me that I did too much today. I do feel pretty good about what I got done, though.

Craft Room Project: White Cabinet New Surface Attached

Apparently the Universe agreed that I needed a break. This is all I’m getting done today since it took all the clamps I needed to start on the doors.

I did manage to get another panel sanded and prepped for paint. Since I was already dragging today, that turned my arms to jelly by the time I was done.

I’m not going to complain about the little progress because the new surface is attached. I had to strip off the plasticy veneer to get this glued down because I really didn’t think it would hold if I left that in place. This white cabinet is one more step closer to done.

Doors tomorrow. Finally!

 

Craft Room Project: White Cabinet New Surface & Panel

Today felt like I hopped from project to project, which is kind of true.

I did replace the backing on the upper portion of my white cabinet with my beadboard panels. I’m SO glad I opted to do that. Not only does it look 10 times better, but it is also a whole lot sturdier. The panels really don’t have much give to them, but that cardboard stuff did, which made this just a hair wiggly. Now, that sucker doesn’t move. And yes, there was a splinter of wood that popped out under that top, but I’ve got that fixed.

White Cabinet: New Panels On Upper Section
White Cabinet: New Panels On Upper Section

There was also the never ending task of painting materials. Since I had to use a couple of my panels, I had to start painting more so I can still do the doors. I also somehow missed the removable shelf for the white cabinet when I was painting yesterday, so that got painted today as well.

The new surface for the cabinet is now in the process of being built. I still have a few things to do to it before I can attach it to the base, but most of it is done. This most likely won’t get stained until I’m ready to stain the counters, which means the cabinet may not get completely put together until then either. I haven’t decided yet.

White Cabinet: New Surface Under Construction
White Cabinet: New Surface Under Construction

I’m probably going to need to moderate how much I get done over the next couple of days. I was just dragging all day today and feeling bit worn out. I’m pushing so hard to get this whole project done, but I don’t want to get impatient and mess something up. Or, wear myself down to the point of burn out.

I know that once I start on the cabinets, things are going to feel like they start to fly because there will be huge visual changes each day. Right now, there isn’t a lot visually and there probably won’t be for a little while, or at least after I get these few doors done, because there is going to need to be a whole lot of painting prep of materials that will need to be done and that isn’t helping much.

Considering this project started the week after Thanksgiving and we are now in the middle of March, I really want to be done so I can start using the space.

Just to give you an example of how worn out my brain is, I posted today’s color post as day 4 instead of the 3 it should have been. I really can count. I promise.