A Simple Modern Desk

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Dimensions: 
48" wide x 24" deep x 30" high
Dimensions: 

2 sets of 15″ drawer slides (as low as $3 each, depending on the quality, strength and features)
24″ x 48″ Project Panel (available at Lowes or Home Depot) OR 1 piece of 3/4″ MDF cut at 24″ x 48″ (about $30 for an entire sheet, you only need 1/4 of a sheet)
6 – 1×3 Boards (about $1.50 each)
4 - 1×4 Boards (about $3 each)
Sanded plywood 1/4″ plywood - about 1/4 of a sheet (about $15 per sheet)
1 1/4″ Nails
2″ Nails

Common Materials: 
2 inch screws
2 inch finish nails
1 1/4 inch pocket hole screws
wood glue
wood filler
120 grit sandpaper
primer
paint
paint brush
Tools: 
measuring tape
square
hearing protection
drill
circular saw
table saw
nailer
sander
Cut List: 

A) 12 – 1×3 @ 29 1/4″ (Center of the Legs)
B) 4 - 1×3 @ 25 1/2″ (Front and Back Trim for Legs, Outside Only)
C) 4 – 1×4 @ 25 1/2″ (Side Trim for Legs, Outside Only)
D) 2 - 1×4 @ 22 1/2″ (Side Aprons)
E) 1 - 1×4 @ 48″ (Back Apron)
F) 2 – 1×4 @ 6″ (Front Aprons)
G) Project board 24″ x 48″ OR 3/4″ MDF cut at 24″ x 48″ (this would be 1/4 of a sheet)
H) 1 – 1×4 @ 46 1/2″ (Back of Drawer Framing)
I) 2 – 1×4 @ 14 1/4″ (Sides and Middle of Drawer Framing)
Drawers
J) 4 – 1×3 @ 16 3/4″ (Drawer sides)
K) 4 – 1×3 @ 15 1/8″ (Drawer front and back)
L) 2 – 1/4″ Plywood cut at 16 3/4″ X 16 5/8″ (bottom of drawers)
M) 2 – 1×4 @ 18″ (Drawer Faces)

Skill Level: 
Estimated Cost: 
Style: 
General Instructions: 

Cut all your boards first and always use 2″ nails and glue unless otherwise directed. Work on a clean level surface. Square your project after each step. Most of all, have fun and work safe!

Step 1

Inner Legs. Build all four legs be first using the 1 1/4″ nails to nail two of boards A together, flat edges facing, keeping all outside edges flush. Then use the 2″ nails to nail another board A to the first 2 boards A, as shown in the diagram above. Use glue and keep outside edges flush on all sides.

Step 2

Leg Trim. Begin by adding board B to the leg from A, as shown above. Keep outside and bottom edges flush. Use glue and nail.
Then, nail in place board C, fastening to all four of the sandwiched 1×3 from steps 1 and 2. Your completed leg should look like the above diagram.
As you are building all four legs, make note taht the legs are not build the same for each corner. This is shown below.

Summary: 

Featuring double doors and built from a standard 1/4 sheet of MDF as a desktop, this simple plan will give you a sturdy modern parson style desk.

Step 3

Building all 4 Desk Legs. Keep in mind that the 1×3 trim, or board B, will trim out the front and back of the desk, and the 1×4 trim, boards C, will trim out the sides. The diagram above illustrates this.

Step 4

Apron Sides. Add the side aprons, D, to the top, nailing into boards A as shown above. The overall width of the table is 24″. Keep board D flush with the outside edge of the center of the legs (boards A).

Step 5

Add E to the back. Make sure you nail into D from step 4 (the side apron) and boards A (the inner legs). This is shown above.

Step 6

Front Apron. As shown above, nail F in place. Make sure you nail into both the side apron and the center of the legs, boards A. This is shown above.

Step 7

Tabletop. Add the project board or 3/4″ MDF tabletop, G, to the top, keeping outside edges flush. Make sure you nail into all the side aprons, back apron, and leg pieces.

Step 8

Drawer Housing. Add H and I as shown above. Make sure you add a screw at the front of the middle board I, screwing through the tabletop into the top edge of I. Cross nail and use lots of glue – these boards are going to be supporting the drawers. This is very important – make sure you add H and I exactly square. If the drawer frame is not square the drawer will not slide.

Step 9

Step 9 Instructions: 

Drawers. Nail through the drawer sides, J, into the drawer fronts and backs, K. This is shown above. Make sure you take a square of the drawer. See the HOW-TO section on how to check for square. Also make sure you cut your plywood perfectly square. This is very important. Your drawers will not slide if they are not square. Add the plywood, L, to the bottom of the drawers. Use the 1 1/4″ nails and glue to nail the plywood to the bottom of the drawers.

Step 10

Drawer Faces. Add the faces of the drawer as shown above. Notice how on the inside of the drawers the overhang of the face is 7/8″ and on the outsides only 1/2″. The best way to accurately attach the face is to attach the drawers to the slides and insert the drawers into the drawer frame. Then position the face on the drawer so that it fits the opening on the aprong. Then add a couple of 1 1/4″ nails to the face. Then take the drawer out and nail through the inside of the drawer into the face.

Step 11

Optional Drawer Dividers. You can also add 1x2s as dividers built into the drawers. I suggest using a 1×2 to create a space for pens and pencils, and perhaps a second divider for small items like tacks and paper clips.

Finishing Instructions

Preparation Instructions: 
Fill holes with putty and sand with coarse sand paper. Sand well, but keep outside edges sharp and square. Then sand with medium grain sandpaper. Paint the desk as desired. To get the shiny laquer look, use a high gloss laquer and add coats until the desired finish is acheived.

How to Build a Vanity Mirror

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1 – 24″ x 36″ Mirror
Mirror clips with 3/4″ screws to match
1 – 1×8 @ 28 1/2″
1 – 1×6 @ 28 1/2″
1 – 1×3 @ 8 feet
2 – 1×2 @ 8 feet
Heavy duty picture hanging kit
1 1/4″ Screws or nails and glue

Common Materials: 
wood glue
wood filler
120 grit sandpaper
primer
wood conditioner
paint
paint brush
Tools: 
measuring tape
square
pencil
safety glasses
hearing protection
drill
circular saw
sander
Cut List: 

Cut List

1 – 1×8 @ 28 1/2″
1 – 1×6 @ 28 1/2″
2 – 1×3 @ 35″
2 – 1×2 @ 48″
2 – 1×2 @ 25 1/2″
Optional Shelf

1 – 1×4 @ 28 1/2″ (Shelf)
2 – 1×4 @ 6 1/2″ (Shelf Supports – cut out at an angle)
Shelf hooks

Project Type: 
Skill Level: 
Estimated Cost: 
Style: 

Step 1

Build the Mirror Frame

Lay your 1x3s, 1×6 and 1×8 down and arrange for square. If you have a Kreg Jig™, screw the 1x3s to the 1×8 and 1×6. Lay the long 1x2s on top, to the outside, and screw and glue with 1 1/4″ screws. Adjust for square.

Step 2

Summary: 

How to fancy up a builder grade mirror. Completed mirror can be mounted on any wall. Shown in a custom vanity hutch.

Step 3

Mirror

Add the mirror to the back of the frame with the mirror clips. You can also glue the mirror in place. Also add the heavy duty picture hanging kit. Hang use the picture hanging kit and a screw into a stud in the wall or with an appropriately weighted drywall anchor system.

Step 4

I kind of built myself into a corner on this one.  Apologies in advance for the poorly lit photo.

Many years ago, we built this hutch on the bathroom vanity in the master bath to claim some vertical storage space, and I just could not figure out exactly how to get the right mirror put in the right place.

So our master bath sat mirrorless for about half a decade.

Sad, huh?

It's not that I didn't want to put a mirror up (and yes, we did buy a cheapo mirror and lean it up against the wall), I just wasn't quite sure how.  There is so little clearance behind the sink, most frames wouldn't fit, and the opening is non standard, so most off the shelf mirrors wouldn't work anyway.  We could have a mirror custom made and framed, but that can get quite spendy.  We could have had a mirror custom cut and glued in place, but still, the edges would never be perfect and I've  never been a fan of gluing mirrors to walls.    We considered hanging an oval shaped mirror in the center, but the lighting in the hutch left a utility hole in the wall that I promised the Ram would be covered by the mirror when I convinced him we needed the recessed lighting in the hutch.  See it up in the upper right corner?

So here is the really sad part.

Last Sunday, I made breakfast, started cleaning house as I always do on Sundays, starting with the bathrooms.  While cleaning the master bath, I just decided, today's the day.  Took some measurements and headed out to the garage, screwed a few boards together, slapped some trim on leftover from my mom's bed, attached a mirror to the back with mirror clips . . . and in about twenty minutes . . . yes, twenty minutes . . .

Built a mirror . . .

 

That fits perfect in the hutch (you can see, we've got tons more work to do in this bathroom as well).

Twenty minutes and some scrap boards.

 

 

And I could have enjoyed this every morning for the past five years.

 

 

How many funny faces did we miss out on?

The truth is it may have taken me less time to build the mirror than to scrub the tub, but it has taken me years to figure out just how to build the mirror so it would be easy to install, fit just right, be inexpensive, and look just right.  I want to thank you for being a part of our little community, because I know without any doubts, that you have made me better at what I do.  Had I attempted this mirror just a few years ago, I am certain it would not have come out as well. And I do love my new mirror so, so thank you!

And now I can share that knowledge with others.  If you need a mirror, I hope you build yours today. With this simple plan, a standard mirror and some mirror clips, you can beautify your bath this very afternoon.  I am going to give instructions on how I built my mirror, but you should take my plan and fit it to your needs.  I would love to see someone add coat hooks and a little key shelf under the mirror - or even over it.

All you would need to do different than my plan is add a 1x4 shelf.  Use 1x4 scraps to make the shelf supports and add some hooks.

Wire Basket Bath Storage Tower

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Dimensions: 
Dimensions:16″ wide x 30″ tall x 15 1/2″ deep
Dimensions: 

2 – Wire Baskets, measuring 9″ wide x 8″ tall x 12″ deep (as shown)
3 – 2×2 @ 8 feet long
1 – 1×12 @ 4 feet long
1 – 1×3 @ 8 feet long
1 – 1×2 @ 2 feet long
2 1/2″ Screws or finish nails
2″ Screws or finish nails
1 1/4″ Screws or finish nails
wood glue, wood filler and finishing supplies

Tools: 
measuring tape
square
pencil
safety glasses
hearing protection
drill
circular saw
sander
level
countersink drill bit
Cut List: 

4 – 2×2 @ 29 1/4″ (Legs)
4 – 1×3 @ 11 1/2″ (Side Trim for shelves – Measure to fit the width of your 1x12s)
2 – 1×12 @ 11″ (Shelves)
2 – 1×3 @ 11″ (Back Trim for Shelves)
4 – 2×2 @ 11″ (Width Trim)
3 – 2×2 @ 11 1/2″ (Top Trim – Measure to fit the width of your 1x12s)
1 – 1×12 @ 16″ (Top Shelf)
1 – 1×2 @ 16″ (Back, Top)
1 – 1×3 @ 16, (Front, Top)

Project Type: 
Room: 
Skill Level: 
Estimated Cost: 
Style: 

Step 1

Attach Shelf Side Trim to Legs
Measure and mark the location of the shelf side trim on the insides of the legs. Predrill holes and attach with 2 1/2″ screws or finish nails and glue. Build two. Shelf side trim is flush to the inside.

Step 2

Shelves
Measure and mark the shelf side trim 1″ from the top edge. This is the top edge of your shelves. Attach shelves with 2″ screws and glue or 1 1/4″ pocket hole screws and glue.

Summary: 

A little storage tower perfect for a couple of wire baskets or folded towels.

Step 3

Back Trim
Attach the back trim flush with the sides as you did the side trim.

Step 4

Width Trim
The shelf trim is flush to the top, the top trim flush to the top. Attach with 2 1/2″ screws or finish nails and glue.

Step 5

Top Support/Trim
Attach the top support/trim as shown above. Center the support. You will use these boards to screw the tops in place.

Step 6

Top Shelf
Screw through the supports/top trim with 2″ screws and glue to attach top shelf.

Step 7

Front and Back of Top Shelf
Finish the top shelf with the 1×2 and 1×3, 1×2 to the back so your piece will sit flush to the wall. Use 2″ screws and glue.

Finishing Instructions

Preparation Instructions: 
Fill all holes with wood filler and let dry. Apply a second coat if necessary. Sand with 120 grit sandpaper in the direction of the wood grain. Vacuum and wipe clean with a damp cloth. Prime and paint as desired.

pottery-barn-caleb-wire-2Plan By:Ana White

One of my favorite trends of the moment is wire baskets for storage. High quality woven baskets can just be so expensive and often less durable and more difficult to clean. This simple storage tower can be used with or without wire baskets to add precious storage space and countertop space to even the tiniest of bathrooms. Use throughout the home for storage - think potatos and onions, socks and underwear, or even favorite books beside your bed.

Shown with a Spectrum small wire basket, available at most stores for about $10 and a homemade fabric liner. Also available is a medium sized basket that is slightly wider. Simply add a few inches to the width of you project to accommodate the larger baskets.

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