Entertainment Center #1: Built in Entertainment Center

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Blog entry by Luke posted 01-18-2011 07:08 AM 18150 reads 0 times favorited 6 comments Add to Favorites Watch
no previous part Part 1 of Entertainment Center series Part 2: Wall Paneling and Mantel added »

I took it upon myself to get back into woodworking by building an entertainment center in a TV nook that was in our house. Previously I had done some bookshelves from New Yankee Workshop and they came out nice, but this by far has been the biggest project. There are somethings that I like about it, but somethings were a learning process.

I started the face frame by doing half-lap joints, with Thru-dowel pins holding it together. They came out nice, even though with paint you’d never be able to tell what I did, I thought it would be a great way to practice for future process. I used Particle board for the lower cabinet, trying to cut costs. ARGH, I hate that stuff, used Plywood for the top, because the Particleboard was too heavy, and a pain. I did the panels with Poplar, and custom bead molding in each of the panels, and the doors. Its still not done, we’re going to do some paneling in the house to match the entertainment center, so paint will come when all is done.

Had a blast working on it, but at the same time, it has taught me alot, and really stretched my patience.

6 comments so far

View RonPeters's profile


713 posts in 4165 days

#1 posted 01-18-2011 07:29 AM

Very nice! I have a space just about the same as yours. Hmmm, been thinking of ‘doing something’ with it. Wife wants a TV stand, but this really looks sweet!

-- “Once more unto the breach, dear friends...” Henry V - Act III, Scene I

View routahgirl's profile


12 posts in 3945 days

#2 posted 02-13-2011 04:49 AM

Nice! How deep is the recessed area? Love the lighting.

View Luke's profile


290 posts in 3972 days

#3 posted 02-13-2011 07:27 PM

Thanks for the compliments!

The cabinets are 24” deep (the depth of the niche) but when we hung the cabinets and base we just felt it was too deep for our LCD so we put a wall up at about 16” – 18” deep which is enough room to fit my TV with some front and back room. Worked out much better for what we wanted.

#4 posted 02-14-2011 06:11 AM

Beautiful work!!! I love the in cabinet lighting, nice touch!!!!


View NDdave's profile


1 post in 1365 days

#5 posted 03-07-2018 07:43 PM

Hi Luke.

This entertainment center looks great!

I actually moved into a townhome with a similar size “media niche” and was looking to build something similar. I was searching the internet for plans and came across your post…

If you have a detailed plan, would you mind sharing it? I have really just ventured into self projects as I am a new homeowner and certainly appreciate guidance when available.

Thanks in advance!

View Luke's profile


290 posts in 3972 days

#6 posted 03-09-2018 11:33 PM

Dave! I don’t have detailed plans for it, I just built it as it went along. It kept growing and growing…

In honesty, having been a DIY home improver/beginning woodworker during this project I would recommend coming up with an idea that you think you would like and making it happen. I made ALOT of mistakes on this project, and it went through so many variations and materials, under the white paint its a mish-mosh of styles, woods, and techniques.

Each one of them taught me something valuable that helped increase my skills. Its a bit daunting taking on a big project, but if you do it in bite sized chunks you can totally do it, and learn from the wins and losses of it.

Some of my losses: I primed the entire thing with old paint – and then had to scrape and strip the entire thing from that old paint.
I made it out of home depot poplar – for the same cost I could have gone to a proper lumber yard and made it out of walnut. (That would have saved me painting it!)

Some of my wins: I started out with a plastic tablesaw, and a router. I ended with an entire woodshop – because it took me that long to build.
I built my neighbors entertainment center essentially the same out of maple, for less than I built mine for. And he bought me some tools.
I did half laps, and drawbore pegs, even though I didn’t need to at all – but I learned how to do it.
What ever you end up doing, make sure you have fun along the way! Its so much better that way.

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