Bookcase/File cabinet combo

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Project by Tom Regnier posted 02-20-2016 05:40 PM 1404 views 5 times favorited 4 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I needed to make a file cabinet for our home office and decided to try and adapt the Stickley No 72 magazine cabinet I have in one of my books and made by Christopher Schwarz.
The piece ends up being a little deeper than most bookcases to accommodate the space needed for the file drawers. I really liked the look of the long plain sides and the strength of the fixed shelves. I debated over building one large bottom drawer vs. 2 split ones because I didn’t want the cabinet to possibly tip over with the weight of the files. As you can see I decided to play it safe and split them up.

I used mostly all poplar with some oak I had on hand for the legs. My first intention was that I would be painting the piece so poplar was a good option. When I completed the construction I decided to try and see if I could get a nice stain on it without any blotching and despite using a sealer it blotched just enough in a few spots that I was on to step 2…paint! I applied 1 light coat of a rusty red paint which allowed just a bit of the wood grain to show through. Then I applied a GF Gel stain overtop that took just enough of the grain and the paint color to create a colorful grain. Not the way I had planned things but in the end I think it came out pretty nice.
I included a photo that shows the progression of the finishes minus the blotching…poplar is so easy to work with but a bit of a challenge to stain well.
Thanks for looking!

4 comments so far

View pottz's profile


6383 posts in 1496 days

#1 posted 02-20-2016 08:45 PM

nice job on those tom I did something similar for my home office except I made the file cabinet separate from the upper bookcases so the shelves wernt so deep,great look on yours.

-- sawdust the bigger the pile the bigger my smile-larry,so cal.

View Roger's profile


21011 posts in 3316 days

#2 posted 02-21-2016 01:57 AM

That is fine fine.

-- Roger from KY. Work/Play/Travel Safe. Keep your dust collector fed. [email protected]

View RussJohnson's profile


57 posts in 2334 days

#3 posted 02-21-2016 03:26 AM

That stain is unreal.

View dnick's profile


986 posts in 2894 days

#4 posted 02-21-2016 07:19 AM

Really nice piece. A very clean look. Well done.

-- dnick, North Hollywood, Ca.

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