Family Room Built Ins

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Project by MrStyle posted 07-19-2018 03:03 PM 1462 views 2 times favorited 6 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Here is my latest finished woodworking project – and actually the third set of built-ins for our home. See my other projects if you want more…

Additional project shots as well as a few before and after’s are here
This was a big project for me that took just about a year and half to complete – admittedly there were stretches of a fair amount of procrastination that delayed the timeline but such is life of the amateur.

Phase 1
The project actually started with electrical work requiring me to add six recessed LED lights in our family room, move a couple of light switches that were going to be in the way of the shelves and relocate those light switches to the other side so they are available as you walk into the room.

Phase 2
Production and installation of the upper and lower cabinets as well as the installation of crown molding throughout the room. If you are going to install crown moulding you must watch Gary Katz and his This is Carpentry series on the subject- article from April 3rd 2015. Provides invaluable tips, tricks, tools and jigs that simplify the entire process.

Phase 3
Painting and more painting – ended up painting the entire first floor ceiling, trim and walls. We have a combination kitchen and family room –aka open concept, so there was no good place to naturally stop painting so – the entire first floor got done.

Phase 4
Finishing work – all the trim work, cabinet moulding (arches, face frames, arch keystones, drawer fronts and moulding, raised panel doors and door moulding. Also created the French cleat mantel from several home depot moulding options – I used 5 different molding profiles in various combinations to get the look we wanted.

Besides big box stores – there are a few specialty stores that helped with the more decorative aspects of the project.

Second Chance (Baltimore MD) is where we found the piece above the TV which is called a Boiserie for 100 bucks. It was from an old Baltimore home and we were told was from the early 1900’s. Not sure if that is true – but it is a good story so we are going with that. I had to remove much of the supporting structure and surrounding wood to properly size the piece and it is held in place by a French cleat system.
We also purchased six 12 foot long hardwood chair moulding or 4 dollars each that we used as column decorations.

Mouldings Inc ( Laurel MD) provided the arched molding called Architectural Flexible Moulding from Carter Millwork. Great product that was very easy to work with and since it is flexible turned out to be pretty easy to work and fit into the arches.

House Werks (Baltimore MD) is where we found the cast iron decorative pieces that adorn the base cabinet doors. The pieces are actually from wall scones and with a little wire brushing and spray paint the project was almost finished. The weight of those pieces caused the doors to hit the drywall too hard and would eventually cause problems – so this is when I learned about cabinet door restrictors. These prevent the doors from opening too far so I got two pair of Blum cabinet door restrictors from Rockler. They work great with the Liberty ½ overlay hinges from Home Depot.

New tools for this project where limited:
• Porter Cable 23 gauge pin nailer – great tool – made decrorate moulding much easier to finish
• Husky Digital Bevel Angle finder – couldn’t have made the arch trapezoid keystones without it.

Finally –and probably not least I would really love to thank my old dependable friends DAP caulk and paint. What can I say – amateur woodworker – expert caulker!

If you are reading all of this and are a professional cabinet maker- I would love to know how much you would charge for a project like this – so I can start talking to my wife about how we just saved so much money – we can now get me a jointer and planer !

6 comments so far

View Vindex's profile


113 posts in 2274 days

#1 posted 07-19-2018 03:21 PM

That is an absolutely gorgeous addition to your home! Very impressive!

View Underdog's profile


1906 posts in 3488 days

#2 posted 07-19-2018 04:14 PM

Great job!
I’ve been out of the estimation game for a while now, but that would dictate a premium charge for sure!
Upwards of $200 linear foot. Course with open cabinets the finishing costs go way up because you have to make all that look good by sanding and even coating. AND I’d charge by the square foot rather than linear foot. PLUS the moldings and carvings will add quite a bit more too.
I’m thinking more than $6K for this job. That would include delivery and installation as well.

-- Jim, Georgia, USA

View therealSteveN's profile


9981 posts in 2026 days

#3 posted 07-19-2018 06:14 PM

Well done, and I don’t like White painted wood, that can easily be changed though. Really liked the links to better see the journey. Love the cast decorative addition on the doors. I would never have come up with that, but it works well here.

From the distance I am seeing it from it looks flawless, so don’t talk about caulk, lol.

What kind of joinery was used? Wood used?

Thanks for posting.

-- Think safe, be safe

View woodbutcherbynight's profile


10889 posts in 3861 days

#4 posted 07-20-2018 12:28 AM

Impressive build. Very interesting all the places you found the piece to make it work.

-- Live to tell the stories, they sound better that way.

View ronstar's profile


739 posts in 5163 days

#5 posted 07-20-2018 11:45 AM

Very nice!

-- Ron, Northern Illinois

View MrStyle's profile


88 posts in 3182 days

#6 posted 07-23-2018 11:54 AM

absolutely gorgeous, looks flawless—these are the comments I like to hear ! Thanks :)

To answer a few questions about the woodworking side:

1. Several types of wood are in the project

  • Cabinet carcasses – sanded birch plywood from homedepot
  • faceframes -mostly pine, some poplar for the doors
  • doors – raised panels are MDF
  • drawer fronts – pine
The joinery is pretty simple
  • Drawers – pocket holes and a dado 1/2 drawer bottom.
  • Doors are tongue and grove following pretty much exactly what Gregory Paolini shows in this video A Raised Panel, Made Solely On the SawStop Table Saw
  • Shelves are adjustable shelf pins using a lee valley veritas self pin jig that I purchased for my first set of built ins – awesome jig and for the 3000+holes I have made with the thing – well worth the money.

Overall a good project that I am very happy with the results. But as usual – we have another project on the drawing board…. so time is awasting !

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