What got me started woodworking

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Project by Joey posted 12-16-2007 07:28 AM 4355 views 0 times favorited 13 comments Add to Favorites Watch

If you’ll read on my bio on my main page, you’ll understand why I got into woodworking. I Had horrible kitchen cabinets when we bought our house 8 years ago. I wish I had taken before pictures to show. Imagine white cabinets. I tried to fix the problems by building new doors and adding lip molding, but I was not happy. So for about 2 to 3 years I just built my tool collection and got alot better at using them. Then one day, probably 4 months after hurricane Katrina. We had fixed all the damage to the exterior of our house, and we had some money left over. So after much convincing I talked my wife into letting me gut our kitchen, almost completly. I only left a couple of cabinets, the deal was I got to build the cabinets and get the tools I needed and she got all new appliances. She didn’t want wood cabinet, she wanted a faux finish on them (her best friend is an interior designer). So this is what I did and i took these pictures before I installed the pulls, they are bronze designer handles.
The cabinet doors are all raised panel, cove panel with a beaded inside profile on the rail and stile and european thumbnail on the outside edge. The same outside edge was used on the drawers. The finish on the doors and cabinets—, I painted them gloss white. After they dried, I used a dark walnut stain and rubbed them all down and let that dry a couple of days. On top of that I brushed on 2 coats of polyeurathane. The first coat rewets and lifts the stain and streaks it. The second coat just add protection. It gives it an antique finish. All the doors were made out of MDF to save money. It cost me less than $100 in material to build the doors. Using the european hinges cost more than making the doors (those things are $5 a pair) I have 26 doors. The hardware was bought off ebay for $1.40 apiece. At Lowe’s they were $9. Can you tell I’m try to be frugal (I have more money for tools this way). I also did all the tile work, my first time to do this too. Grand total, I spent less than $1000 on all the materials counting the hardware and pulls, tile and flooring. But this is the project that I’m probably most proud of and love for people to come to our house and see it.
I also did all the tile work. I found a wet saw at at local salvage center that came out of a Lowe’s in Biloxi, it must have been north of I-10 because there was only a little water damage on the box. It retailed for over $300 and I got it for $125. This gave my wife the idea to not only tile our kitchen but also both bathrooms. My tool addiction is forcing me to work

-- Joey, Magee, Ms

13 comments so far

View Karson's profile


35229 posts in 5314 days

#1 posted 12-16-2007 07:31 AM

Great design. How many router bits did you go through milling all of the MDF. I find that it’s hard on tool bits. I hope you had a good dust collector system up in operation.

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Appomattox Virginia [email protected]

View Joey's profile


276 posts in 4729 days

#2 posted 12-16-2007 07:36 AM

I use a rigid shop vac on my router table, which the filter on it got stopped up regularly with the fine MDF dust. I found if you put used pantyhose around the filter, it makes cleaning alot easier and the filter last longer. Kind of a prefilter for the filter. I used just one set of bits. a panel raiser, and a matched set for the rail and stiles. Also the outside edge and a 1/2 straight bit for the backcutter. I got them from Rockler and they held up. I keep them clean and honed with a diamond hone set. And have used them a couple of times since, but you can tell they are nearly worn out.

-- Joey, Magee, Ms

View Grumpy's profile


26694 posts in 4765 days

#3 posted 12-16-2007 09:45 AM

Nice cupboards Joey. I too like the idea of DIY. These days you can buy the tools at ridiculously low prices. You can save a lot of money and have the tools left over at the end. There is allways a great deal of satisfaction doing it yourself.

-- Grumpy - "Always look on the bright side of life"- Monty Python

View Russel's profile


2199 posts in 4853 days

#4 posted 12-16-2007 01:09 PM

Definitely a project to be proud of. Nice work on the kitchen.

-- Working at Woodworking

View manilaboy's profile


177 posts in 4849 days

#5 posted 12-16-2007 01:57 PM


I am taking the same route. Have been adding on to my tool collection piece by piece. Been busy every weekend honing up my skill building up my workshop. I am also loading up on ideas from magazines and the net. Draw inspiration from fellow Jocks like you. It is very encouraging to hear and see success stories like yours.


-- "Real jocks do it on a bench"

View rikkor's profile


11295 posts in 4788 days

#6 posted 12-16-2007 02:05 PM

Man, you really did a nice job. Congrats!!

View bryano's profile


546 posts in 4847 days

#7 posted 12-16-2007 03:52 PM

Wow! Thats a fine looking kitchen. Great work.

-- bryano

View Tim Dorcas's profile

Tim Dorcas

188 posts in 4772 days

#8 posted 12-16-2007 07:27 PM

Let me add to the list of compliments. What a fantastic sense of craftsmanship. What router set did you use for the cabinet doors? Did you make the cabinets as well?

-- - A Woodworking & Renovation Blog & - I make. You buy.

View MsDebbieP's profile


18619 posts in 5074 days

#9 posted 12-16-2007 08:14 PM

wow… Nice job!

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (, Young Living Wellness )

View Napaman's profile


5533 posts in 4991 days

#10 posted 12-16-2007 08:48 PM

wow….great transformation…so i am in year 1—-before the “big stuff”...the new running joke when i say i will build something…”...eventually.” looks great…

-- Matt--Proud LJ since 2007

View Beginningwoodworker's profile


13345 posts in 4587 days

#11 posted 04-30-2011 08:09 PM

Nice looking kitchen.

View helluvawreck's profile


32122 posts in 3780 days

#12 posted 04-30-2011 10:22 PM

You have made a wonderful kitchen and I can see why you are proud of it. Congratulations.

-- helluvawreck aka Charles,

View Pie's profile


187 posts in 4319 days

#13 posted 02-10-2014 12:22 AM

WHAT THE HECK ARE YOU DOING????? You were suppose to get all the tools and build crooked cabinets with the drawers on the bottom so your wife would realize what a poor carpenter you are. Now move onto the bedrooms, bathrooms .. lol

Looks like she won on this arrangement. Nice job! That is quite a project and it looks really nice.

I lived in Hattiesburg when Katrina came through. I was just renting and had no damage but so many others were not so fortunate. BTW, great job!

-- Pie

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