Fireplace surround with shelving and cabinets

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Project by GaryL posted 12-02-2010 04:50 PM 29173 views 15 times favorited 20 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This was part of a family room renovation. I will admit that the two lower cabinets are Wood-Mode/Brookhaven production cabinets and I had to build everything else to match. I was a nervous wreck while finishing these, knowing they will be butted together with the factory cabinets. It came out quite well, with the color and finish matching exactly to the factory units. The homeowner could not tell the difference between the two. He kept asking about different components, “Did you order this from Brookhaven?” I had to keep laughing when I’d answer over and over “No, made that in the shop.” This was the ultimate compliment when they could not tell the difference. Wood-Mode/Brookhaven are high end semi-custom cabinet manufacturers and I was pleased to be able to duplicate their quality.

-- Gary; Marysville, MI...Involve your children in your projects as much as possible, the return is priceless.

20 comments so far

View canadianchips's profile


2627 posts in 3502 days

#1 posted 12-02-2010 04:58 PM

This looks very good.
The hardest thing to do is build something that duplicates a “factory” or even another craftsman piece of work. Sometimes it is comical when customers just don’t know that pieces can be built in our shops !
The phrase “You made that yourself ? ” should be taken as a compliment.

-- "My mission in life - make everyone smile !"

View Chip's profile


1904 posts in 4598 days

#2 posted 12-02-2010 05:00 PM

This “before and after” puts some of that TV show stuff to shame. Beautiful work Gary.

-- Better to say nothing and be thought the fool... then to speak and erase all doubt!

View kit's profile


24 posts in 3276 days

#3 posted 12-02-2010 05:49 PM

High quality craftsmanship & nice symmetry. Can lights really highlight this feature wall & the granite element compliments the colors in the furniture, walls & floor. Overall, a real boost in home value!

May I ask: what woods did you use for the mantel & surround?


-- Kit, Paso Robles, CA,

View GaryL's profile


1099 posts in 3336 days

#4 posted 12-02-2010 06:01 PM

Kit….Poplar and MDF, finished with Magna-Lac. The MDF edges need a few more coats of primer, sanded between, to get a satin smooth finish. The shelves are 1” maple ply with a polar edging.

Thanks for the compliments guys!

-- Gary; Marysville, MI...Involve your children in your projects as much as possible, the return is priceless.

View Heidi Neely's profile

Heidi Neely

550 posts in 3679 days

#5 posted 12-02-2010 06:30 PM

Turned out just beautifully! Looks like an exact match…’d never know you didn’t get them all factory made : )

-- Heidi :) “The only source of knowledge is experience”

View BillyJ's profile


622 posts in 3708 days

#6 posted 12-02-2010 07:13 PM

Very nice work. I enjoy seeing your work. Great job.

-- I've never seen a tree that I wouldn't like to repurpose into a project. I love the smell of wood in the morning - it smells like victory.

View helluvawreck's profile


32086 posts in 3372 days

#7 posted 12-02-2010 07:25 PM

Gary, that looks very nice and I can see that you’re quite skilled at what you do. You sure can’t tell that the cabinets were different. It’s amazing that you got em so close. Nice work.

-- helluvawreck aka Charles,

View Mike Robinson's profile

Mike Robinson

19 posts in 4308 days

#8 posted 12-02-2010 07:39 PM

Right Click Save.

Love it Gary. Our family room is next up on the list and I was trying to picture what to do with our fireplace. You just answered it for me. Not sure if I will go with a painted finish or natural wood, but this is exactly the look I was thinking of. Great job.


View Jonathan's profile


2609 posts in 3556 days

#9 posted 12-02-2010 07:51 PM

Beautifully proportioned transformation Gary!

Seamless from the Wood-Mode/Brookhaven cabinets, to your matching work.

Sounds like you exceeded the homeowners’ expectations, which could turn into repeat business, or a referral… a job well done!

-- Jonathan, Denver, CO "Constructive criticism is welcome and valued as it gives me new perspectives and helps me to advance as a woodworker."

View mfike's profile


100 posts in 4171 days

#10 posted 12-02-2010 08:39 PM

That’s really nice. Everything looks so clean and tight. I have been trying to design something similar to this for my living room off and on for a while now. I’m gonna have to favorite this for future inspiration. Well done Gary.

View dakremer's profile


2746 posts in 3597 days

#11 posted 12-02-2010 11:48 PM

wow great job! these look awesome

-- Hey you dang woodchucks, quit chucking my wood!!!!

View TulsaWoodSmith's profile


228 posts in 3862 days

#12 posted 12-03-2010 01:52 AM

Your work really is exceptional. I am certainly getting some good ideas I can steal.

-- TulsaWoodSmith, Tulsa, OK The tools aren't the problem-It's the organic interface!

View Claymation's profile


165 posts in 3321 days

#13 posted 12-03-2010 04:24 AM

NICE. Job. Period. !

-- Clay (Master Kindler) ~ Central VA

View ND2ELK's profile


13495 posts in 4279 days

#14 posted 12-03-2010 04:30 AM

The room looks great. You did a very nice job. Thanks for posting.

God Bless

-- Mc Bridge Cabinets, Iowa

View shopmania's profile


701 posts in 3687 days

#15 posted 12-03-2010 06:33 AM

Super looking job Gary!

-- Tim, Myrtle Beach, [email protected] Just one more tool, that's all I need! :)

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