TV Stand/Dresser with DVD Storage on the side.

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Project by Jeremy posted 12-24-2010 08:56 AM 4529 views 3 times favorited 7 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I built this dresser/tv stand for a coworker. It turned out better than I thought it would. It was the first project I built for someone else. They want to pay me for the work but I have no idea what a fair market value would be. I was wondering what everyone thinks I should charge for this. I’ve been looking on the internet but of corse I can’t find anything like it. I fell in love with Minwax Polyshades. It is so easy to apply and the end results are simply amazing. I used the classic black and I love the fact that I can still see the wood grain is awesome. You can see in the pictures why I wanted to cover up the wood with a uniform color and wanted to keep the grains. The DVD pull outs are removable. They are just that, they pull out. I put felt on the top of the metal so they wouldn’t scratch the tray. The metal on the slide was hand bent and polished so I can fit 14 DVD’s per tray. I asked the coworker if he wanted it to be able to come apart to move or strong. He told me strong. This dresser is made from 2 1/2 sheets of 3/4” oak Ply, screwed and glued. I truly believe you could drop this off of a building and it wouldn’t hurt anything maybe dent the wood a little. LOL. All and all I built this with My son in mind so if the coworker doesn’t like if for some reason I would have no problem putting it in his room. Since I’ve discovered the Kreg Jig I don’t think I have done or could do a project without it.

7 comments so far

View Nic's profile


119 posts in 4035 days

#1 posted 12-24-2010 03:02 PM

I really like the way this turned out. Pricing usually is the hardest thing to figure out, especially for us weekend warriors that do it for the challenge or love of woodworking, or because we are cheap. The Customer, usually a friend gets a custom piece that they couldnt get in the store at a better quality, with a warranty. Lets face it, if a drawer slide gets off kilter, or a glue joint splits later, you would probably fix it. I have sold many projects and made many cutom pieces and have never got fair market value. I always justify it by someone else paying for my mistakes and experience. I always try to tally up the end result, and usually miss the mark. This project looks like you have wood, pulls, slides, glue, sand paper, pocket hole screws, stain, poly, metal racks for dvds, Wear and Tear on your equiptment. At least get that all back. To figure out time, thats tricky. We dont have the same assemhly processes that large corporations have, so you can have 20 hours wrapped up into that easily, and lets say your time is worth 15$/hour, it just doesnt add up to be cost effective for your customer. I would look up what a decent quality piece goes for that is similar, know what you have invested, present it to your friend, Tell them, that “this is what it would go for in the store, but this is a custom piece with a better quality slide, with warranty, how much do you think its worth,” and negotiate from there.

View workerinwood's profile


2717 posts in 3630 days

#2 posted 12-24-2010 04:29 PM

Nice work!! Yes it is hard to figure what to charge. Start with your cost of material, figure your hours x hourly rate ( wood worker/craftsman $25/hr ??? – depends on skill level and difficulty of job), add the two together and oh my gosh – that would be a lot of $$$. I usually start with that number and work down to reality. Be sure to get your cost of material and something for your time and your skilled labor (your ability to design and build a piece of furniture). You are not trying to get rich or take advantage of someone, but your time, knowledge and skill is worth some thing. Each job is different – different customer, different piece of furniture, different skills and different material – all these will help determine what to charge. Its a learning experience – I would rather charge to little and get more requests for more work than charge to much and never get another request. I enjoy and get much satisfaction of building custom work, it’s not all about the money.

-- Jack, Albuquerque

View Jim Reeves's profile

Jim Reeves

211 posts in 3586 days

#3 posted 12-26-2010 07:40 PM

Yes very nice pc love your design, l have same problem, most shy away that email as they seem to compare a product to walmart which likely to fall apart in 2-3 years.
I guess l would say as above price out cost to buy material, maybe add on $ 200.00 for labour or more if price is good still have good friend after.
And take photo’s put in a scrap book to show future customers, experience is worth that alone.

But in the end main thing is hopefully both you are happy


-- jim

View senojwerdna's profile


1 post in 3246 days

#4 posted 01-21-2011 06:23 AM

Jeremy, looks great. you have put a lot of details into this piece. I would like to share my formula for pricing a piece as well as how I collect payment. I usually get a request for a piece first and collect all of their requests so I know the specifications. I do up the drawing in pencil, because I like to use a pencil and drafting table, etc. Then I build a bill of materials and source out all the parts. Don’t forget to get some extra for waste and making a mistake. Then I get the prices for all of the parts. The next step is the easiest. To calculate labor, multiply the cost of the parts by four. If the materials cost $150.00, the labor is $650.00. You should also add on $25 to $50 for shop supplies like sand paper and worn out band saw and jigsaw blades. It will cost you to power all those power tools too. Let the customer know that they are getting a premium furniture product. The price will be higher than what it can be purchased for in the store as it should be. This is a much higher quality product. You are most likely not using melamine or whitewood made from burned out rubber trees. It’s made in the USA by you. You are worth this much. You are taking a risk and investing a ton of your own valuable time. You are making something that will last 20 years or longer. You had to invest your time to design, build, finish and deliver something that is a one of a kind piece. No one else has one of these. Don’t sell yourself short or leave money on the table. Don’t start the work until you get paid 40% up front. This is going to be enough to cover the materials plus some. So if the customer doesn’t pay for the finished product, you will not be out anything and you can afford to unload it on someone else at a discount if you don’t want it. Get that final 60% at the end and before delivery. Let the customer see your progress. Don’t finish too fast or they will have a problem valuing your time. If you don’t lose a few opportunities, you are not charging enough.

View Daddypig's profile


30 posts in 663 days

#5 posted 07-12-2018 02:03 PM

Beautiful job!

I can see why you like the minwax stains. I’m going to check them out now too.

I made a garden gate for a neighbor, installed it; then never got paid. I went back over and took it down, they’ve been avoiding me ever since.

Make sure you get your money first!

As far as pricing goes, make sure you at least cover the cost of materials. I see production solid Oak dressers online for about $450. This one is custom, handmade, but oak plywood (?). How much depends on how much you like your neighbor. You’re selling a product that they can’t buy and can’t make….don’t sell yourself short.

View Andybb's profile


2233 posts in 1166 days

#6 posted 07-13-2018 12:03 AM

Do people still watch DVD’s? :-)

Just this once ask them to pay you whatever they think it’s worth. That way there’s no way for there to be ill will. It did truly turn out nice.

-- Andy - Seattle USA

View Jeremy's profile


24 posts in 3453 days

#7 posted 07-13-2018 02:12 AM

Thanks Andybb. I posted it 8 years ago. Back then people did watch DVD’s. LOL And it was for his son who also played video games.

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