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Looking for Design ideas, sort of Cupboard-like - C. in Indy - 04-15-2019

Hi All,

We have a "stereo cabinet" which is older than we've been married.  A change of scene would be nice.  In the picture here, from right to left:
- Purchased end-table, we love it... elm top over black-stained legs.
- TV stand which I made in 2008 with walnut and black MDF.  Pretty happy with it.
- The "stereo cabinet" which we don't like very much now.
- A "CD shelf system" which will probably go away too.


Where the stereo cabinet is, something fairly tall would be nice to fill the space.  Probably 5 ft. tall -- or somewhat more.

I have seen the Christopher Schwarz "Oak Aumbry" piece and I really like it, but it's not contemporary enough for this room.

I have seen pictures of many Krenov cabinets, and there is much to like, but something with black structure and natural-wood highlights (instead of extensive natural wood) would fit in here better.   I don't really fancy curved legs; I would like a more rectilinear version.

Pine cupboards (chimney cupboards?) look pretty nice, but again for this room a yellow wood or a knotty room isn't a great fit.  I do have a homemade pine cabinet in another room that goes nicely there, though.

Most of my lumber is 48" or less in length, so a style using those shorter piece lengths while still being fairly tall in composition would be a bonus.

Fire away, I'm brainstorming!


RE: Looking for Design ideas, sort of Cupboard-like - bandit571 - 04-15-2019

Maybe a version of this?   Confused  
made to fit into a spot beside a chimney....called a stepback  cupboard..
Have made 2 of these, one out of pine, and this one out of Ash... Cool
Choice of wood is up to you... Winkgrin

RE: Looking for Design ideas, sort of Cupboard-like - rectangle618 - 04-15-2019

I had a similar need and built the cabinet pictured below. Cherry carcase, top is mostly quarter sawn Big Box 2X10's ripped and glued up. The door panels are spalted maple. It's sized to fit my space. CD's go in the drawers. The arched pediment is sized to prevent the dog's tennis ball from rolling under it. The top is 7' long, 20" deep. It's 34" tall. (The walnut case of drawers on top is a separate piece.)
My advice: Think about all the things you would like to store in the finished piece and build something that will do that job. Get an rough outline of the size and shape, play around with that, make drawings, make changes and one day you will know that you have arrived at what you want to build. It's a fun process.

apologies for the crappy flash lighting, but you get the idea...

RE: Looking for Design ideas, sort of Cupboard-like - Derek Cohen - 04-15-2019

I am not sure if this is your style. We prefer to keep things uncluttered, quite minimalistic.

Years ago I built two campaign chests and placed them alongside one another ...

Regards from Perth


RE: Looking for Design ideas, sort of Cupboard-like - Hank Knight - 04-16-2019

If it were me, I'd build a simple floor-to-ceiling unit to fill the entire space between the two pilasters where the TV and the stereo cabinet now reside. It would combine book shelves with custom space for the TV, stereo and anything else you might think of (artwork, sculpture, vases or other 3D artwork, for examples). The custom spaces for the TV and stereo would provide shelving/enclosures for the components and hide the wiring. It would be a clean, uncluttered way to house your entertainment systems with your library and art collection.

RE: Looking for Design ideas, sort of Cupboard-like - gov.cheese - 04-16-2019

First thing I'd do is get the TV mounted on the wall and then design cabinet/shelving to go underneath it between the two columns.

RE: Looking for Design ideas, sort of Cupboard-like - C. in Indy - 04-17-2019

You all have some very nice-looking projects!

Thanks for the inputs.  Hopefully I enjoy the challenge...


RE: Looking for Design ideas, sort of Cupboard-like - hbmcc - 04-17-2019

Quote:You all have some very nice-looking projects!

Thanks for the inputs.  Hopefully I enjoy the challenge...


Don't give up on us too soon, Chris.....

In my line of work your room design is called lining up birds for the carnival duck shoot. Converting everything to drawers, cabinets, and shelves is one way, but it can get busy looking and don't ever ask me to dust the stinker. The TV stand needs to disappear too.

Happy with the TV base? Keep it.  It will define what you do for the rest; it already is, per your spec.'s.  I'm guessing you put in those two pilasters to break up the blank wall. Keep them and you will need to design and build around them. I keep wanting double up the new stuff to flank the TV between the pilasters. That leaves the globe table odd man out. Another thing you can do is go into the wallpapering business. 

Personally, for that space I want something like what Rob Lee built and did a humorous build-along (on this forum?). A long, low, Danish style wall cabinet. Simple, simple, simple. 


The attachment simply shows the form to give an idea. I think it is about 7 feet long. I would go up to 9 feet. Those legs are a bit too high-water in my thinking.

RE: Looking for Design ideas, sort of Cupboard-like - C. in Indy - 04-22-2019

The (mostly) rainy Easter weekend let me sort things out some more.

I visited the nest of wiring, which was quite criss-crossed for the last few years, and I moved the DVD player (--> rightward) and the little loudspeakers (--> leftward) so that the "stereo cabinet" and the "TV stand" are now each more stand-alone.    As such, the "stereo cabinet" stands ready to exit the room, along with the rack of CD's.   The TV stand I have been keeping out of sentimental attachment, and a readiness to pivot toward Mother In Law's side of the room sometimes.

Perhaps not emphasized in the picture I posted, this "great room" kind of needs some taller objects.

By chance I just got in a magazine back-issue (~ 2004) which showed a liquor-cabinet that gets rid of the (usually curved) Krenov legs that don't appeal to me.   While this is especially ornate (and frankly out of my league...), I do like the general lines and it has actually got me motivated to mock up some longer legs and a box for further consideration.   Who knows, a basic poplar legs mockup could even turn into something I could paint black and re-use...

Take a look at this amazing inspiration from Tim Gorman:



RE: Looking for Design ideas, sort of Cupboard-like - C. in Indy - 04-30-2019

I am moving in the "Impractical Cabinetmaking" direction.

This may be a Paean to plane-able, paint-able, poplar (PVA-glued) prototyping Smile

Spent too much time gluing up spare poplar, for leg-prototype stocks:


Cut some quick tenons and drilled some mortises:


Did my first "lean-to" size assessment.  This may be where I want to go, more or less.   It isn't the most perfect answer to my living room, but it's calling me to go forward: