17 Dec

Modern Rustic Farm Table

Modern Rustic Farm TableToday I delivered this 3″ x 6″ modern rustic farm table. The client gave me a picture of what she wanted and the dimensions of the table top and let me run with it.

The top is made of beech salvaged from a barn in Ohio and the legs are made from poplar timbers salvaged from a barn in Alabama. Both are beautiful with many natural features and color variations.

The beech lumber used for the top was planed, biscuit joined, sanded and finished with penetrating tung oil. A few larger imperfections were filled with wood filler before sanding. The legs were planed square, cut to length, and finished with tung oil. The aprons were cut from the same lumber as the top and attached with glue and sunken wood screws.

Hanger bolts were used to attach the legs to corner cut outs in the top. Corner supports were attached to the apron with glue and wood screws.

This project was very enjoyable and I am looking forward to seeing the client’s rustic kitchen redo she plans to build around this table.

01 Aug

Coastal Living Idea House Toasted by Lightning

One of the coolest Idea Houses I worked on is now toast. Lightning started a massive fire that burnt the River Dunes, NC home to the ground earlier this month. It is a such a waste of a gorgeous home.

Saddest thing to me is that the 4′ x 7′ red oak dining table that was custom built from old barn timbers was presumably also destroyed by the fire. It was a beautiful piece—pardon my prejudice—that I really enjoyed building. You can see more pictures of the table here and there is a shot of it in the news video above.

28 Aug

Built-in Bathroom Shelves

Unfinished built-in shelves

Unfinished built-in shelves

In a small bathroom space is at a premium. Recently I replaced a vanity and counter-top  that ran the length of a bath with a European-style, shallow-profile vanity. At that time, a new light fixture and a re-framed medicine chest were added.

While those improvements were needed, the reduction in counter and under-sink storage space were a problem. So, built-in shelves were next.

Finding the studs was the first step. A standard stud-finder worked like a charm and from there I could measure out the 16″ centers and start taking out the drywall within the selected space. (interior space between studs is normally 14.5″ unless you have an unpredictable old home or a nutty contractor built the wall)

Once the drywall was punched out using a flat-head screwdriver and a hammer (most efficient way I have found), a couple shelves of 3/4″ plywood were cut and  inserted. Friction plus some wood glue made for a good tight and permanent fit.

Built-in shelves, close-up

Built-in shelves, close-up

I used some left-over 4 x4 stone tile ($5/sq ft) for the main part of the shelf tops and some smaller squared sheets ($10/sq ft) for shelf accents and  the back of the shelves. After tan grout is worked into the cracks the shelf under sides and frame will be completed with poplar stained to match the mirror frame.

21 Jan

Project Plans

If you are looking for a project plan for a chair, bench, wall organizer, bed, or cabinet, check out Southern Living project plans. The archive includes plans for indoor and outdoor furniture. Each plan contains a materials list, cutting list, measured drawing, and build instructions. The plans are rated for degree of difficulty to help you decide if you are up to the task.

My particular favorites are the Adirondack chair, Outdoor Daybed, and the Picnic Table (which I think is cool for indoors, too).

Plans can be ordered for $4 and are delivered as a pdf via email.

03 Nov

Writhing Wood

Bruce, at Redwood Bench and Table Co. in Mitchell, Oregon sent me the coolest picture of twisted western juniper. I had never seen wood like this. I guess it grows this way. Bruce says he removes the bark with a pressure washer. That method appeals to me as my normal method is very low-tech—a  pocket knife and some elbow grease.

Western Juniper

Western Juniper

If you are interested in purchasing some of this writhing wood, I bet Bruce can fix you up. You can contact him at 541.462.3232. Check out their web site to see some really cool beds, lamps, and tables.