You would think that after living with three little guys and a hubby for the previous 14+ years, I would be able to decorate a space for boys without much thought. Not the case at all. In fact, I still find it extremely challenging. My common color plan of neutral grays and blues paired with playful accents of teal and pink, which marries our boy and girl common spaces, does not apply to the boy's personal spaces. They like oranges and reds paired with less white and more wood tones.
So when our oldest spilled some water on his nightstand (and then left it for a few days), the top of it was donzo. And being a cheapy laminate version from Target, there was no chance of sanding things down and fixing it. Although it had seen better days, I was able to salvage the hardware and the drawer components before kicking the frame to the curb.
Using the previous drawer measurements, we set out to DIY a new nightstand for our growing buddy.
Knowing that we had an upcoming copper color challenge with some fellow blogger pals, I selected a warm walnut toned stain which I paired with copper hardware. Because the piece was being stained, I picked out a nicer maple plywood to work with. The entire nightstand was built out of a 4'x4' piece of the maple, which will be nice and sturdy and hopefully last for years to come.
Below is a quick look at the design plan.
To create the outer frame, we created a simple box using our Kreg jig.
The jig allowed us to screw down into the wood at an angle, and prevents the need to utilize nails and screws on the exterior of the furniture.
We followed a similar method to create the base (a second simple box).
As I mentioned, we already had the drawer pieces and hardware from the previous nightstand. That meant we just needed to create a new drawer face. To affix the face, we would have to measure the previous face and create matching slots.
The slit along the bottom was created by running the face of the board over the table saw two times.
The holes (to attach to the pegs of the previous drawer) were created using appropriately sized drill bits and only drilling about 1/2 down into the drawer face.
Once everything was assembled, we used a stainable birch iron-on edging to clean up the exposed edges of the nightstand.
Once completely built, I pulled it inside for a quick photoshoot.
Simple box frame, check. Simple box base, check. New drawer face, check!
We also had a separate piece of smooth birch paneling for the back piece, which we stained prior to attaching it later in the process.
When it came to staining the nightstand, I went straight to my existing stain collection and grabbed the same dark walnut color that we used on the top of our built-in bookcases.
The different wood type (maple), meant that the stain didn't soak into the wood in the same fashion as the pine we had used with the last project. I noticed some very minimal brush marks after the first application, so in-between coats I used a very fine grit sanding block to eliminate those lines and smooth down the finish a bit.
For the second coat, I found it to be much better to apply the stain/poly combo with a soft cotton rag. No more marks and a nice pretty finish.
Because the stain had built-in poly, there was no need to add any additional protective finishes. The nightstand dried in a semi-gloss protective finish.
For the copper hardware, I first tried to gild some brass corners and the ring pull. The gilding didn't stick to the hardware at all, so I turned to plan B which was a brilliant copper spray paint. Instant shiny copper finish!
To match the screw heads to the brass brackets, I just sprayed a small amount of the copper spray paint into a disposable cup and used a q-tip to touch things up.
I was running low on light so I popped the nightstand near our son's window to take these photos. The warmth of the sunset pouring in really pulled out the walnut finish. I will be taking some more photos of the entire space very soon.
Although the nightstand really isn't my personal style, our oldest totally digs it. And when he made a comment that his favorite part was that his dad built it for him, my heart melted and oozed and fluttered and even did a few cartwheels.
Although I have no control over how quickly my son grows, I don't want his room to be too sophisticated. So now that we have this beautiful piece, I am scheming up a few ways to bring back in some playful teenage-esque finishes to the space.
And I don't know if you have heard, but copper is the new gold. It is hot right now, and that is why we selected it for this quarter's color challenge. You can see how my fellow blogger pals incorporated copper into their projects by checking out the links below.
|Maskara Copper Makeup Tip / Small Fry Copper Pumpkins / Vintage Revivals Copper Wall Sconce / Studio DIY One Month Out / Bake @ 350 Decorating Cookies Party|
Previous color challenge posts include: Pink, Gold and Purple.