Cara’s Office – Part 1

Custom design for office built-ins

Cara and family just moved into their new home about a month ago and they were ready to jump in feet first to get this space ready to use as an office and TV room.  You walk through those French doors to the pool so the middle of the room is left open so there is a nice walkway but the sofa will sit against the wall exactly opposite a mounted flat screen tv.

Custom design for office built-ins

I think it’s going to be an awesome multi-purpose, highly functional and gorgeous room.

Here’s Cara’s Project Diary…

March 22

So, we have officially been in this house for 4 weeks.  We were relocated to this new area for my husband’s career.  It was a good move, however we lost a lot of space due to the increase in housing costs in our new location.  So, where do I start?   Well, by downsizing, we gave up a craft room, separate office, and a family room.  Now, in the new house, I basically have a room with two very long walls, 19 feet to be exact and no storage.  What’s a girl to do??  Call in the big guns and reach out to Sandra.

Here is where we started.  A lot of boxes and a hot mess.  Things I love=tile floor, can lights; things I hate about this room=weird paint job, crappy chair railing, no storage.

Now, don’t you go feeling sorry for me, because beyond those French doors is a large swimming pool and private oasis.  It’s just this room that lacks a defined purpose.

So, the basic plan for this room is to have a wall of built ins that will include two desks, bookshelves, and custom shelving for my printers.  This room will have a coach in it, and a flat screen.  So, we now have a plan to gain back our office, craft room, and family room.  It will be amazing!!

April 9

Ok, so this is the week we really start!  Plans are being drawn up and we have our first instructions – clean out the room and remove the baseboards.  Umm, ok.  Where am I going to put all of this crap??  Thank goodness for Facebook online garage sales.  The desk went for a cheap $50, I threw out some things, and the rest remains in boxes to be unpacked once my built in desks, cabinets, and bookshelves are ready.

We removed the baseboards and to our unfortunate delight, we uncovered a moldy corner.  My husband, fortunately for me, wrote his dissertation on mold, and knew exactly what to do, so I promptly put him on clean up duty.  He did a fabulous job!

April 13

Alright, this is the big day.  This is when I find out if I am made of the stuff that champions are made of (ok, wood working champions).  We got a little bit of a slow start, but we headed out to our local big box store.  OMG, what the heck, is everyone and their dog here today???  Seriously, parking was a mess.  Everyone who thinks they can build something was here.  Poor fools, if only they were as professional as me with my folder of instructions from Sandra and my fancy coffee cup.  Let’s see here, oh we want the big boards.  Crap!  Those are big boards.  No biggie, I’ve got my husband and 7 year old daughter, we’ve got this.  We need how many?  Ok, time to flag down a person in a vest.  10 minutes later, cart loaded with big sheets of wood. Check.  Next, we need something called “hardboard”.  We need what??  Ok, I can do this.  My husband and I start going up and down the aisles.  Ok, can’t find it.  I need to make a quick call to Sandra, who immediately is able to direct me to what I need, since the store associate wasn’t able to help us at all.  Hardboard loaded, check.  Screws, nails, and one bathroom break, and 30 more minutes later we are completely loaded and heading out to build something great.

We get home, and start getting set up when my daughter reminds me of a birthday party she is supposed to be going to.  Oh man! A change of clothes and some makeup and we are out the door.

I finally make it home around 5:30 and I am ready to start sawing!!!  Or so I thought, after 5 minutes of said daughter begging to go swimming, hubby and I give in and go for it.  That literally lasted long enough for me to get my left big toe in.  Let’s just say it isn’t warm enough yet.

Now I am ready to get started on this project, what’s that you say family, you want to eat dinner??  Are you kidding me??  Can a woman just get some time to cut her wood or what??  Ok, KFC it is then.  Gobble gobble gobble.  Now, I am going to cut some wood.

I used the Kreg Rip Cut and loved it!!

I got some cuts made, but as you can tell, it is really getting dark and we have close neighbors, so I called it a day and vowed to finish my cuts the next day and build!!

April 14

Today was a great day! I was able to finish all my cuts for my first four cabinet bases.  I think I only bugged Sandra about 100 times, but she was always there for me and got me through all of my questions.

So, once we got to the cuts that were too large for the Kreg Rip Cut, we bought the Bora clamp, which allowed us to make straight wide cuts.  I finished making my cuts.

Then the building begins!

I did everything just as instructed by my fearless leader!

Isn’t that the cutest nail gun??  Don’t tell my husband, but it’s purple!!  How did he end up with a purple nail gun??  I don’t know, but I just claimed it as my own.

Yes people, that is the smile of achievement!!  It only took me two days, but darn right I am ecstatic!!

Here it is, in all of its glory!!  Now only three more to go this week!  Now that I have one under my belt, hopefully the rest will go a little faster.

Me: It is SO EXCITING when you build your first ever cabinet and it’s Solid — and it’s Square. It’s the most beautiful thing in the world at that moment.  Cara’s cabinets look beautiful! It does get easier and go faster after you get it down.  The first one is slow because it’s all new.  You’re apprehensive, nervous and excited.  Then you learn all the tricks and you’re off and running.

Read Cara’s next post: part 2.

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