My former student, Emily, asked me to build her a nightstand for her newly redecorated bedroom. Emily is in college, so she needed a piece of furniture that was fresh and young.
I sent her at least 15 pictures of nightstand options and made her answer just a few (hundreds) questions. Needless to say, I think I overwhelmed her.
In the end, Emily decided on this design.
When I priced the build for this nightstand, it was expensive. I was sure that Emily would rather spend her hard-earned part-time job money on something a little more exciting than the recommended Purebond Maple Plywood (though I love the stuff) and bun feet (even though I really like those too), so I made a couple of changes to make the design a little bit more affordable:
-I substituted the Maple Purebond for some less expensive hardwood plywood at Home Depot.
-I extended the vertical trim pieces on the front, side, and back to make legs instead of using bun feet.
-I eliminated the extra molding pieces. (This was less of a cost issue and more of a design issue.)
-Instead of using plywood for the top, I ripped and cut 1x6s and joined them together like a tabletop.
So basically I completely changed the design.
The build went something like this:
I cut some wood and drilled some holes.
Then I attached some side trim.
Then I attached trim to the front.
Next was the drawer. I have never built a really successful, working drawer…until now. Yay!
Yeah that drawer works!
The drawer looked so bare without a face though.
Now here’s where it all gets a little bad. I stained it Espresso. It looked good when I was doing it. It also looked good as I put two coats of Polyurethane on it.
But something wasn’t making me love it.
So naturally, I procrastinated. Instead of sanding it down and restaining right away, I cleaned a shed full of old barnwood!
The next day, I did what I was supposed to do. I sanded the polyurethane, but left most of the Espresso. I then added several coats of Red Mahogany. This really toned down the awful yellow shades in the pine. I finished it up with a coat of Jacobean to add some depth.
I let that dry. A while. A long, long while. You know, just to be sure.
Then I finished with many coats of wipe-on polyurethane, sanding between coats with 320. That made it really nice.
Then I waited a while, and assembled all of the pieces.
Here it is!
And I actually tried with this photograph. Well, I added decorations.
I know that all college students are really into rustic nightstands. I am, after all, hip.
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