Back in September I received an invitation to attend a bridal shower for Jay’s sister. It said she was registered at Amazon and Target. Well, I do not like Target so I hopped on Amazon to see what she needed/wanted for gifts. That’s when I saw this:
This isn’t the exact one that was on their list, but it’s close enough. The particular piece they had registered for had more of a gray/white distressed finish and it was $268.
I feel like I need to add a disclaimer here… growing up on a farm the very last thing that I want to use to decorate my house is distressed barn wood. Or even the barn look. It just makes me feel dirty and sneezy (which is how I usually feel if I have to be in the barn for any length of time). However, to each his own and if they want to bring the farm into the house… good for them.
My biggest issue with their choice of entertainment center was that despite the fact it used the term ‘wood’ in the description you had to read the smaller print at the bottom to discover that the entire thing was made out of MDF with a fancy laminate finish. Considering it was only $268 I didn’t expect that it was going to be made of real wood. I’m not a wood snob, but I prefer my furniture to be made out of actual solid wood even if it’s pine. At least you know it will last and if you decide that you dislike the finish you can always change it. You just know that this MDF piece is going to warp after a few years and if you mar it in any way you can’t easily fix it.
Do you recall that Jay just recently built a floating entertainment center for a coworker?
I showed Jay the registry and said that we could easily build his sister a very similar entertainment center, but it would be made out of real wood. I also pointed out that in a recent issue of Wood Magazine they’d had plans for a buffet that looked almost exactly like the entertainment center on the registry. The buffet in the magazine was a beautiful oak and I thought looked much nicer than the distressed barn wood.
Jay called up his sister and asked if she was particularly attached to the MDF version. They hadn’t even realized that it was MDF. We offered to make them, as their wedding gift, almost the exact same thing in solid wood. They were very happy about this. We asked if they were committed to the distressed look and they said that they definitely wanted the gray/white finish. *sigh*
Jay and I discussed options and I told him that I know I can find tutorials online about how to get the perfect distressed wood finish. However, I begged him to use pine because there is no way I could bring myself to cover beautiful oak with paint. If I were sent to The Bad Place, one of the most effective methods of torture they could use is to make me do faux distressed looks using paint on beautiful wooden furniture.
Based on resources and availability Jay ended up using pine. *the crowd cheers*
Using the plans from the magazine he drew it in SketchUp and then started the build.
This piece is quite large. And it’s going to be quite heavy. I think Jay said that the overall length is just over 6′. For some reason I’m thinking that the top had to be 58″ long, but I could just be making that up.
The magazine used a solid piece of oak plywood (I think) for the top, but Jay glued up some pine boards that he grooved to fit into each other snuggly.
The only good thing about painting this is that I won’t have to worry about the different boards taking the finish in different ways.
As I have been working on my own projects, Jay has continued to work on the entertainment center.
Look close and you can see some additional details that he added.
He created a template to make drilling the dowel holes (to support the shelves) a lot easier and straighter.
Here is the top after the glue was dry:
Currently the doors are clamped while the glue dries.
The wedding is supposed to take place at the beginning of January (we’ll see what happens due to the Plague), but Jay didn’t want to be working on it at the last minute. Especially since I will have a large amount of work to do on it once he has completed the construction. Let’s hope I can pull it off!