Sunday, July 24, 2016

#IGBuilders Challenge

Hi guys!  If you've been following me on facebook, then this is old news, but if not, I'm very excited to share this with you!  A few weeks ago I decided to sign up for a building challenge.

When I signed up, I had no idea what we would actually be asked to build.  After the signup deadline had passed, all builders were sent a set of plans for a simple console table.  We were given instructions to build it, make a few minor modifications if we wanted (as long as the finished piece still resembled the plan), and paint/stain/complete it...all within 3 weeks!  Normally this would have been a simple feat for me and I wouldn't have thought much of it, but with my kids home from school for the summer, I knew my shop time was going to be drastically reduced and I wasn't sure I would meet the 3 week deadline.  BUT, I decided to go for it anyway. ;)

This is a picture of the original plan...

As soon as I saw it, I knew what i wanted to do! :)  I redrew the plan in sketchup but with the modifications I had in mind to make sure it would still "look right".  My modifications included 2 additional legs in the front so I could divide it into 3 sections for drawers and made it two thinner drawers instead of one deeper one.  I also narrowed it down a few inches so I would only have to purchase 8' boards instead of 12' - they're easier to transport in my van - haha! ;)    I also added the bottom shelf and the X's to the sides to match our coffee table I built last month.   I loved it (and hoped the judges would too!)

I purchased a mix of fir, knotty pine and pine plywood and got to work!

I started by building the main frame.

From there I built and added the drawers.

This is actually just a test fit to make sure they were all fitting perfectly before I installed all the drawer slides. :)

For the top I ran all my lumber through my thickness planer to make sure they were all the same thickness and then glued them up to make a larger solid piece rather than use a plywood or other type of sheet material.  One of the things in the original plan that I liked the look of was the breadboard ends.  Rather that just using pocket holes and screws, I decided to attempt a more traditional method called tongue and groove.  I've definitely got to work on it a bit more, but I was happy with the result...even if it's not 100% accurate. ;)

Drawers installed and breadboard ends attached!

I chose to do a stained top and painted bottom.  The colour I chose for paint is called "Ashwood" by Benjamin Moore.  I had the colour matched at Home Depot in a satin finish in their Behr Premium Plus paint line.  I sprayed on at least 4 coats, lightly distressed all the edges (because I know my kids will naturally add to that over time!) and then followed it with a satin polycrylic clear coat.

The top is stained in Minwax Jacobean and finished with a satin wipe-on poly.

To install the drawer fronts, one of the other builders in the challenge shared a tip she had learned - and it is brilliant!  By using a deck (or 3) of playing cards as shims, it allows easy adjustments to space the drawer fronts perfectly!

I always drill my hardware holes in the drawer fronts first so they're perfectly centered.  Then, once shimmed in place, I temporary screw the fronts to the drawer boxes through the predrilled holes.  I shoot a few small staples with my nail gun from the inside of the drawer box into the back of the drawer front which holds the front in place when I remove the temporary screws.  From there I just run my drill through the previous holes I drilled in the drawer front, through the drawer box, and there you go, perfect placement holes for the hardware!

Speaking of hardware, aren't these gorgeous???  I found them at our local Windsor Plywood and knew they were perfect!  I believe it was an "aged bronze" finish.

And, here is my finished table!

I am SO thrilled with how my table turned out and it fits in perfectly in our home!  Now, this was a building challenge and there could only be one winner.  Definitely head over to Instagram and check out #IGBuilderschallenge and see the other builders gorgeous builds! As soon as the tables started being posted, I had NO idea how the judges would ever make a decision!  SOOO tough!

With over 200 builders signed up and SO many gorgeous tables built, I never actually thought I would ever win....well, I was completely shocked and overjoyed when I received a message saying that the judges had picked MY table as the winner!!!

I couldn't believe it...and was a little more than excited. ;)  Lets just say our neighbors thought we'd won the lottery the way I was freaking out on our back deck! ;)  Hey, I felt like I had!!

Anyway, now that the challenge is done, I'm sitting back for a little breather before working on the next project. ;)  Well...maybe.... 

Thanks for popping by!