Browse the Builder Showcase Articles

Oct
21
2014

I modified the benches to make stools. They work great. The plans were very easy to follow and it looks awesome in the backyard...just in time for the winter, haha.

To Read More About This Build, Visit This Blog Post 
Estimated Cost 

About $60 for the stools and $50-60 for the table.

Length of Time 

Approx 3 days...took me longer because I couldnt do it all at one time. :)

Modifications 
Lumber Used 

White Pine

Finishing Technique 

Thompsons Waterseal

Additional Project Details 
Note
Oct
14
2014
DIY Ram's Horn Shelf and Skeleton Taxidermy Display // Easy Halloween Decor Project

Tis the season, as they say, and with this easy project you will add just the right amount of haunt to your Halloween decor, in a snap. To create your own Ram's Horn Display Shelf, only a few items and a few minutes of your time are needed. This project is seriously that easy... if you love the look of taxidermy or horns, then this could easily be a project you create any time of year, it really isn't specific to Halloween!

Spooky Display for The Design Confidential DIY Ram's Horn Shelf and Skeleton Taxidermy Display // Easy Halloween Decor Project

MATERIALS // Shelf

/ 1x6 at 6 feet. I used a dog eared cedar fence board like this because they are really inexpensive!

/ 2 - 1 1/2" Right Angle Brackets

1 1/4" Screws and Wall Anchors for Drywall

#6 3/8" Screws if using a fence board and #6 1/2" Screws if using a regular 1x6 board.

Gold Ram's Horns

Sandpaper

Finishing Supplies if you plan to paint or stain your shelf. I left mine natural.

INSTRUCTIONS //

/ Cut your board down to size. Something around or under 3 feet in length is best. Sand according to your intended finish. If you plan to leave natural, sand rough edges and you will obviously need to sand quite a bit more if you plan to stain or paint your shelf. Attach your right angle brackets approximately 4 to 6 inches in from the outside edges of your board (the longer your board, the further in you will place your brackets). The hardware will attach to the bottom your board and hang downward. Mark your holes on the wall where you plan to fasten your shelf (since you attached the brackets to the board already, this will be a snap) and then put your wall anchors in place according to the instructions on the package. Set the screw holes on your bracket hardware over the top of your wall anchors (which should be fairly flush to the wall once in place) and using the screws provided with your anchors, fasten your shelf in place.

/ You are going to place a 2 1/2" drywall screw just to the outside of each of your brackets and fairly close to the bottom of your board. You will not screw this in very far. It should protrude from your wall about 2 1/4" give or take.

/ Cut your horns apart (they likely have a clear cord that would sit around your head if you were using these properly - but we are not - so cut the cord my friends, or at least unsecure it. Holding your horns at the approximate location of your long screws, determine the angle you want them to sit and make a light mark on the top in this place to note the direction for our next step. Using an extra screw, create a small hole in the flat part of the horn that is fairly near the top edge, just below where you made your mark. You are going to use this hole to help you slide the horn over the top of your screw. It will rest on the screw and sit under your board, appearing as though it is the bracket for your shelf. ** You can use a bit of mounting tape or duck tape to stick your horn in place over your brackets so they will hide the hardware and also so they are not loose. You want them to sit nice and tight, right up against your board. 

That is it, you are finished! Place something light weight to display on your shelf!

Antler Display for The Design Confidential DIY Ram's Horn Shelf and Skeleton Taxidermy Display // Easy Halloween Decor Project

To mount my antler inside the frame, I simply used removable mounting putty on each point where it touches the wall. This baby is pretty secure over here, but if you expect small children to be in the vicinity (especially below a sharp pointy antler), perhaps you should secure using nylon finishing line and wrap around the hardware used to hang your frame.

DECOR SOURCES // Halloween Cat / Halloween Crow / Golden Horns

VINTAGE + OTHER ITEMS // Frame is Vintage / Table - Zinc Garden Table from Crate & Barrel - Similar Table Here and Exact Table For Sale By Owner Here / Stacking Candelabra - PotteryBarn - Similar Found Here and Here / Antlers found on eBay - Similar Here and Here / Gold + White Antler Wall Sculpture - Target Threshold Brand - this would work beautifully as well.

Oct
02
2014
The Design Confidential Reader Showcase // Pottery Barn inspired Toscana Table

I am new to building furniture and I am so very thankful for these plans. Saved me a lot of money.

So I got married in June and was walking through Pottery Barn with her one day when she said how much she loved a certain Pottery Barn Table. The Toscana Table is a beautiful table but no way I was going to spend what they are asking for it. I blurted out that I could build that, mind you I had 0 building experience and had no idea where to even start. So, after Google sleuthing for a few days I came accross this website and these plans. They were absolutely a life savor. I did modify it though. I used 2x6's for the legs instead iof 2x4's. It gave a thicker look and I felt matched the Pottery Barn version more closely. Also, the skirt, instead of have the 2x4's being vertical, I laid them flat. The reasoning behind this is that my fiance is 6'2'' and I am 6'3'', wanted a little more room for our legs. This adjustment also allowed me to extend the table top past the legs a bit more. For the stain I used General Finishes Java Gel Stain. You will not find a better stain for your money. It was so easy to work with and the end result was a beautiful rich color. The top coat I used was Min-Wax High Build Polyurethane. I am very pleased with the results and I am so very thankful for these building plans. I discovered a hobby that I love and can't wait to build something else now.

Building the Legs for The Design Confidential Reader Showcase // Pottery Barn inspired Toscana Table
Attaching the Center Joist for The Design Confidential Reader Showcase // Pottery Barn inspired Toscana Table
To Read More About This Build, Visit This Blog Post 
Estimated Cost 

$100-$200

Length of Time 

2 weekends, about 32 hours

Modifications 
Lumber Used 

All Pine

Finishing Technique 
Additional Project Details 
Building the Support Frame for The Design Confidential Reader Showcase // Pottery Barn inspired Toscana Table
Angle Progress Shot for The Design Confidential Reader Showcase // Pottery Barn inspired Toscana Table
Finished Build and Stain for The Design Confidential Reader Showcase // Tahoe-Dude's Chesapeake Picnic Pable and Benches
Note
Sep
28
2014
The Design Confidential Reader Showcase // Tahoe-Dude's Chesapeake Picnic Pable and Benches

Wonderful set of plans. Easy to follow. Easy to modify if you need to, as I did in my case. Results are very pleasing.

Beautiful Sides for The Design Confidential Reader Showcase // Tahoe-Dude's Chesapeake Picnic Pable and Benches
Close Up of Table Top for The Design Confidential Reader Showcase // Tahoe-Dude's Chesapeake Picnic Pable and Benches
To Read More About This Build, Visit This Blog Post 
Estimated Cost 

Eh, about $175, give or take

Length of Time 

About 4 Weekends plus a little after work a few nights for sanding and staining.

Modifications 

Well, there are a couple....

1. I don't like that the crossing legs on both the benches and the table were actually cut in half and attached. Therefore, I cut dado cuts into both cross pieces, glued and screwed them together for added stability.

2. My wife is an Italian and likes to have big meals with lots of peeps. Therefore, I modified the plans to push the table and benches to 8ft long rather than the original plan which is 6ft. I used a little flair in the center of the table to add the additional 2ft and break up the long lines that 8ft boards would have created. In doing so, I had to add some additional bracing on the underside to make it a bit more sturdy to support the extra length. But I didn't have to add a center support leg system.

Lumber Used 

Douglas Fur

Finishing Technique 

I used the same finish as the builder John because I like the way his photos turned out. I was not disappointed in the least. Two coats of Behr transparent weatherproofing all in one finish. Cedar natural tone

Additional Project Details 
Finished Build for The Design Confidential Reader Showcase // Tahoe-Dude's Chesapeake Picnic Pable and Benches
Opposite Side of The Design Confidential Reader Showcase // Tahoe-Dude's Chesapeake Picnic Pable and Benches
Fish Eye Wide Angle Shot of The Design Confidential Reader Showcase // Tahoe-Dude's Chesapeake Picnic Pable and Benches
Table Top for The Design Confidential Reader Showcase // Tahoe-Dude's Chesapeake Picnic Pable and Benches
Note
Sep
03
2014
Reader Showcase // John's PB Inspired Clara Buffet
Reader Showcase // John's PB Inspired Clara Buffet

I needed something to fill this empty space in my kitchen and the Clara Buffet was perfect! For this project, I chose to use oak, a red stain with brown and black accents, and brushed nickel hardware.

As always, thank you to TDC for the great plans and thanks for reading! Also, check out my blog post (link below) for a lot more build pictures and thoughts on each building step!

Here are images of the piece mostly assembled without the doors or drawers. As you can see, everything has already been finished to avoid tight corners. Drilling the space for the door hinges...this was nerve racking! As you can see I taped around the area to avoid any damage to the rest of the finish. This plus the flange on the hinge hid any defects. You can see the gusset  I added to the top inside edge of the side panels (see modifications section). This is what I secured the top with on the edges and it worked great.

Assembly with shelves and drawer frames added for Reader Showcase // John's PB Inspired Clara Buffet
Gusset added to top inside edge of side panels to screw down the top from the beneath for Reader Showcase // John's PB Inspired Clara Buffet
I bought a kit/template for drilling these holes which was a lifesaver for Reader Showcase // John's PB Inspired Clara Buffet
To Read More About This Build, Visit This Blog Post 
Estimated Cost 

Lumber was right over $200. Hardware, drawer slides, hinges, and staining materials were probably another $150 bringing the total to $350. Still a steep discount to the original!

Length of Time 

This is hard to estimate, but I'd say 20+ hours because of all the finishing work. Actual cutting and assembly of the piece was MUCH short and could probably be done in a weekend.

Modifications 

I made a few modifications to the plans for multiple reasons:

Shelves:

First, I eliminated the top set of shelves since they really only serve to enclose the space where the drawers go. Instead I used 1x2's to mimic the front edge of where the top shelves would have been. This provided rigidity to the piece and kept the look the same. 

Second, I had to slice off 3/4" from the indicated depth for the main shelves in the plans. Reason being, the plans call for the shelves to be set back this distance so that the doors can close but all four shelf pieces are dimensioned for the entire depth of the cabinet on the cut sheet.

Legs:

The plans call for 4x4's on the legs but I chose to try and recreate the original legs as closely as possible utilizing hardwood. This was for asthetics only and the original plans could be used with no issues here.

Top Connection:

I realized during assembly that I had not predrilled vertical pocket holes in the side panels to attach the top. Fortunately I had two 3/4" wide pieces of stained/finished plywood that I had sliced off the back of the shevles. I used these as gussets on the top inside edge of the side panels to secure the top from beneath which worked great.

Lumber Used 

As mentioned before, I used oak for almost every piece in the project besides the back for which I used birch plywood, the drawer boxes which are pine, and a couple of non-visible cross braces which are also pine.

Oak is a different animal working with but I really enjoyed the results. Make sure your cordless drills have good batteries! This stuff will eat up a battery real quick!

Finishing Technique 

The finish here was not difficult, but takes time. It consisted of red gel stain, brown glaze, black glaze, and final lacquer with sanding sealer sprayed on between each step. All stains and glazes were brushed on and wiped off.

I chose to prefinish all the individual pieces before assembly to avoid difficulties with tight corners. This had advantages and disadvantages; The former being that we achieved a very uniform and professional finish on the entire piece. Disadvantages to this technique include difficulties surrounding utilization of pocket hole plugs (see my blog), needing a very large space in order to stage all the pieces while drying, and needing to be careful during assembly. 

Gel Stain Added - Kind of red right now!..Glaze to the rescue for Reader Showcase // John's PB Inspired Clara Buffet
Weighing down the back with all the panels to get the bend out of the plywood! for Reader Showcase // John's PB Inspired Clara Buffet
Phew that's better; Brown and Black Glazes Added for Reader Showcase // John's PB Inspired Clara Buffet
Drawers and drawer slides added for Reader Showcase // John's PB Inspired Clara Buffet
Final assembled piece with all hardware added for Reader Showcase // John's PB Inspired Clara Buffet
Final assembled piece in new space for Reader Showcase // John's PB Inspired Clara Buffet
Aug
30
2014
Reader Showcase // Two Toned Chaise Lounge for FFA Fair DIY Outdoor Kreg Jig Project Plans from Wood using Pocket Hole Screws

I found the plans for your chaise lounge chair and I started constructing it for my FFA fair, for a project that will be judged and showcased.

To Read More About This Build, Visit This Blog Post 
Estimated Cost 
Length of Time 
Modifications 
Lumber Used 
Finishing Technique 
Additional Project Details 
Reader Showcase // Two Toned Chaise Lounge for FFA Fair DIY Outdoor Kreg Jig Project Plans from Wood using Pocket Hole Screws
Note

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