Introduction: DIY TV Stand With Cabinet Storage

About: I am a father, husband, craftsman, artist, woodworker, furniture maker/designer, and overall DIY'er. Most of my projects involve making unique furniture incorporating many different designs, materials, and ele…

In this instructable, I show you how to build a DIY farmhouse TV stand with cabinet doors.

Even though you may not need a TV stand, the DIY tips in this tutorial will help you with other woodworking projects. There are many things which are difficult to explain with words and images, so be sure to checkout the video tutorial below.


Step 1: TV Stand Measurements

The dimensions for this entertainment center are 36” x 48.5” x 25” (Height x Width x Depth).

For this project, I used ¾” plywood to make the carcass and 1/2″ cypress wood for the trim, shiplap, and cabinets. The cabinet doors have Lexan (Glass Alternative) panes with decorative black corner brackets.

I find the bare wood combined with black decorative hardware gives the TV cabinet a rustic, modern farmhouse style. Keep in mind, any species of wood can be used in place of the Cypress wood.

Step 2: Cut Plywood (with Diagram)

This DIY entertainment center calls for 3 full sheets of plywood. In order to help you minimize waste, I created this cut list.

Quick Tip: I encourage you to only cut the pieces you need for the step you are working on.  

It may be tempting to cut everything at once, but 1 mistake could cost you time and money. By all means, I encourage you to make pre-cuts.  

However, I strongly recommend you cut all the wood needed for step 1, complete step 1, and then move on to step 2. I prefer to cut large sheets of plywood with my track saw.

Then, I finish the other cuts on my table saw. Essentially, smaller pieces of plywood or easier and safer to cut on the table saw.

Step 3: Outer Carcass

First, the outer TV cabinet carcass is made with 3/4″ plywood. It consists of 4 pieces: Bottom, Right, Left, and Back.

Some folks believe pocket hole joinery lacks strength and should not be used. However, I believe pocket holes perform well if used for the right project. Luckily, pocket hole joinery along with wood glue work great for cabinet carcass’.

First, I space the pocket holes evenly across the wood. Most of the time, 3 pocket holes evenly spaced will securely hold the wood together for the glue to dry.

Next, spread glue on both surfaces of the plywood you join together. Make sure you saturate the end grain of plywood with glue. End grain soaks up wood glue very quickly.

Then, use a speed square while fastening the pocket holes to make sure the 2 pieces of plywood remain square.

Step 4: Attach Back

Once you secure each side to the bottom, attach the back with glue and screws.

First, spread glue and use clamps to hold the back in place.

The back should be placed on top of the bottom piece and inside each side. Next, drill pilot holes and secure with screws.

Step 5: Bottom Supports

Attach the front and back floor supports using pocket screws.

Again, be sure to keep everything square. Originally, I designed this TV stand to be the bottom piece of a 3 piece living room built-in.  

These runners are needed to hold a considerable amount of weight. You really only need the rear and front support – not the 3 in the middle.

Step 6: Inner Plywood Carcass

In this step, you will construct an insert to fit inside the piece you built in step 1 and 2.

Essentially, this process is similar to step 1 with no back and a middle piece. The purpose of this insert is to strengthen the bottom. Again, I designed this piece to hold a lot of weight.

First, glue the 2 middle pieces together and secure them with clamps until the glue dries. Pour the glue onto the boards and spread the glue with a brush or glue spreader.

Clamp them together and make sure they line up evenly.

Once they are lined up, you can put a few 1” brad nails near each corner if you don’t want to wait for the glue to dry to remove the clamps.

Quick Tip: If the two boards are not lined up perfectly, it’s no problem. Just get them as close as possible. Once the glue dries, you can remove 1/16” with a track saw or table saw to get them flush.

Next, drill 3 pocket holes on the bottom of each of the 2 sides. Then, secure the 2 sides to the bottom section with 1 ¼” pocket hole screws. 

Place the middle board on the lines you marked while making sure it is flush in the back.   There should be a small gap in the front., secure it with a pocket hole clamp, and drive 3 pocket hole screws on each side.

Step 7: Secure TV Cabinet Plywood Carcass

For this step, drop the insert into the bottom outer section.

Use clamps to square each side with the outer section to make sure they are flush.

Drill pilot holes, countersink, and use 4 pocket hole screws on each side at each corner to secure it in place.

Step 8: Top

It’s time to install the entertainment center top. I used plywood for this step because the top will be completely covered.

So, there was no reason to use quality wood or a design such as shiplap.

If the top for your unit will be visible, I recommend using the same wood you plan to use for the shiplap such as cypress or pine.

Regardless of what you choose, the measurements will be the same.

Step 9: Mill Wood

First, skip this step if you plan to paint your farmhouse TV stand.

As I mentioned, I used Cypress wood for the face frame, shiplap, cabinet doors, and top.

I purchased this rough cut Cypress wood from a sawmill and chose to mill it myself.

However, I encourage you to purchase dimensional lumber if you don’t own a planer or bandsaw.

Step 10: Cabinet Face Frame

Use glue and your preferred joinery method (Pocket holes or Biscuit Joiner) to attach the face frame as depicted below in the diagram.  

I chose to use my biscuit joiner simply b/c I was tired of drill pocket holes.

Clamp together with clamps until glue dries.

Then, attach the face frame to the media console front using glue and brad nails to hold it in place.

Step 11: Cabinet Doors

The rustic farmhouse entertainment center cabinet doors are simple to build and look great.

This cabinet door design consists of an outer square with a middle cross.

Also, the middle cross intersects by way of a cross halving joint. 

I used a biscuit joiner as my preferred joinery method, but pocket holes or glue/clamps work as well.

Step 12: Joinery

The joint should be half the thickness of the wood. For example, the joint needs to be cut at a depth of ¼” if the material is ½” thick.

First, cut the half lap joints for the middle cross with a circular saw or table saw.

Next, use a chisel to remove the waste as depicted below. 

Glue and clamp the middle together and use a speed square to check for square. Then, join the outer square to the middle and clamp it altogether until the glue dries.

Again, I used biscuit joinery for the cabinet doors. However, pocket holes and glue/clamps work as well.

Step 13: Decorative Hardware

As I mentioned, the decorative hardware really adds to the rustic look.

Instead of paying a premium price for black corner brackets, I purchased zinc plated steel brackets and painted them black.

Quick Tip: Make sure to scuff up the metal brackets or the paint won’t have anything to adhere to.

Also, I made a simple jig to attach the corner brackets to the DIY farmhouse tv stand doors.

This helped me place the corner brackets consistently in the same spot on all four corners.

Step 14: Cabinet Door Glass

Obviously, I did not use real glass in these cabinet doors.

Lexan proved to be a great alternative as it is stronger than plexiglass.

I encourage you to either use lexan or plexiglass instead of real glass.

Step 15: Inset Cabinet Doors

First, you should make it easier on yourself and purchase the following jigs for cabinet installation. They are VERY useful and save a ton of time.

Since each hinge manufacturer has different instructions, I encourage you to follow the instructions for the hinge you choose to buy.

You should test to ensure the cabinet doors fit before installing the hinges. 

Also, the soft close hinges are absolutely necessary if glass panes are used for the doors.   This prevents the door from slamming and causing a dangerous mess.

Once you verify the doors fit the opening, it’s time to install the cabinet hinges. 

Step 16: Door Pulls

Install the door pulls according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

Step 17: Shiplap

First, verify the measurements and cut your wood to size.

Remember, start at the bottom and work your way up. Spread glue on the back of the wood shiplap and place a piece of shiplap on the side of the entertainment center.

Place a level on top and secure it with brad nails once level. Next, place tile spacers on top of each end and repeat the process until you reach the top.

Step 18: Conclusion

I hope this instructable provided you with value. Please feel free to leave a comment if you have any questions - I'm happy to help.

Be sure to checkout my YouTube channel and my website for more DIY tutorials. 

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