This is a sideboard buffet cabinet, or a simple stand-alone storage cabinet, made from plywood and pine boards. The countertop is a solid slab of maple, although it can be made from almost anything (such as dimensional lumber). There are two different videos on my YouTube channel to show how the cabinet was made separate from the slab countertop. I modified plans from the Ana White blog, the original plans can be found here: Planked Wood Sideboard
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6 – 2x4x8 feet long
7 – 1x4x8 feet long
1 – 1x6x6 feet long
1 – sheet ¼” plywood
1 – sheet ¾” plywood
10 feet of 4 ¼” base molding
Step 1: Cutting Boards to Size
I decided to start with the sides of the cabinet. When working with dimensional lumber, I usually start by cross-cutting the lengths I need then removing the rounded corners or planing the thickness after. That way I'm not struggling with 8 foot long pieces at the table saw or planer. I took my side pieces to the table saw to adjust the width and remove the rounded corners. These end up 1 inch thick and 3 inches wide. I also cut my 1x4 boards to length. These get pocket holes and are glued up into side panels. The pocket holes are not necessary though, you could just do a panel glue up, or use a biscuit jointer or Domino for alignment.
Step 2: Pocket Holes!
I laid out my sides to see where I need pocket holes, drill each piece and put it back in place to keep track as I go. Each joint gets glued the screwed. Clamps help prevent the pieces from separating as each pocket hole screw goes in.
Each side is set aside for glue to dry.
Step 3: Panel and Side Assembly
I wish I had not used pocket holes on the panel glue up, but it works. Since this project I have used dominos and like that a lot better for board alignment and strength. However you do it, glue the 1x4 boards into a panel. Then, after it is dry, trim sides to exact size and glue/screw into the 2x4 side frame. There are other ways of doing this of course, but this works. Also, I was not worried about the wood matching as this is a painted project.
Step 4: Plywood
I used a homemade straight edge guide to cut the plywood cabinet bottom and dividers. The small boards clamped on the end here will become the support at the back/top of the cabinet so I am using them to set the distance while screwing in the dividers.
Step 5: Carcass Assembly
The long 2x4s for the base are only cut to length and do not need to be cleaned up because they will be covered by baseboard molding. More glue and pocket hole screws hold the long stretchers to the sides.
Step 6: Doors
Because I went away from the original plans, I had to make up the sizes of doors. I wanted two larger doors on the outsides and two smaller doors for the middle cabinet. I used a Festool Domino Joiner for the doors but there are many options for making doors from pocket holes to mortise and tenon joints.
After my door frames were dry I took them out of the clamps, did a little sanding, then took them to the router table. I used a rabbeting bit to make a rabbet on the inside for a panel to sit in. The outside of each door gets a round over at the router then each door is flipped over and the inside gets a rabbet to hold a panel. The panel can be plywood, but I used more 1x4 boards (planed thin) to keep a consistent look with the sides. I used European hidden door hinges which need a 35mm Forstner bit to drill two flat-bottomed holes in the back of each door.
Step 7: Drawers
As with other steps, there are many ways of making drawers. These are cut from particle board (because I had extra on hand) and plywood, pocket holes are drilled on the back and front where they will not be seen due to the drawer front, then glued and screwed together. The plywood bottom then gets glued and nailed into the rabbet at the bottom. I like this method and modified it from the Jay Bates video here: Jay Bates; Strong, Quick, Drawer Construction
Step 8: Drawer Fronts and Slides
I made a face frame with thin pine boards. These are cut to size to run across the front and up each divider. I cut two scrap pieces exactly 20 in long to space the drawer slide from the bottom of the cabinet. With these resting against the side of the cabinet, you are pretty much guaranteed to have a parallel drawer slide placement. After the drawer slide is screwed into the side of the cabinet the drawer can be positioned using spacers then screwed to the drawer slide moving from front to back. Makes more sense in the video...
After some trial and error, I got my door hinges screwed into place and drawers placed on the slides. I used more pine boards to make drawer fronts. each of these got a roundover to match the doors. After the drawer fronts get screwed into place I remove each of them to paint separately and drill holes for the drawer handles.
Step 9: Trimming It Out
The molding was cut to length and mitered then nailed in place and a 1/8th-inch plywood back was installed to complete the cabinet. The doors and drawers were then taken off and the hardware covered with tape for painting.
Step 10: Painting
I used a Wagner paint sprayer which I find the EASIEST way to paint my projects. You may have noticed I painted everything inside and out the same color. I was going to paint the inside white, but ultimately I was too lazy to go back and fix the overspray.
Step 11: Weathering
After the paint dried I did my best to "weather" everything with flat black paint. I got a little paint on my brush and used a technique called dry brushing on the edges and high points. I like how this came out and it helps with the finished look of the cabinet.
Step 12: Final Assembly
I measured the center of the drawer fronts then marked the right spacing to attach my drawer handles. I screwed the handles in place then attached the drawer fronts to the drawer boxes with the screws hidden inside of the drawers.
Step 13: Finding It a Home!
I felt like adding the top would make it too heavy to move into the house. We moved it in place and brought in the finished top and attached it with screws from the underneath. Then I brought in the drawers and everything was finally assembled! If you are interested in the slab countertop there is a video below.
Step 14: Putting It All Together
I added the countertop and drawers to finish it!
Step 15: Watch Both Videos on My YouTube Page!
There are two videos for this build. The one I have not talked about here is about making the live edge countertop. Go check them both out!
Thank you for looking at my Instructable! I hope this helps you in making your own custom cabinets!