I finally gathered enough courage yesterday to remake one of the big drawer fronts. If you’ll remember, the final decision on how to make the gold leaf look balanced on the peninsula was to keep all of the small top drawers plain, with flat fronts, and just add brass cup pulls. Then on the four big drawer fronts, I would remake those so that they have recessed panels, as well as the same gold leaf treatment, to match the cabinet doors.
Here’s how they looked yesterday before I got started…
And here’s a poorly done mock up of how I want them to look when I’m all finished remaking the four big drawer fronts.
The process was very similar to what I used to remove the center panels on the four middle upper cabinet doors to create glass front cabinet doors.
I didn’t take a picture of the drawer front in process, but here’s a view of the cabinet door before I cut out the center panel. I simply used a piece of lumber to create a fence, held it tightly in place with a couple of C-clamps, and then used my Dremel MultiMax with the blade right along the fence to cut out the panel.
That’s the exact same thing I did with the drawer front in order to cut out the center area and create a frame.
Once I got the inside edges of the frame all sanded and cleaned up, I used it to trace the shape/size of the opening onto a piece of 1/8-inch plywood (found with the stock cabinets at Home Depot), and a piece of 1/4-inch MDF, and I cut out both pieces using my jigsaw. I then used wood glue to glue the plywood onto the MDF, placed the thick piece of oak I just removed from the drawer front on top simply for weight and support, and then clamped them together until the glue dried.
And when I removed the clamps and the scrap piece of oak, I was left with the plywood firmly attached to the MDF. As you can see, I didn’t do a very detailed job in cutting out the plywood or the MDF. I had the wrong blade in my jigsaw, and it did a real hack job on those edges. But since they would be covered up, I wasn’t too concerned.
Next I placed the panel inside the frame…
And then I cut 1/4-inch quarter round to go around the perimeter of the panel. I ordered the quarter round on Ebay. It’s one of the only two places I could find that had quarter round in the 1/4-inch size, and the other online place charged double the price. Eight pieces of 36-inch-long quarter round cost about $23 with shipping.
I attached the quarter round using wood glue on both flat sides of the quarter round so that it would be glued to the frame as well as the panel.
And with that, the rebuilding of the front of the drawer was finished! It’ll still need some detail work, like caulking and wood filling, but the basic design is done.
The back side is another story. It’s pretty ugly.
Before I finish that off, I’m going to put a bead of wood glue into the cracks and let it dry completely. Then I have two ways I can finish that off. The first is to fill all of the cracks with wood filler, and then sand the whole thing perfectly smooth. The second is to cover the whole back with very thin wood veneer. I have a roll of veneer that is really thin and has an adhesive backing on it, so it would be a very easy fix. And really, the only part that will ever show is about the top three inches. The rest of it will always be hidden by the actual drawer box that it’ll be attached to.
And here’s my new drawer front shown with the cabinet doors that it’s supposed to look like, and with the other drawers that I haven’t gotten to yet.
That’s a pretty good match, right?!
What’s interesting is that the new design creates an optical illusion of the drawer front being shorter than the other flat panel drawer fronts. Can you see that too, or is it just me? Last night when I finished this first one, I stood it up like that, and kind of panicked. I thought, “Oh my gosh, I’ve made it too short!!!” It took me a couple of seconds to realize that would have been impossible since the outside frame is the original drawer front.
One down, three to go.
In other news, I’ve gotten about 2/3 of my floor sanded (with the exception of the areas under the feet — I’m dreading tackling those areas), and I’ve also gotten quite a bit of the tile done on the fourth wall. I just have the herringbone to go, but of course, it’s the hardest.
I took those while I was sitting on the floor working on my drawer front. I’m short, but not that short.