Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Building A Media Center: The Countertop

Hello all you lovely people who are stopping by!  You make my day!  I'm delighted with each and every new visitor (and my dear family) who stops by to see what this regular ol' mom is up to.  And what my crazy family is up to.  And I mean crazy in a good way. 

And here's hoping I make the day of those who requested photos of our media center.  It's almost done!  Picture me doing a happy dance!  Okay, don't picture it.  It's not pretty.  But I'll still happy dance in the privacy of my own home.  In front of my pretty media center. 

New to the media center adventures? You can follow along here:
Chapter 1: The Planning
Chapter 2:  Installing the First Cabinet (Pantry)
Chapter 3: Installing the Base Cabinets
Chapter 4: Installing the Drawers

Let's catch up on the new countertop.

Biker Boy went and picked up a 12 foot long maple butcher block countertop from Lumber Liquidators.  Why did we get it there?  Well, we don't have an IKEA close by.  They had 12 foot long butcher block countertops and that's what I wanted.   Plus, it was the cheapest one around and still good looking.  We are very pleased with it.  Biker Boy put it in on the trailer behind the minivan and brought it home.  It weighs 150 pounds.  Biker Boy and I lugged in the house and positioned it on the base.  We decided one side was better than the other to be the topside. 

It fit!  But we knew we would have to cut off a little bit and round the edges.  We could just see some little kid walking out of their bedroom and bashing into a hard sharp edge.  I put blankets over the hard edges when we went to bed that night.  And it was sitting on sawhorses at night too.  Just in case.

The next day Biker Boy got out his belt sander, hand sander, and router and went to town.

He put a lovely round edge on the corner.  It's a little more bash friendly than a sharp edge.  He routed the top edges to make them round and not so sharp for when we're working at the desk portion.  And he notched out an area where it hits the pantry.  My man is amazing!  I told him over and over. I helped heft that countertop in and out of the house quite a few times.  Let's just say....my arms are telling me.  It wasn't that hard though. 

Biker Boy built a brace for the desk end out of some left over plywood. He mimicked the wave of the shelf brackets up above the desk.  Wanna know how he did it?  Wish I would have took photos. He traced a tandem wheel and a skylight.  Yep.  He's not real happy with the bracket and doesn't think the style of it goes with the whole media center.  But I like it, my man made it.  And I like using things we have laying around.  It's perfect.

We covered the countertop and bracket in 4 coats of poly...sanding in between some of the coats and before the final coat with fine sandpaper.  And yes...I helped with this part.  Oh, I almost forgot.  Biker Boy drilled 2 holes for cables and such. The hole bit was a bugger.  It took forever and our house smelled like burning wood.  But it's done. Biker Boy also installed some 2x2 ledges for the counter to sit on where there weren't base cabinets.  See?

And that counter is a thing of beauty.  It reminds me of a bowling alley. And yes, I'll admit it.  I've stroked that counter and told it how pretty it is.  You just might too if it was yours, so don't judge.  And I may or may have not sat on the couch for 15 minutes last night just admiring the whole empty media center.  Doesn't it just give you thrills to look at something you or a love one crafted?   

Let's just have another picture, because I took a few or more.  Pictures just don't do it justice.  I've got to get some in daylight!  Except it's cloudy and snowing right now, so it's not really daylight.  So you get night photos.

Hello pretty, pretty media center.  I love you.  You're my most favorite thing in the house.  Not counting the humans...I love my hubby and kids more.  And maybe the dog.  But for material things....I love you my pretty media center.

Now we have to wait 3 days for the finish to properly cure and dry.  3 Days!  At least I have three days to admire the beauty of the media center without anything on it.  Then I'll clutter it up.  Poor thing.  I'll have to try and utilize that hidden storage and keep things off the desk.  Think I can do it?  I can't commit to it.  It'll be a challenge.

So you'll just have to wait for the final reveal.  And it won't be final, because everything is always a work in progress here. 

Anyone else ever build something out of kitchen cabinets and a countertop....besides a kitchen?  Anyone else loving butcher block?  Or hating it? 

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