Before & After: Simple Shelves Become a Stylish Cabinet

Most of us have a set of shelves that are decidedly more functional than they are fashionable. This shabby set survived the move into our new house and managed to look even shabbier sitting on our brand new tile floor and adjacent to a freshly painted wall. It only took me three years but it finally got a makeover more befitting its new station in life.

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The epiphany came as I was sketching plans for a cabinet and realized that, duh, a cabinet is basically a set of shelves with a back and a door! Of course, as these things tend to go, it got a bit more complicated than that. The biggest challenge was designing the top to fit into its final resting place, which is sort of an odd-shaped knee wall nook with a slanted ceiling. I also had a large blank area on the right-hand side of the door, which turned out to be a perfect place for a series of false drawers.

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All in all this project didn't cost me much. I had most of the wood lying around and only had to purchase the hardware and some of the trim pieces. The biggest disappointment is that it is tucked so far back into the upstairs bathroom that no one ever gets to see it.

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(Images: Richard Popovic)

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