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Victrola to Serving Station

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Hubby was tired of storing this old Victrola. It was in good working order, but no one wanted it. We couldn't even give it away. He was going to put it by the side of the road to see if there were any takers, or eventually donate it to our fire pit. Always ready to save a piece of old furniture I told him I wanted to keep it and make it over as a storage/serving station. Initially he wasn't that thrilled with the idea, but he let me bring it into the studio for it's remake.
  • victrola to serving station, painted furniture
Not thinking of the future, I didn't take a "before" picture. This picture was taken after I repaired the broken/missing applique pieces on the left side.
Because this piece is going to be used as a buffet, server and warming area, I wanted a top that would withstand heat, and I wanted it flush with the wood, so that meant routing out the area where the slate tiles would be placed.
  • victrola to serving station, painted furniture
I chose the largest slate tile I could find at Lowes without breaking my budget. I positioned the slate on the center of the cover and scored the wood with a utility knife making sure to stay close to the edge of the tile for a tight fit.
  • victrola to serving station, painted furniture
Once that was done I set my router at 3/8" depth to accommodate the thickness of the tile and began removing the wood from the center.
  • victrola to serving station, painted furniture
I haven't used a router in years, so it took some time to get reacquainted with the process. I found it easier to rout out a line grid and then go back with a chisel and remove the 1/4 - 1/2" pieces. I suffer from carpal tunnel, so this method gave my hands and wrists a break.
The original purpose for this cabinet is to house my deep fryer. I wanted to be able to use it, but also to not have the oil splatter on the wall. No matter how careful one is, it always splatters. The recessed shelf and the raised top solve that problem. It's easily cleanable too!
After I gutted the cabinet, I installed shelf bracers 5" below the top of the cabinet. Hubby cut a 1/2" piece of plywood to act as a shelf and another piece of slate tile was inserted as a heat barrier.
  • victrola to serving station, painted furniture
Opening up the victrola area now leaves me with plenty of room for my pitcher as shown or my deep fryer. I removed the 33 rpm record dividers from the cubbies on either side opening up that area for more storage.
Hubby stepped in and helped by routing out the panels on either side and cutting the tiles to fit. His task was a bit harder than mine as jigs had to be made up to ensure that the edges remained straight. The tiles were set in place with tile cement, and a black vinyl grout was used to fill small gaps around the tiles for cleaning and sanitary purposes.
Spring hinges were added to the speaker panel, allowing it to become a drop down door, giving easy access. A piece of 1/4" plywood was cut to size and placed behind the decorative wood for support.
Swivel wheels were attached to the cabinet, making it easier to move it from one room to another when entertaining. It's really quite versatile.
Finishing Touches ~
A little cleaning of the wood and a coat of Briwax Dark Brown Polish and it looks like new!
I found a picture of a French Cafe on the internet that I liked and printed that out on printable iron-on cloth that I attached to a piece of heavy fabric. I placed that where the speaker cloth was and placed it between the fascia and the backer board. I selected 2 areas of the first picture as focal points for the doors on either side and painted a cluster of grapes on each using water colors so that they would be the same texture as the printed piece. Once attached to their backing cloth, I used a spray adhesive to mount them on the door front.
So what do you think? Does my hubby like it? Yea or Nay

To see more: http://blog.countryroadsbyjoanie.net/2014/04/victrola-to-serving-station.html

Got a question about this project?

  • Itakins
    Itakins Ireland

    Fantastic re-purposing ......it looks great,and very useful.

    • Itakins
      Itakins Ireland

      @Joan Hurst-Thank you kindly.Sorry about the site..!! But I do appreciate your comment and attempted comment. :)

  • Allison K
    Allison K Sandy Hook, CT

    Okay, this is one of the most (if not THE most) beautiful things I have seen in the way of a furniture renovation!!! I am jealous beyond belief! If I were in your presence I would bow down at your feet because you are obviously queen of the furniture

    • Joan Hurst
      Joan Hurst Colebrook, CT

      @@Allison K Wow! I don't know if I deserve all that praise, but it sure made me feel good! Thanks so much. You've given me courage to move onto my next project which is revamping a retired (still functional) 1950 vintage pump house into a chique

  • Liz
    Liz Lakewood, NJ

    incredible repurposing!

    • Joan Hurst
      Joan Hurst Colebrook, CT

      @@Liz Thanks for sharing your thoughts. I'm thrilled that so many people like it!

  • Allison K
    Allison K Sandy Hook, CT

    Oh, no, you definitely deserve the praise. I can't wait to see your next piece! I'm usually a purist and I like wood to be wood but, if it's done right, paint and other options can be amazing.

    • Allison K
      Allison K Sandy Hook, CT

      @Joan Hurst Another beautiful transformation!

  • Itakins
    Itakins Ireland

    @Kelly S-Thank you kindly.If it's the final picture,the floor is a French oak,any other indoor pics it's just good old terracotta tiles.

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