How to make kitchen cabinets from old furniture

  4 answers
  • Janet Pizaro Janet Pizaro on Oct 11, 2017
    what specific furniture

  • Ken Ken on Oct 11, 2017
    I used a dresser in my walk-in closet as a wall-hung unit, removing the bottom and modifying it to hold up to being hung on the wall at counter height. Newer piece, medium quality oak with plywood dovetail drawers. I added some new moldings around the bottom and took care to color match the stain.

    Because your piece was not designed for kitchen use you won't have ball-bearing drawer slides, which I would have preferred in my project, and you would definitely want in a kitchen. Old furniture is probably not going to be at ideal counter height and it is not likely to find furniture 12" deep to make wall cabinets. If you have to make structural modifications it does take tools, time, materials, and imagination.

    What I am saying is that it is probably not a money saver and you will experience some inconveniences because the furniture was not made for the purpose. If you don't mind these things, I wish you well. Have a unifying theme in mind to direct you as you scour the second-hand shops, such as painting them all the same color or shades of a color or similar hue in different colors. Or maybe keeping to a colonial or art-deco style of furniture.

  • Emily Emily on Oct 11, 2017
    Back in the 1980's I bought at an antique shop a kitchen unit that probably had been hand made. Paid $60 for it. At that time we had the only "improvements" to our kitchen done by the husband of a friend. The top of the unit was an oval which I eventually used as a dressing table. The base with drawers in it the carpenter used as a "peninsula" in the space that had had a wall. This has served us well over the years but our house is more forgiving of these kind of "improvements" because it does not fit into any kind of "style" The counter space has been wonderful because prior to this we had none on the left of the sink. The drawers have been very useful. Top one for dish towels etc. Next for my winter gloves/hats. Bottom for husband's gloves/hats. And the vertical drawer to the right holds trays. What Ken says is in the main right, but the same carpenter extended the shelving in our kitchen by about 8' and did it just by adding wooden shelves and front supports. We opted for no doors.