Shutter Cabinet Made From Scratch

6 Materials
3 Days
Sometimes I decide to do a project based on a need and sometimes I get inspired to do a project when I have an abundance of an item. Usually it’s a pile of pallet wood that gives me that creative spark but lately my inspiration has been a stack of shutters that I picked up from a local salvage yard.

Most of the shutters are odd sizes, wider or shorter than the average window. It would be hard to find a house that these would fit on, but for DIY projects they are perfect.
What’s the plan for this shutter? A cabinet with a shutter door.

You’ll need a  quick trip to the lumber yard, or if you have scrap lumber, that’s even better.

Start with 4  –   8ft   2×3’s

2  –   6ft    1×10’s  or 1×12’s depending on how deep you’d like your cabinet shelves (I picked up by sides from my son's scrap pile)

2  –   6ft    1×2’s
thin plywood for the backing

You’ll also need a bit of crown molding for the top,  pallet wood,  scrap 2×4’s, scrap 1×4’s, scrap 1×3’s wood glue and screws.

Before getting started, if your shutter has a lip on it, cut that off so you have flat edges to work with.

Start by laying out all your wood around your shutter.  The 1×3’s are the supporting posts which double as the feet.
I used a scrap piece of wood as a pattern to mark all 4, 2×3 legs.  Cut with a chop saw. Sand well.

The total length of the 4, 2×3 posts will be   the length of the shutter + the width of a 2×3 + the width of a 2×4 + 6 inches
For the front, cut 1 2×3 the width of the shutter plus a 1/4″.  Do the same with a 2×4. The 1/4" extra is to allow the shutter door to move freely.
You’ll need 3 more of these pieces for the back…your choice, 2×3’s or 2×4’s.

The 2×4 will be sitting on top of the shutter (not shown) while one of the 2×3’s will be underneath the shutter. The reason for the wider piece of wood at the top is that it will be partially covered by crown molding.

Cut the 2 side 1×10’s (or 1×12)  the length of the shutter plus the 2×4 and 2×3 widths.
Cut 6, 1×2’s the width of your side panels.  Cut 2, 1×3’s for the bottom edges of the side panel and 2, 1×4’s for the top edge. (2×4 is not shown on top of the shutter in the above pic)

Use nails and lots of wood glue to attach all the side pieces together.
Now is the time to really start putting this thing together.  For my main joints, I used a kreg jig and more wood glue.
The back is attached in the same manner as the front (kreg jig and glue) but with extra bracing in the middle.

Match the tops and use more screws and the kreg jig to attach the sides to the front and back pieces.
I nailed a thin sheet of plywood to the back frame.

I cut 8 more 1×2’s for shelf supports.  Sand the ends, level, nail and glue into place.
This is a good time to paint the interior of the cabinet before installing the shelves.

Cut pallet wood for your shelves. Of course you could also buy wood, but I prefer the free stuff. Just make sure you give the pallet wood a good sanding.

Paint the shelves and use finish nails to nail into place.
Also installed crown molding around the top of the cabinet.  Those nails will have to be countersunk. nail holes filled and sanded and any gaps filled in with caulk.

Paint the exterior as desired.

More pallet wood planks complete the top.
Finish with hinges and a knob.
For more detailed finishing and step by step instructions make sure you click on the link below. I'm also up to 24 shutter projects, you can find all of your inspiration here.

I just finished a double shutter wardrobe if you need more storage. You can find that project here.
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  2 questions
  • Hope Hope on May 07, 2018

    Hi. I love the looks great! Did you buy those cool little 'old times looking' hinges or did you just have them laying around from another project..? If you bought them, can you tell me where..? Thanks!

  • Donna Albrecht Donna Albrecht on May 07, 2018

    Hi ! The cabinet is so darn cute and rustic looking, I love it. You could have a little hobby selling these, people pay good money for cute stuff like this with country charm. About how much did you spend making it?

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