Sunday, September 9, 2012

The Media Cabinet

We got rid of our particle board media cabinet after we moved out of our apartment that we had rented when we first moved here.  I had originally bought it at Target when it was on sale, and we'd had it for about 5 years.  It wasn't in horrible shape, but it was black, and didn't fit the 36" TV we had purchased afterwards.  The house we were moving into had no space for it and the only place for the huge TV was the fireplace hearth (not my first choice since it mean we couldn't use it!). Then we upgraded to a flat screen TV that went above the fireplace, and since the room was really overcrowded with my large sectional sofa, we didn't even contemplate another media cabinet

When we move to this house last year, the TV went back above the fireplace because it made the most sense.  But I've been really tired of cords and junk surrounding my fireplace.  Also, there is no storage in the living room.  So we started looking at media cabinets to store the electronics and our 'stuff'.  I saw this media cabinet at Pottery Barn and knew it was what I was looking for:

Pretty, right?  Well, it should be.  Just the tower is $949!!  Don't forget the $75 shipping and sales tax - 8.25%  in my county.  Add insult to injury, I realistically need 2 of the towers.  My calculator puts that at $2204.60 for the total cost.  YIKES!

Of course, I knew The Builder could make it for a fraction of the cost.  And to seal the deal, Ana White came out with the plans for it!!  How could we not make this?
Source: ana-white.com via Elona on Pinterest

The total cost of my supplies was $190 - for TWO!!.  That's the lumber, hardware, supplies and paint.  We used oak plywood, which technically wasn't necessary because we're painting ours.  I would have adored to have stained it to let the beautiful wood grain come through, but my sofa is large and brown and it swallows up the room. It wouldn't have saved us much to have downgraded either.  We chose a high gloss so it will clean easily.  I have no doubt it will get much use from our little people and so it needed to be a kid friendly finish.  The Euro hinges that the plans suggested are great.  I didn't want a lot of hardware showing.  The handles are something I found at Pier 1 last spring (when we first started talking about building a media cabinet) and are absolutely perfect for this room.


A few tips we discovered:  Home Depot has better prices on Euro hinges than Lowe's - Lowe's sold them per piece at the same cost we bought a pair for at Home Depot.  However, Lowe's had better quality lumber for some of the sizes we needed.  I'm lucky enough to have both stores nearby.  Also, we wanted to combine the two towers into one media cabinet.  Since our TV is mounted to the wall, there was no need for the other media piece and I felt two separate towers would look funny side by side.  Thankfully, The Builder is...well, the builder!!  So he was able to easily modify Ana's plans to join the two together.  He also put in vents in the back so the electronics can breath and not overheat.  We've had this problem in the past with the other media cabinet we used.

I love how this turned out!  There's one more shelf that needs to go in, and of course, accessories, but I think it turned out just beautiful!