Thursday, May 10, 2018

Storybook Kitchen Cabinets

This week's Storybook tale is all about kitchen cabinets. When you're working in a dollhouse, especially one with unusual spaces to fill, you often have to make your own. As is turns out, I really enjoyed the process, and I love the feeling they've created in the kitchen!


This wall, the one that divides the kitchen from the living room, is one I added to the kit to create the separate rooms. The return is not very deep, and the angled door opening created some space challenges. When I drew out the plan for both the upper and lower cabinets, my measurements had to be spot on.



To make the arched cabinet fronts, I employed the Cricut. I transferred my upper cabinet measurements into the Design Space using a solid rectangle, then using smaller rectangles connected to circles, I sliced out the openings. I cut three sets out of 1/16" chipboard.





Making the box with the shelves was pretty straightforward. I carved a set of three drawers out of laminated 1/2" scrap wood for the bottom of the left and right cupboards. Then, using 1/8" x 1/8" basswood strip and fancy toothpicks, I made a plate rack for the lower center section.



I added beadboard, wallpaper, lace edging, textured vine stickers and crown molding to give them a real cottage feel. I did consider doors with glass, but quickly decided open cabinets were the way to go for this build.



Next were the lower cabinets. Like the built in sink cabinet, I did not want functioning drawers or doors. Just simple boxes with a toe kick, wallpaper fronts edged in 1/8" x 1/16" trim to suggest drawers/doors, aged bronze hardware, and the same "stone" countertops as the sink cabinet.






The end wall in the kitchen was a challenge as there is only 3-1/2" of usable space, and that is where the fridge will go. Since the fridge is 2" wide, only an upper cabinet was going to work. I modeled it after the other upper cabinet unit, but added crown molding to the bottom instead of more drawers.



I bought the Phoenix Models gas stove and fridge kits for another project, but thought they would be wonderful in the Storybook. They are compact and perfect for a kitchen where space is at a premium. Actually putting them together is going to be interesting. Apparently, you use quick set epoxy, and the stove has a million pieces! Figuring out what to paint in what colors and what to paint before and after assembly is certainly going to challenge my brain!



There are lots of decorating opportunities for such a small space, and with the large kitchen windows, being able to view them should be easy.




Here is the kitchen with cabinets in dry fit. I am loving the layout and the amount of floor space. I may even have room for a small prep table in the center!





Now that the foundation pieces for the kitchen are planned or finished, I have to decide whether to assemble the appliances or continue into the living and dining rooms with built ins. I have several days to mull it over, as Mother's Day weekend is FULL of family activities. Which, if I am lucky, may include a trip up to CJN Miniatures in Edmonds, WA. Fingers crossed!

And to every nurturer, whether you've give birth or not, whatever your chromosomes, ~Happy Mothers Day~! I hope the love you've given to anyone comes back to you seven fold!

xo xo,
Jodi

41 comments:

  1. What a wonderful kitchen! Those cabinets are just perfect. You make it look so easy. My next project is a kitchen and I am thinking to make my own cabinets as well as I feel inspired by you. Let´s see how it goes. I can´t wait to see all those little treasures I am sure you have waiting to fill those cabinets. I hope you have a terrific Mother´s day weekend!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Alex! I am happy that you like them, too! The hard part is thinking through the process. For example, will the side pieces be glued to the top of the back piece, or will they butt up to it. Depending on the answer, your overall measurements have to take the material thickness into account. Cutting things square is also a challenge, and glue management is also essential - dried glue globs can make shelf pieces not seat properly, so being careful each step of the way is key. Things I have learned the hard way! :O)
      Drawing the cabinets out on graph paper helps me to get a real idea of the look and also to settle on one of the billion ideas swimming in my head (and on my Pinterest boards).
      I am so happy that I have inspired you to make your own cabinets! It is so satisfying to know if you can dream it, you can do it! I can't wait to see your kitchen!

      Delete
  2. Jodi you have once again, surprised me with your CLEVER arranging. The kitchen is already Super Charming and easy to Work in, Cook in and to Look At! Who wouldn't wish to race down to the kitchen each morning, to be surrounded by this much Prettiness? And what a joy to have such a cosy, feminine and functional heart of the home, with this much storage too!
    The open cupboards are eye-candy and you were right to save the vintage appliances for this project because they have made themselves entirely at home! ❤❤❤

    On a sad note though, CJN Miniatures store had a major fire recently and most of Connie's stock has been burned or smoke damaged. Connie is still pretty shaken and her store is in tatters :(

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Elizabeth! I admire your work so much, and if you like it, I know I have done something worthwhile!
      I am making banana bread today, and I wish I was doing so in this kitchen - it just seems like the smell of baking banana bread would be so at home here!
      Thank you for letting me know about Connie. I am so sad for her. My husband and brother are contractors, so I am going to be in touch with her once I talk to the boys to see if we can all offer any assistance. I can't even imagine what she's been feeling this past week, and what she has to deal with moving forward. I hope there is some way we can help.

      Delete
    2. YOU have a very kind and very generous soul Jodi ❤

      Delete
  3. Jodi these cabinets are wonderful. So glad you gave the uppers cornicing.. I think this detail really finishes off a cabinet. Love the use of decorative toothpicks for the plate rack too. I don't think you need to add a thing. They are wonderful just as they are. I agree that it looks like you might have room for a butcher's block or small table in the middle too! Loving this build! :D

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Sam! I am happy that you like the cabinets and how the build is going! It is so much fun when the ideas fly at you, and the efforts to make them happen go relatively smoothly. I am a sucker for moldings, and have said many prayers asking to help me understand miters. I "think" I finally get it now, and I hope I retain the information!

      Delete
  4. Hello Jody,
    Brilliant floorplan. I think you used the space very well and the design of your cabinetry is fantastic. The arched opening and the colors you used make for a very bright and pleasant kitchen. Having made a plate rack I know they can be tricky, and you did a fantastic job of yours. What a great kitchen. There are fantastic kitchen sets out there, but I always love it when talented miniaturists build cabinets from scratch!
    Big hug
    Giac

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks you, Giac! I am so happy that you like them! I am truly a maker at heart, because nothing thrills me more than knowing "I Can"! The sense of accomplishment is addictive, as I am sure you are well aware! :O) The plate rack was fun to try - I have made two of them in the past, but used copper wire. I was not happy with how the wires did not keep their shape, so the toothpicks were a welcomed change. Drilling the holes into such tiny and fragile material was a huge challenge, but I imagine I'll get better with practice.
      Thanks so much for your encouragement! It makes my day to read your comments!

      Delete
  5. I am most impressed with how you used your Cricut to cut out your shapes. I've not ventured into the design space. I have an older Cricut and a Mac and I could never get the two to connect, but this is a genus idea. The kitchen is really cute and so well designed.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Ann! I do enjoy using the Cricut when it comes to making cuts that would not be as clean by hand - I am not steady with the scroll saw, so I always have so much clean up sanding to do when I use it. I have had many issues with the Cricut, but have managed through much trial and error to work around it's shortcomings. I am happy you like the kitchen layout!

      Delete
  6. Design queen wins again. Just lovely ideas and beautifully made real.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ha ha! You are too funny! :O)
      Thanks Marilyn! I am happy you like everything!

      Delete
  7. Esta quedando un conjunto maravilloso.
    Un abrazo

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. ¡Gracias, Marian! ¡Me alegra que te guste!

      Delete
  8. Hi Jodi,
    The kitchen is wonderfully planned and the cabinets are marvelous. You really are a great "carpenter" and use your tools expertly.
    Happy coming Mother's day!
    Hugs, Drora

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Drora! It is so much fun to keep trying, in spite of all the failures, because eventually, you figure out just what you want and just what to do. I'd be lost without my tools!
      I am not sure when you celebrate Mother's Day in Israel, but I hope you have a nice day with your kids on Sunday, too! :O)

      Delete
  9. Un gran trabajo, has avanzado con un resultado espectacular, felicidades:-)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Gracias Rosa Maria! Estoy feliz de que los gabinetes se hayan unido y funcionen muy bien en la cocina. ¡Será muy divertido llenarlos con maravillosos tesoros tanto comprados como hechos a mano!

      Delete
  10. Such a cute kitchen Jodi! This is going to be such a lovely space.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Shannon! I am really looking forward to adding all the little treasures I have purchased, and to making many others to fill the space!

      Delete
  11. Gorgeous uppers and your lower cabinets are so cute! You're so creative! I would never think of using wallpaper on the cabinets or using wood to create borders that look like doors and drawers.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Sheila! It is so much fun to see cabinets you like online or in magazines and then take the idea to your own place. Since the uppers will be filled, I tried to keep them more simple, but since the lowers won't have much to display, I tried to make them a bit more colorful. I hope the plan works out in the end, and there is a nice balance!

      Delete
  12. Clever cricut usage, I'll remember that.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you! The one success tip I can give on cutting 1/16" chipboard with the Cricut is: You must prevent slipping on the mat. To make the mat ultra sticky, I brush on a coat of Aleene's Tack-It Over & Over Liquid Glue and let it dry really well. The chipboard does not shift with this stuff. It is a bit of work to remove the chipboard from the mat after the cut, and to remove the dried glue when it's time to start fresh. But, the benefit is that if you are willing, you can use the same mats over and over and over and over.

      Delete
  13. Hi Jodi! Your little kitchen is looking so Sweet and Well-appointed! I think you will have perfect spaces for your displays! The cabinets are looking wonderful! And you whipped them up out of "thin air"! I am very impressed with the decorations you added to the fronts... it all looks really lovely! You are getting a lot of "mileage" out of this tiny house!!! :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Betsy! I am happy that you like the kitchen so far! With Russ working out of town four days each week, I have little cooking, cleaning and TV watching to do, so I seem to get a lot accomplished! :O) I miss him so much, but at least I have something to keep my mind and hands busy!

      Delete
  14. Creo que has usado el especio que tenias de una manera excelente. Tienes muchas posibilidades de colocar bonitas cosas a la vista. Me ha gustado el diseño de los armarios. Gran trabajo.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. ¡Gracias, Isabel! ¡Estoy feliz de que te guste el espacio y los armarios! ¡Ahora espero poder encontrar o hacer las cosas correctas para llenar y mejorarlas!

      Delete
  15. Very pretty kitchen. The cabinets are unique and fit in well!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Grandmommy! I am very happy with the look that is happening with the cottage! Just what I had dreamed of!

      Delete
  16. Hi Jodi what a clever and pretty kitchen. The colour scheme is SO pretty, like the Gelati at the icecream van -good enough to eat LOL. I really like the curved upper sections of the cabinets and using lace for the pretty trim is so simple, clever and effective.
    Thanks for sharing so many fabulous pictures.
    Anna x

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Anna! Gelati? That sounds delicious!
      I am happy that you like the curved openings, too! They just say "cottage" to me. The things I love most and that make my heart flutter when seeing miniatures are the thoughtful details, like the lace shelf edging. I am trying to be as cognizant as possible of details like these in this build. I want so much to be delighted with it, so please do let me know if you see something I can improve upon!
      I am happy you are here to see the photos and share in the journey with me! <3

      Delete
  17. Hi, Jodi - I knew that I would love your lower cabinets. You've achieved such a cozy but efficient look with the wallpaper accent and the suggestion of doors and drawers. I truly love the way the upper cabinets have turned out; the plate rack and the arched openings are works of art. I must admit that your skill with tools (and measurements) just boggles my mind. I so admire your talent and the precision of your designs. I'm such a haphazard builder, probably because I use only styrofoam, which is so FORGIVING of errors. I agree that there appears to be room in the kitchen for a prep table - that will be a fun piece! The Storybook kitchen is coming together so beautifully; you make it hard to wait for more progress!
    Marjorie

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks so much, Marjorie! I am happy the cabinets appeal to you, and knowing you're excited for what's next truly enhances the experience for me, as well!! I have a vision of the look and feel I'd like to explore, but getting there is tricky - I tend to second guess everything!
      As for my skill with tools - lets just say I am learning to learn to become more brave! :O) I still catch myself avoiding certain things, and instead of opting for what I truly want to try, my mind says "what's the easiest way". When I am aware of that thought, I try my best to fight the fear! But often, Styrofoam IS the best material, and the way in which you employ it is masterfully artistic! Don't go changin' - your ingenuity is so delightfully inspiring to me!
      I hope the next chapter will have been worth the wait! :O)

      Delete
  18. Beautiful work on the cabinets. :D I highly recommend Devcon 5 minute epoxy. Yes, you'll be holding the pieces for a few minutes, but it gives you some time to adjust before it sets. Also, paint as much as possible beforehand and then scrape away where you bond the pieces. The Phoenix kits are sturdy, but I made the error of using E6000 and it did not hold well. I have to go back and re-glue part of my retro stove (it's in the lighthouse if you want a gander), but it should be relatively easy to fix with the 5 minute epoxy. Just be warned, it stinks to high heaven! :\ Oh, and use a self-etching primer for metal (also stinks).

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Brae! The tips are most welcome and boost my enthusiasm to venture into the project! I have Loctite Quick Set Epoxy (5 minute), Zinser Bulls Eye 1-2-3 spray primer (recommended on the Phoenix web site), and spray painting weather has arrived! Now I need the mindset to study all of the instructions and find my focus!
      I just had a look at the photos from Walnut Bay Light - so much fun to revisit! The stove turned out amazing! If I can even come close with mine it will have been worth the angst! I also noticed the sink and the fridge - now I am asking myself if I channeled these things from you or if I have been subliminally influenced! Maybe a little of both!

      Delete
  19. Spectacular progress. I love the layout, colours, and the fact that you have space to add something more if you wish.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Megan! I am actually surprised that the kit has yielded as much space as it has. That is not the case with so many of my past builds, and it is disappointing to have to edit so many ideas. I am hopeful that I'll be able to jam many of them into the Storybook this time around!

      Delete
  20. Wow! So amazing what you've been able to do with the Cricut!!! I love the arches on the uppers and the wallpaper application inside. They look very sturdy despite being made out of paper. And the lowers came together perfectly. The trim work is the perfect faux finish! Hard to believe you did these all by hand. The next time someone asks about hand making cabinets I'm going to point them to this post ;) Can't wait to see the appliances in, I'm just loving the layout!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Christine! Sadly, I use the Cricut much less than I had anticipated when I purchased it. But luckily, I am learning it's curves, so I expect I'll harness it's power much more in the future!
      The 1/16" chipboard is really wonderful to work with. It is pretty sturdy on it's own (especially when you get a few layers of paint on it), but once it's attached to the wooden cabinet boxes, it's really solid.
      I am really enjoying the challenge of making everything, though the nice pieces in my stash drawers are a little miffed! The more cabinets I make, the more I learn about the "right" and "wrong" ways to go about them!
      I am happy you like the cottage kitchen, and hope you'll find the living and dining rooms interesting, too!

      Delete