Wednesday 17 October 2012

Designing Custom Cabinetry for Bulit Ins

Custom built ins have been popular for many years now and for good reason. With a carefully and well thought out design, built ins are not only great functionally but with proper lighting and plenty of accessories, they can also add an element of sophistication to any space.

My husband approves of our casual yet classy man cave.

Prior to commencing the custom built ins on my own basement, there was an abundance of planning that went into the design. We initially contemplated purchasing a shelving unit that would be able to come with us should we decide to eventually move house. How long you plan on staying in your home should always be a consideration when looking at your options for any design project. 

 The first thing I did was source photographs that I liked on websites like houzz and pinterest. I looked at the function and really thought about the purpose that I wanted it to serve. Then I drew a rough diagram of how I wanted them to look (above).  *Note - this drawing is not to scale nor is it fancy, rather a general idea.

We left out all the lighting components and cable so the electrician could wire everything up.
Having my electrician in early on was key in the planing phase to ensure that all the cable and lighting boxes were installed. My husband was left to work out the entertainment system and surround sound speakers, as this was his motivation for giving the go ahead with the project, I just wanted it all to look spectacular!  So, it was a win - win for both of us in the end.

The entire unit is made out of drywall.  The doors were designed by me, custom made by my carpenter and  taken to Paint it Like New to be primed & spray painted professionally to match the colour of the unit itself.  The paint colour is Willow CC542 by Benjamin Moore.  Very rich and intense, I just love it!

Grooves in the frame allowed for the mirror insert.

Mirror inserted and sealed. This is a look from the opposite side.

Storage inside the cupboards is mainly for board games, photo albums and DVDs. For that reason I didn't want to see inside the cupboards but I also didn't want them completely solid as I felt that would've been too heavy looking. Therefore, I choose to place mirrors in behind the patterned 'X' to bounce off light and add a more sophisticated and modern look.

No hardware for the doors either, they open easily enough and the clean look is better.
Thanks to my subscriber Carol who asked me to write an article about designing built ins, I am extremely happy with the end result.  I am also proud to say that this particular photograph above has been added to nearly 1300 ideabooks on houzz, so I'm very happy that others are enjoying it and getting inspiration from my design as well!

To see an earlier post with more of this basement renovation click here.  Also, I will soon be posting about a recent visit I made to Fairview Hi-Fi in Burlington as they were instrumental in helping us plan the audio portion of this project.  There are so many fabulous options for man caves and theatre rooms these days, stay tuned to find out what I learned!

If you are looking for inspiration, please contact me and I will be happy to help you.  E-mail me:

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