Thursday, March 20, 2014

DIY Baking Station

As promised in the last post, I'm back with a full tutorial on how Mitch built my new baking station. First of all, I mentioned this pallet of fine free wood Mitch scored at his work (he made the inside of our mudroom closet out of some of it). And yes, I'm looking longingly at that there green grass...sigh.

There was plenty of wood available (still is, actually). So with some of the thicker post-type boards in hand, Mitch set out on this fun baking station building adventure.

Doesn't the enthusiasm just jump out of that face?

His idea was to notch out these pre-cut posts using a table saw...

then build three of these rectangles using 2x4's and screws. (2 of the rectangles were made using 2x4's that he ripped in half so it didn't take away as much storage space.)

And screw the rectangles from the inside into the notched out legs.

Here it is with just one shelf on the bottom. You can tell we kinda made modifications as we went along. Originally Mitch just had lumber resting on top of the "box" he made which was the bottom shelf. He later changed that and made a ledge inside the box where boards were "sunk" into. 

This is after he made the second shelf (the one in the middle).

So for the marble that I SO craved in my kitchen, this is what we used. It was actually the top of a coffee table that I had gotten at Goodwill years ago. 

Yes, years ago...way back in 2010. (Looks like I paid $12.99 for it.) We had taken it apart and were going to use the base to make a bench, but that never panned out. We held on to the top for, obviously, such a time like this. Good thing I'm a hoarder like that.

So we placed it on top of the base, but obviously this was way too big for what I needed. I didn't need another island....just something on the smaller side, something that could be "added" to the end of my existing island.

So Mitchell had this great idea to cut the table top in half and then reattach the wood border from the other side that he took from. Does that make sense?? Look...

That piece there was the border from the other half of the table top.

He patched it together like a pro.

He used Instabond, the same stuff we used to fix the crack in our granite countertop.

And he also screwed in a screw (he sunk it and filled it in with wood filler so it's not noticeable) to make sure it all stayed together. (yuck...that wood looks disgusting)

And to make it portable, he added casters to the bottom.

Then it came to my part.

First I stained the base. (Sorry, can't find any pics of this step but we use Special Walnut from Minwax, same as our butcherblock counters.) Then I just applied a wax to the base instead of putting poly on top of the stain.

Next was the top. Something needed to be done to the wood surrounding the marble but I didn't know exactly what I was going to do. This is seriously what made this project go on forever. We lived with it as-is for a while (actually until this week when I finally finished it). First I tried sanding the wood but there was so much gunk on top of the finish that sanding it didn't cut it. I had to break out the razor blade. This picture is pretty crappy, but you can see how much stuff I got up with the razor blade.

Then to de-gunk it even further, I broke out the big guns: stripper. I did this outside in the freezing cold (in my Phillies PJs) since the fumes from the stripper were pretty intense. After applying the stripper, I waited about 20 minutes then went over it with a scraper. That took care of the rest of the gunk that was on there.

With all the extra gunk off, I sanded it and stained it. 
And hated it.

I wasn't diggin' the two-tone wood look. At all. So what's a girl to do??

Break out the paint, of course. So I painted the wood surround with black paint then distressed it ever so lightly. I'm a fan now. It now all ties together--it brings out the black that's in the island and the stained wood elements that are in the rest of our kitchen. Win/win, baby.

And that's how we built the baking cart.

How about you? Think you could tackle a project like this? It seriously wasn't very hard...just the last part of refinishing it--that's what killed me. It's the little things like painting trim or stripping a little piece of wood that always hangs over my head. But once it's, it feels good. I'm so glad this project officially done now. And we have a pretty awesome space to use for baking or I've also used it as a drinking station when I have dinner's pretty versatile since it's on wheels. 

Now I've gotta finish making a cake. No seriously, I'm not just saying that. I totally am making a cake right now. Chocolate gluten free, baby. ;)



  1. I love how Mitch repurposed the coffee table top! It looks amazing.......... I'm going to file this away :)

  2. Pretty cool little piece of furniture. It fits right in your kitchen. Good call on the black paint, it makes the top look like it has always been that way.

  3. It was really insightful.
    Thanks for such a nice content.
    BTW if anyone interested more have a look thanks


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