Friday, February 5, 2016

Custom Built-In Shelf for the TV

Years ago when we were house hunting, the first things that attracted me to our little house were the great natural light in the living room and the hardwood floors. The second thing that caught my eye was the recessed alcove in the wall, presumably to hold a flat screen TV. I had never seen one quite like it before, and I still haven't. I liked that it gave the room a focal point and that I didn't have to worry about mounting a TV to the wall or finding a large piece of furniture to put it on. What I didn't like is there was no good space for our various electronics: the cable box, AppleTV, and Blu-ray player. For five long years that stuff sat out on a small Lack table from Ikea, right in the walkway. 

My three-year-old used that table as her own personal lunch room and exercise bench. For years I've been wanting to build a floating shelf inside the alcove to fill up the negative space and clear the floor. I sketched up so many plans for it, but I was intimidated by the building aspect. 

I got a circular saw for Christmas and decided it was now or never. I took myself to Home Depot and bought a 2'x4' sheet of 3/4" plywood and some 1"x2" furring strips to make the ledgers and the shelf itself. I didn't take photos of the process because I was working on it by myself, and I needed all my brain power to get it right! But I used this tutorial to give myself a basic plan, and just cut the wood to fit my space. 

A very professional tape job right here.
Here it is after I installed it, but before painting.  I had to drill some holes near the back for all of the cords to come up through. I tried to make the holes pretty, but really this part will always be hidden. I also added some chunky trim across the front (1"x 2" poplar from the hobby wood section of Home Depot) with nails. I think it makes it look more finished that just the skinny plywood alone. I caulked the nail holes across the front and sanded them smooth. I painted it with Snowbound by Sherwin Williams, and I'm so excited with the end result! 

We have so much room for activities now!

Now my kids have room to strew all their toys around and we don't have to swing out wide when walking around the corner just so we don't smash our shins on that table. Success! 

Not only does everything now have a place, but now the TV is lifted up higher and it sits more at eye level, for our viewing pleasure. 

I won't lie, I am super proud of myself for this project. My measurements turned out just right, and the TV slid in there like a glove. It gave me the confidence to build more stuff! I asked my husband, "Do you think I could build a pergola on the deck??" He just rolled his eyes at me and said, 
"Why don't you take it easy there, champ."
He's probably right, but I'm still proud of my first build! 

Does anyone else in the world have an alcove for their TV like this?? Like I said, I've never seen one before. Are we the only ones?

As a bonus, here's a photo of the other alcove we have in our house. 

I didn't know what else to do with it, so in went our owl, Otto! 

Thanks for stopping by, friends. I'm so humbled every time someone takes the time to read about another one of my projects. It warms my heart for sure! 

1 comment:

  1. Furring strips!! Who knew?!! So proud of you - I expect homemade gifts from now on!!!


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