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  • Writer's pictureRebekah


So one of the nice things about building a room from nothing is that when you're painting, you don't have to tape anything off. We wanted to add on to some existing built-ins to add more shelving, a nook to store some bar items, and cabinets for pantry storage. Prior to finishing the basement, we were using the glass front cabinets as pantry storage, but since we're going to be using this as a family room, we want to actually use those for display cases.

To finish the cabinets we ended up building some with plywood and facing them with solid wood on the fronts, building in two IKEA Ivar cabinets for the new pantry storage, and spackling the old knotted pine cabinets so that they would be smooth. We also replaced all the hardware on the cabinets to update them.

Tools that made this entire part MUCH easier:

  • Air nailer - the one I have also does staples, so I can use it when I reupholster the couch

  • Homeright Finish Max Pro paint sprayer (this thing was a lifesaver!)

If I had had to paint all of these cabinets with a brush/roller, I would probably still be procrastinating. Being able to use a sprayer ensured that I could work fast and that the coats of paint would not be too thick. Since we didn't have a ceiling up yet, we also didn't have to worry about getting overspray on the ceiling. I'll be using the sprayer to paint doors for the room as well as all the trim. They're not paying me to endorse them, but I seriously love this thing.

We got tinted primer for the cabinets, which I highly recommend. It allowed me to use much lighter coats of the final paint and still have really great coverage. We decided to go with Benjamin Moore Hale Navy on the built-ins, and it was a great choice. I love it!

For the hardware, we chose pulls and handles from the Amerock Candler line in caramel bronze. the updated hardware looks great on the upgraded cabinets. The minibar nook will also have a counter top that I made from some reclaimed mahogany that I got at our local architectural salvage place.

mahogany counter - sanding in progress

There's still some touchup work needed, but the built-ins look really amazing! They turned out exactly how I imagined in my head, which is a really cool feeling. I'll have a picture in my next post. The final wall of the room being finished meant that we could move on to the final steps of closing up the room: ceilings and floors!

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