It’s been awhile since I posted but thankfully it’s all due to being extremely busy. I always get so excited when I get to post about a DIY. Cause if you know me, you know I love to “do” & “make” and when I have a vision of something super cool & creative… I can’t wait to dive in and do it. And then share all about it. This post is on how I got my very own island and you can too!
Let me say that my family thought I was insane when I bought an old dresser and they heard it was my future kitchen island, (they couldn’t see my vision). This project took a long time mainly due to weather being uncooperative and other projects that took precedence over it. But I’m happy to say it’s done and it’s just what I envisioned. My family now sees what I was talking about. I hope you do too.
When I knew this was the house we would be buying, I immediately knew I wanted to make an island for the kitchen. As with most of my visions, I draw them out and figure out dimensions, supplies & cost. I had measured the space in the kitchen, then the previous owner sold me an old dresser for $25 (a steal). (You might remember it’s twin style night stand that I repainted and posted about HERE.) I also bought that from her.
Drawing out my design
The supplies I would need but mainly the dimension of what I wanted the final piece to be. I did that by figuring out the space, then taking into account the overhang I wanted (for seating & other considerations). I wanted an overhang to be able to have two bar stools for my boys to hang out with their Mimzy. And an overhang on one end so that it could house the trash can underneath. Once the design and materials list was finalized, I began by giving it a good cleaning then removed the old hardware.
Once the design and materials list was finalized, I began by giving it a good cleaning and removing the old hardware. On to taking apart the entire accent trim on the bottom of the dresser. I needed a flat surface to install ball feet.
I also removed the one little cabinet door, (not to worry, I will use that for another project). Reuse, reduce, recycle!
The ball feet had to be big, prominent, the right height, but also have character.
She has feet!!! It’s time to paint. In comes chalk paint. I usually blend colors to what I’m wanting so I can only say mine started with a green undertone then I did a full sweep of creamy white. Once the paint dried, I sanded down the areas where I wanted the original dark stain and green undertones to be exposed (mainly corners, sides, and edges).
How precious are these two? The boy-child aka little-man, wanted to help grandpa with this task. Putting old barn wood planks on the back side of the dresser. (This step came after all the painting and wax seal was applied.)
I found these beautiful little corbels at a local antique store ($8/each), used for support and detail on the main overhang. I scrubbed them gently, wiped and sanded a bit and removed any old nails sticking out. Hubs applied some clear coat to seal the chippy paint from falling off over time.
Now the nice thing about building your own custom pieces is that if you’re short like I am, you can make them to your specifications. Meaning I will actually be able to stir, mix, and see what I’m doing at a comfortable height! So when it came time to figure the countertop and I’ll be honest, this was the most trying part of this whole project.
Getting the right height
I had to figure out the correct height of the ball feet and then what I would need in order to come up with the correct height. So we went with 3/4″ plywood (for inches and support), and the 1×12’s. Boo did a fantastic job of cutting and rounding the corners for me. Figuring out how to attach the heavy top to the dresser was also a challenge.
LOTS & LOTS of sanding and smoothing after the rains decipated. I love the grain and knots on these, right? (Thanks to my son-in-law for picking them out for me!). Once the sanding was complete and before the staining, Boo helped me put some character on the top side by putting dents, runs, and dings in the wood using a meat tenderizer and a hammer.
Back view and ready to stain. I applied a dark mahogany staining gel. Two coats.
Two coats of polyurethane later and this baby is looking amazing! (You can see some of the runs and dings here!). Now spills and crumbs can just be wiped right off of the protective sealant.
Here you can see the overhang I did for the waste basket to be tucked right underneath. Making it convenient for baking and cooking time! You can also see the new hardware that I replaced the old with and the detailing of the darker shades exposed under the lighter paint.
You can also see the cubby area I left by removing the little cabinet door.
This is by far, one of the most fun projects I’ve done and it turned out better than what I imagined. Now my two little monkeys can sit or help me make “nana muffins” whenever they want.
How I got my very own ISLAND and you can too
My reasoning for going with a dresser for an island… they’re roomy, have lots of storage and big drawers. Drawers that would allow for baking sheets and pan storage and lots of utensils at arms reach while baking. The final size was 7′ 4″ long x 3′ wide and 34 1/2″ tall.
It will make my kitchen days at home and the Peppermill, a whole lot more enjoyable and functional. I’m all for that!
Now that the island and cabinets are complete, we have light fixtures to replace and we have something exciting for that. Hopefully down the road when we have the funds, we can replace the flooring as well.
As far as this project…the total cost for my massive island… $110! Not too shabby huh? I certainly can’t find a custom island for that price or one I would love as much. Tell me what you think of my little island and remember if you can dream it – you can make it!
Thank you’s to my guys…Boo, the grandson & my son-in-law for their help with this fun project!