Thursday, January 2, 2014

Cabin Chronicles Part 12 - Reclaimed Barnwood Kitchen Cabinets

This project was my favorite part of the construction of the cabin.
Building the kitchen cabinets from salvaged barnwood!
A quick story on the barnwood.
The wood was milled right up the road from us by a neighbors dad.
It was used to build one of his barns in the mid 1900s.
 His dad passed away a couple of years ago, well into his 90s.
The barn was starting to collapse and our sweet neighbor asked us if we wanted the wood.
Are you kidding me? Of course we wanted it!
There was only one catch, we had to take the barn apart piece by piece and denail the wood.
What a wonderful blessing for us and it keeps his dads barn living on.
My husband let me design, cut and build this part pretty much on my own.
He just helped me install everything.
We started with our basic layout of the kitchen.

We made a few changes along the way.
Originally the stove was going to sit under the window
and the fridge was going to go to the right of it, where the temporary counter ended.
We decided that just wasn't enough counter space to be practical, so the fridge was moved under the stairs (ladder) and the stove was moved to the right of the window.
We also decided to add a small cabinet and counter between the fridge and stove.

Sorry I do not have pics of this whole process.
The entire cabinet structures were built with regular 2x4 lumber and plywood.
We covered the parts of the plywood that would be exposed with barnwood.
 I designed and cut all of the pieces to make the doors and  
my husband put them together and attached them to the cabinets.
We used hammered black metal hinges and door handles.
We also made small swivel pieces out of barnwood to keep the doors closed.

I'll move right along, so that I can show you a finished picture.
We built the countertops out of 1x10 pieces of pine that were glued together edge to edge.
We also added a piece of 1x2 pine along the front edge of the counters.
There is a 1x6 pine board functioning as a small backsplash on top of the counter.
All of this pine was stained and coated with numerous layers of protection.
(we've lived in the cabin for 3 years now and the counters are holding up great)
We decided to add a beadboard backsplash and paint it red.
The backsplash goes about 3/4 of the way up the wall,
 which allowed for some of the logs to still be exposed in the kitchen.
Above the beadboard is a pine shelf that is 12" deep
and it is supported by hammered black metal shelf brackets.
The outlet covers are black metal and the faucet is brushed nickel.
We went with white appliances.
There is a double sink, a small stove with an oven
and a 15 cubic foot fridge in this tiny cabin kitchen.
We built a closet around the fridge out of barnwood.
It closes it in on all sides except the front.
There is a large shelf area above the fridge, under the stairs.
We have since added a microwave on top of the fridge.
It's small, it has challenges sometimes, but it works for us!
I've done some creative food storage and organization,
but we'll get to that after the full construction of the cabin is chronicled.
Make sure you keep checking back to see how we make it work.
I'll give you a little hint - mason jars.
Thanks for stopping by to check out my beloved barnwood cabinets.
If you want to follow along from the ground up, go here.
'til next time,
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  1. Wow, taking down a barn is a lot of work, but your cabinets turned out perfect for your cabin. I like the rustic red you chose for your backboard too!

    1. Thank you so much. I'm definitely a red lover, however, I have considerred painting the backboard an offwhite to brighten the space up. I'm kindof scared too though.

  2. What sort of finish did you put on the cabinet doors? I'm looking to do something similar in my mudroom with our old wood from our farm.

    1. I will double check with my husband, it has been a couple of years and my memory - well we won't talk about my memory. It was a clear polyeurethane from Lowes, if I remember right. It protects and seals them from water damage and keeps other spills from penetrating the surface so they can be wiped off. Being that this is a log cabin, everything has sealer on it. (That was a job) We used matte or satin finish because I didn't want the wood to be shiny.

    2. He said we used a clear wood sealer, not poly.

  3. Oh, and did you sand it down or plane the wood too?

    1. Hi Mama Shar
      We did not sand or plane the wood. We just took out the old nails and clean it off with a dry brissly brush to remove any loose wood or dirt. A dry paint brush works to dust it too. I haven't had any trouble with them. If something is spilled/dripped or splattered on them I can wipe them off with a damp cloth, preferrably one that doesn't have a lot of lint, but mostly I just dust off the tops edges of the Z part and they stay clean.

  4. Boy, this has kept me entertained for a few hours today! I loved your story and your cabin is terrific! The reason it was so fascinating is that in 1977 in the fall, my late husband and I started a project like this on a lake in Wisconsin. We had a 24' by 26' shell constructed by a builder but we finished everything else by ourselves. It took us until spring of 1991to finish it enough to move in; working mostly on weekends as we lived in .Minnesota then. We added on a beautiful bedroom in 1995 but sadly, my husband passed away in 1997from cancer and my golden years were cut short. Have a wonderful life in your cabin, enjoy it and each other!!

    1. Hi Barbara,
      Thank you for sharing so much of your story with me. I get frustrated sometimes not being near the ocean that I spent 33 years living very close too. You've reminded me to wish my days away because I don't have everything I want and that I should embrace and enjoy every moment now. The cabin is my husbands dream and it has been an accomplishment for both of us. We are currently building a guest apartment in our barn. I will be posting about that soon. We are tackling the flooring this week and hopefully planking the bathroom walls this weekend. I am sure your cabin home is lovely. Do you still reside there? What great memories you must have, building your home together. I don't think just any couple could tackle projects like this together. I think it takes a special kind of understanding, respect and love for each other.

    2. sorry - you've reminded me to NOT wish my days away.

  5. AWESOME!! I just went from day one of your cabin build. what a huge amount of work and how great it turned out. That is our dream, we have 3 acres of land but not sure we can build it ourselves, but wow gives me incentive to think about my small garden shed I want after the cabin! LOL

    1. Thanks for taking time to read about our cabin construction Cindy! It took just under 3 years for us to complete it working most nights and weekends. It was definitely a lot of work, but now that we've been living in it for 3 1/2 years the work part has faded into memories. We're coming into my favorite time of year to live in a cabin. Fall & Winter. The fireplace and the entire setting is super cozy when it's cold out. Go for your dreams!

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