Farmhouse DIY Wall Cabinet with Free Building Plan

Confession: I was a big power tool phobia who never even used a drill, until about 6 months ago!

I have always wished to design and make furniture pieces that are uniquely meaningful and beautiful for our home. Finally my wish became irresistible, so I took a deep breath, jumped into a 16 week woodworking class at our local college which happened to have one of the best programs in the country, and made this cabinet which I designed from scratch.

apieceofrainbow21b (12)

I understand most of us don’t have all those fancy shop tools. I just want to share with you what the class was like, and the detailed plan here for those of you who would like to make it. It can totally be done with a few tools most people have, such as a table saw and a jig saw.

apieceofrainbow21b (3)

This is what I started with! A little background story – the college has an amazing Urban Forestry Program where they save those felled tree from going to landfill, and use them in our woodworking classes!

*Some resources in article are affiliate links. Full disclosure here.

apieceofrainbow21b (7)

So our cabinet is made of our local Torrey Pine: “the rarest pine species in the United States, an endangered species growing only in San Diego County and on one of the Channel Islands”-Wikipedia.

apieceofrainbow21b (8)

It has special meaning to us because Jeff and I love hiking at the Torrey Pine State Reserve! And the purple one is poplar, which I used on the sides.

apieceofrainbow21b (9)

The design is inspired by early American jelly cupboards and shaker cabinets. We wanted an open cabinet with shelves so we can see and appreciate those pretty bowls and potteries we love.

apieceofrainbow21b (11)

We also love the charming country style of those primitive furniture pieces.

apieceofrainbow21b (10)

First step is planning out all the piece, roughly cutting them into shorter length, and getting the wood all nicely smoothed and squared.

apieceofrainbow21b (4)

I learned to use a lot of machines in this step, which I will skip because most of us can get finished wood at Homedepot, etc! Each piece is cut, joinery added with a router, and dry-fitted to make sure they all fit.

apieceofrainbow21b (5)

It’s a good practice to use the plan as a guide but use actual measurements as you start building to make sure all pieces fit tightly.

apieceofrainbow21b (6)

The face frame is made slightly larger than needed. Put it on top of the dry fit cabinet, trace with a sharp pencil the sides, and sand the face frame on a belt sander to match the pencil line.

apieceofrainbow21b (14)

The grid pieces for the door glass was cut on the router table, but you can also get ready made trim / molding pieces for that! Mark the hinges on the flush inset door and face frame, and cut out the thickness of the plates with a chisel. Attach hinges to door and face frame with screws.

I decided to paint the hinges and door knob blue for a bit of color. Attach the door knob, drill a hole on the shelf where the screw of the knob is and glue a magnet inside to hold the door closed.

apieceofrainbow21b (1)

The back panel is the only place where small screws are used to allow wood movement – 1/8″ every 8″ across the face grain.

The entire piece was sanded with the slurry method : sand with 220 -400 grit sand paper and create a oil + fine saw
dust slurry mixture, which fill in the pores of the wood and create a marble like finish after doing it daily for 7 days. Honestly I did 3 coats and was happy with it already!

Make wall hanging cabinet from scratch- a piece of rainbow

I learned a lot from this class. I met some great people, and went from a phobia to a lover of power tools! I also gained a much deeper appreciation for the fine craft of woodworking. There is so much to learn!

apieceofrainbow21b (13)

If you are thinking about taking a woodworking class, go for it! You will feel a door just opened to many new creative possibilities, and, no worries – you won’t be the only girl in the class! =)



  1. What a gorgeous DIY cabinet with great instructions! I love how you made it from scratch, such beautiful design too.

  2. ananda this is truly amazing, go you for going to class and learning this. I have power tool phobia it’s pretty bad I mean I’m scared of hammering nails into walls, so probably way more extreme than yours was but I keep thinking I should get over it 🙂

  3. wow!! i am so impressed! I can’t even imagine making that. I have issues putting my ikea furniture together. But that seems like a fun project to try one day!

  4. I LOVE this! I am bookmarking this because I am moving soon and would love to make this (well have my boyfriend make this) for our new place 🙂

  5. Wow! I am in awe! I have always wished I could do woodworking. Furniture is expensive and if you made it yourself you could customize it. This cabinet looks so great. I am so impressed.

  6. Wow, that is truly impressive! I am happy that you saw something you wanted and figured out a way to make it happen. I have been meaning to get some more DIY under my belt as well, but have just been putting it off because I am intimidated with the unknown. This post definitely shows that if we truly put our mind to doing something , it really can happen. Awesome job.

    Thrifting Diva

  7. This is fabulous! I’m so impressed that you made this from scratch. it’s so beautiful! I may have missed it, but where will this be featuring in your house?!

    Katie <3

  8. I did a wood working class in High School, and I thought I would’ve enjyoed it but I actually ended up really hating it lol. 🙁 I wonder now that I’m older, and High School is a faint memory, if my mind has changed at all. Your cabinet turned out great. When I visited your site and glanced at the image you took before reading the title or the blog post, I honestly thought it was store-bought. So there’s that, right? Nice job on it! Go make a few more and sell them for big bucks on Etsy! 🙂 🙂

  9. I love re-doing older pieces of furniture but have yet to make a piece of woodwork on my own and this looks like fun! You made it look easy though! 🙂

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Send this to a friend