Category Archives: TV Stand

Entertaining the idea…

Built-in Shelves

When Matt and I first walked through the house that we now call home, I instantly started visualizing furniture lay-outs in my head. “Where would a couch go?”, “What wall should the TV hang on?”, “Will a Christmas tree fit in here nicely?”.

While most prospective homeowners are inspecting the furnace, inquiring about the age of the roof, and checking each nook and cranny for expensive secrets, I was envisioning color schemes, furniture lay-outs, and even Christmas decorations. 

Thankfully, Matt took care of inspecting the crawl space, asking about the appliances, and drilling the poor seller on the house’s 50 year history.  

Long story short, we bought the house! Before we signed on the dotted line, Matt and I started the furniture hunt [insert scary music here]. Thanks to the mental notes I made on that fateful day, we made the decision to put the TV on the wall directly in front of the front door.

First on the furniture shopping list: An entertainment center! Sorry boys, us ladies know that the TV is only as cool as the entertainment center surrounding it. Here’s the space we were working with from day one….

My entertainment must-haves: something traditional, white, and a piece that would take up majority of the wall without being too bulky or outdated. Not too much for a girl to ask… right?

His entertainment must-haves: something that would hold a huge TV and gaming station effectively.  

 

Not that his vision was wrong; it just doesn’t fit our “look”. Using TV size as my negotiating chip, I successfully pitched my entertainment vision. With a bigger TV on the shopping list, we were both officially committed to finding a white piece with more than just an opening for a TV (thank goodness). 

After a looooong, unsuccessful hunt for the perfect entertainment center, we were left frustrated and hopeless. Well… let’s be honest, Iwas left feeling frustrated and hopeless, Matt was left thinking this lady is Cray-Cray. That’s short for “really crazy”. #keepinitreal

That’s when we started entertaining the idea of getting a custom “built-in”. This entertainment center would be complete with crown molding, open shelving, cabinetry and a crisp white finish. This was the answer we had been waiting for! Scratch the endless hours of shopping, call the carpenter, and let’s get this show on the road. Remember our my inspiration?

We sketched out a few ideas and called in a few carpenters for some estimates. After calculating the costs, we decided on a company. We went with this company, which we absolutely loved. They are extremely talented, affordable, and made our vision a reality. 

While they worked on the final product… we were living with this: (yikes)

The blue tape is the outline of the base. We put that on the floor to get an idea of the measurements.

And when the masterpiece was finally done, we were left with this…

I was head-over-heels in love. It was love at first sight, and I haven’t looked back since. She was exactly what I was looking for and more.

We’re not completely done with replacing the crown molding, but overall, I couldn’t be happier with our decision to go with the custom built-ins. It ended up being a tad pricier than a regular piece of furniture but completely, COMPLETELY worth it. 

I mean let’s be honest…if a TV is only as cool as its surrounding entertainment center, this bad boy is the coolest kid on the block.

You’re welcome Matthew, for making our your TV one cool guy.  

**UPDATE** It’s about a year in and we still love, love, love our entertainment center! Check out our tips on how we styled these bad boys…

 

 

Where did you get your entertainment center? Do you have any tips to share in trying to find the perfect piece for your space?
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6 thoughts on “Entertaining the idea…

  1. Kate

    I love it! Our new house has a smaller build-in around the fireplace that looks very similar to that. Here’s my question… I see that you guys only have the two “boxes” under the TV. We have 4! My fiance loves technology so we have a lot of ugly gadget boxes that need to be close to the TV. I just don’t want to stare at them while we’re sitting in our living room. Any ideas for a little tech-friendly camo?

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6 thoughts on “Entertaining the idea…

  1. Kate

    I love it! Our new house has a smaller build-in around the fireplace that looks very similar to that. Here’s my question… I see that you guys only have the two “boxes” under the TV. We have 4! My fiance loves technology so we have a lot of ugly gadget boxes that need to be close to the TV. I just don’t want to stare at them while we’re sitting in our living room. Any ideas for a little tech-friendly camo?

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Media Console Makeover (Part 2 of 2)

media console 2

On Tuesday, I left you with a sanded, primed, painted, and protected new media console. But today really is the best part…the accessorizing! Because we all know that accessories are usually the most fun part of any ensemble.

To make room for our new piece of furniture, Finn and I had to move out our old TV stand.

I certainly was not sad to see this piece go. #seeyawouldntwannabeya

Entertainment Center

Once our unattractive TV stand was gone…we brought up its white and shiny replacement!

Our itinerary for the night.
1. Drill holes for new hardware.
2. Drill holes in back of console to slide cords through
3. Set up electronics
4. Relax on couch watching Modern Family.

Honestly…I thought we could get this bad boy done in an hour tops…wrong-o!

Here are a few tips I’m gonna give you..that could have saved us a bit of time.

Tip #1 
Drill holes for your new hardware before you paint!

We thought we were pretty thorough when it came to measuring the new holes for our hardware. But, apparently we needed to be extremely precise when drilling the new holes (like not a centimeter off!) We certainly didn’t want to scrape any of the paint off the drawer, and that was a little difficult when trying to get the handles perfectly even.

As a result, we had a few minor scrapes. Nothing major…but it could have been avoided if we drilled our holes before painting.

Paint Scrapes

Tip #2
If you’re going to upgrade the hardware on your new piece of furniture, hold onto the old hardware just in case!

I ordered new knobs from Home Depot and I was so excited to screw them into the sliding doors. However, the screws that came were way too long for the piece.  I needed something very short and stubby.

Luckily, I held onto the old hardware and we were able to use those screws with my new shiny handles.

Drawer Cabinet Pulls

Tip #3
When making holes with the spade bits (look at me knowing drill terms…what up) I’d suggest making the holes bigger, rather than smaller.

We wanted to create holes in the back of the console to pull cords from our DVD player, router, Xbox, etc. through to the wall. Since we are both new to the world of power tools, we thought “Let’s make the holes small, and we can always make them bigger if we need to.” #youcantellwearerookies #yeesh

Spade Bits

Turns out it is waaaay harder to make a hole bigger, after you’ve created it. So either make them big, or know the exact size you’ll need to fit all of your cords.

It took a while, but we finally had new hardware and a few holes drilled for our cords.

It was then organizing time!

Media Console
Once the inside was to our liking, we put the sliding doors back on and admired our handiwork.
Media Console After
Wow…definitely an improvement from our former setup.
Media Console Hide Electronics
When watching TV all we have to do is slide open the right door and our remote control will work with our cable box.  Pretty cool right? All of our ugly electronics are tucked neatly away.
Media Console After
New Drawer Pulls

The handles may not have been easy to get on…but they sure are pretty.

Media Console After
Media Console Makeover

Overall, I would say it was a pretty successful transformation.

After all of that hard work, I’m ready to sit back, relax, and enjoy our new TV setup.

TV Stand After
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4 thoughts on “Media Console Makeover (Part 2 of 2)

  1. kristyshealthrevolution

    Do you plan to leave the bookcases brown, or are you going to paint those as well? I’m looking at it and I’m thinking that if it were me (and it’s not, so if you love it, go with it), I might paint the inside of those bookcases white or a contrasting color? I don’t know, just a thought. I looooove the media console though. Is it annoying to have to open/close the sliding door to watch tv? I feel like I would get lazy and leave it open.

    Reply
    1. DIY Playbook

      Kristy…definitely been thinking about painting the bookcases a lighter color on the inside. Then I could style them and really make our books and accessories POP! Still in the planning process for that one though…

      Honestly not too annoying to slide open the door to watch TV. Usually just open it up, grab the remote, and relax. Then when we clean up the family room area, we slide the door back into place. It’s way better than seeing those ugly cords!

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4 thoughts on “Media Console Makeover (Part 2 of 2)

  1. kristyshealthrevolution

    Do you plan to leave the bookcases brown, or are you going to paint those as well? I’m looking at it and I’m thinking that if it were me (and it’s not, so if you love it, go with it), I might paint the inside of those bookcases white or a contrasting color? I don’t know, just a thought. I looooove the media console though. Is it annoying to have to open/close the sliding door to watch tv? I feel like I would get lazy and leave it open.

    Reply
    1. DIY Playbook

      Kristy…definitely been thinking about painting the bookcases a lighter color on the inside. Then I could style them and really make our books and accessories POP! Still in the planning process for that one though…

      Honestly not too annoying to slide open the door to watch TV. Usually just open it up, grab the remote, and relax. Then when we clean up the family room area, we slide the door back into place. It’s way better than seeing those ugly cords!

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Media Console Makeover (Part 1 of 2)

media console 1

I’ve had the DIY “bug” for quite some time now. And if you’ve ever had it before, then you know that the minute you finish one big project, you get the itch to start another.  So, I’ve been searching for a new furniture project for the past few months and I have finally found it!

For the past 3 years, we’ve had a ho-hum entertainment center. It holds our DVD player, TV box, etc, and all of the crazy cords that go along with those. It’s functional, but it sure ain’t pretty.

Entertianment Center Media

I’ve been on the lookout to trade out the TV stand for a functional and stylish media console. So, the other day, while shopping at my favorite antique mall, I literally stopped in my tracks when I saw this…

Media Console Before Entertainment Center

Before I got too excited, I gave it a good look just to make sure there weren’t any big flaws. I slid open the cabinet doors, opened the drawers, and luckily everything got my seal of approval.

Then it was onto the price tag. At $80 it was a little high for my typical antique mall budget. But, the quality of the mid-century piece was phenomenal, and I adored the sleek, clean lines and the retro feel. How could I let this deal slip through my fingertips?

I forked over the money, and excitedly brought my new purchase home and into our building’s basement storage area.

My first step was to wash away all of the dirt, grime, and spider webs. I brought down some rags and a bucket full of warm water mixed with vinegar. This concoction helped get the musty smell out of the drawers, and wiped away all of the years of dirt from the piece.

I took a flathead screwdriver to take off all of the hardware, and then took out the drawers. While doing that I came across this little treasure.

Map of Missouri 1981

It’s an old map of Missouri from the 80’s. Pretty cool, right? It must have been from the previous owners, and that is what I absolutely love about buying old pieces. Everything you buy has a backstory, and I like to think that each piece is enjoyed for years by an owner and then it’s time for a new home and change of scenery.

Anyways..back to making over this little slice of heaven.

So, I decided that I was going to paint the console a nice crisp white. I know, I know…some of you are cringing at the thought of painting that beautiful wood. If you’re one of those people, I would stop reading now.

Okay, hopefully everyone didn’t leave me. Let’s continue.

My first order of business was to sand down the wood a bit, just to smooth the surface before priming the piece.  My tip is to run your hand over the wood, and make sure it is smooth to the touch.

Palm Sander Sanding Wood

I used my palm sander (which I love…it’s a total time saver!) and 220 grit sandpaper.

As you can see, the top of the piece isn’t wood. I think it’s a laminate? Anyways, I sanded that down so it wasn’t so slick, so the primer would have something to grab onto.

After sanding, I wiped down the piece with a clean cloth to get rid of any dust.

Then it was onto priming. I used my favorite primer (Zinsser Bullseye 1-2-3) It is water-based and I’ve used it for many projects. It never disappoints.

Zinsser Bullseye 1-2-3 Primer

For the most part I used a foam roller, but to get the nooks and crannies I also had to use a quality, angled paint brush.

I tried my best to keep this coat of primer very light, which can be tricky especially with the brush.

Primed Media Console

I’m not gonna lie, I was a bit nervous after seeing that first coat of primer go on. It was especially hard for me to deal with the sliding doors and make sure they got covered with primer…but not too much primer.

So, after waiting a day for the primer to dry, I decided the sliding doors needed to come off before the painting process.

Finn ventured down to the basement to help me out. Between the 2 of us, we were able to figure out how to get the doors out without causing any damage. #success

Primed Cabinet Doors

Before I got started painting, I used a sanding block to sand down any uneven surfaces where the primer was a little thick.

Then I gathered my supplies to kick this DIY project into high gear.

Painting Supplies Brush Paint Tape

Supplies:
-Gloves
-Painter’s Tape
-Cloth
-Sanding Block
-High quality, angled brush
-Painting tray
-High quality roller
-Enamel based paint (I used Behr semi-gloss enamel, in Ultra Pure White)
-Protective Finish (I used Minwax water-based polycrylic protective finish in Clear Gloss)

When it comes to picking the right paint, I definitely recommend an enamel based one. Enamel ensures a hard finish that will be durable and won’t nick or chip.

Behr Ultra Pure White Interior Semi Gloss Enamel Paint

Okay, onto the painting.

Again, I can’t stress how important it is to apply thin, even coats, just enough to cover the piece. Allow each coat to dry at least 24 hours.

Paint Furniture

I used a brush, as well as a foam roller, to give this piece an even, white finish.

It took 3 light coats of the paint, but I was finally pleased with the color.

Now here is the hard part. The waiting game. I waited 3 days to allow the paint to fully cure. (It can sometimes take up to a week!) I know you want to start using your transformed piece right away, but please wait! You don’t want to ruin all of your hard work.

After waiting, it was time to protect the painted piece of furniture.

I was a little nervous for this part of the project. I’ve read that some finishes and waxes can yellow white furniture. I was determined to not let that happen to this bad boy! So after doing some internet research, I decided on this protective finish.

Minwax Polycrylic Protective Finish Clear Gloss

I’ve never used a protective finish like this on painted furniture, so I was a little hesitant when putting it on the piece.

I just followed the directions on the back of the can (light coats, sanding down when dry).

Luckily, no yellowing occurred and I now have a very white protected piece! Woo hoo!

Painted Furniture

Sadly, dear reader, it isn’t quite time for the dramatic before and after of this project.  With all of the sanding, priming, painting, and protecting this project ended up taking over a week. So, I think this project definitely warrants at least 2 posts!

On Friday, I’ll show you the new hardware I bought for the drawers and handles (shiny and pretty!) I’ll also give you a rundown of hiding our electronics inside the sliding doors, for a tidy entertainment center. Get pumped people.

So does anyone have any insight for me regarding the protective finish? Have any of your white pieces turned yellow? Why does that happen with some protectors?
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