The wardrobe

In this post I’ll details the process of building a wardrobe starting of with some rough lumber.


Building a wardrobe might be a bit more complex job, especially if it is your first time so my advice is to start with something smaller first, like a cabinet or shelf.

The process has many steps and stages so I’ve divided this article in the following main sections:

  1. Wardrobe plan & design
  2. Side panels
  3. Measuring, cutting and assembling the frame structure
  4. Building the legs
  5. Building the front doors
  6. Building the drawers
  7. Finishing and painting

1. Wardrobe design & plan

All great project needs a plan, so you have o start with one too. It’s essential to draw in detail what you want to build otherwise there are low chances to end up with something useful.

In my case the room where I will place the wardrobe indicated the length, height an width. This is the beauty when you are making custom furniture, you can build exactly what you need.

Here is my design, it just sketch on a piece of paper, nothing fancy,  but you do not need more.

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The idea behind this design is to build something useful and efficient. I want to have a section where I can hang my shirts, some sort of shelf and a couple drawers for the underwear.

2. Side panels

Following the design I’ve determined that I need 6 piece of 2000×450 mm panel in order to cover the top, bottom, shelf’s, doors and the sides.

I’ve created the panel following the below steps:

Step 1: Preparation – select the lumber and try to avoid cracks, knots which might fall off and other imperfections. All the lumbers must have exactly the same thickness and to achieve that you can use your thickness planer.

Step2: Making the jointprocess the lumber to have a tongue and groove joint.

tongue and groove joint

Step 3: Glue and press all pieces together. To achieve a good result I’ve created the below jig rather than buying an expensive one from the store. It takes some time to fix the work piece but it does the job.

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Step4: Sanding – once the glue dried you have to sand down all the excessive materials to get a smooth and uniform surface. You can use a drum sander or a hand sander. If you did a good job you should not notice the joint.

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3. Measuring, cutting and assembling the frame structure

After you’ve finished all panels, you are ready to cut them to the right length and to assemble the frame. This part is pretty basic so I’ll skip it, but I’d like to underline to do not forget to always check for square. Everything needs to be perfectly lined up and must be square.

2015-10-03 10.56.302015-10-03 10.35.03wardrobe frame

4. Building the legs

I’ve decided to go with round legs for this wardrobe, I’ve considered more appropriate than the rectangular ones.

I’ve started off with a piece of 10×10 cm wood, mounted to the lathe, rounded the edges and tried to do some sort of curves.

wardrobe legwardrobe leg

wardrobe legs

5. Building the front doors

To build the doors I evaluated a couple of options. The fist one was to build the door out of a single panel (basically from one piece), while the second option, a bit more complex,was to building the door from a raised panel.  The first options was too simple and I’ve already did similar stuff so I’ve decided to try the second one.

Making the raised panel is fun if you have the proper router bits. I had nothing like this in my workshop so I bought the my first kitchen cabinet set. It was quite expensive but as you will see you can do amazing project.

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The kitchen cabinet router set has two bits, the ogee bit for the side frames and raised panel bit for middle part.

As you can see in the pictures the process is relatively easy. Routing the end grain frames can be a bit tricky, that’s why I’ve build a small jig to ensure the work piece is always secured and it’s perpendicular to the router bit.

The door knobs

Another interesting part is making the knobs.  The challenge is to ensure that all are the same. To achieve this you can use the lathe duplicator or you just simply can measure the length and the radius as I did. A quick sketch is big help, it’s always easier to start of with plan, then you just have to follow the same steps and ensure the measures are precise.

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6. Building the drawers

Building the drawers is fun, I really like this part. I have a dovetail jig which makes my life easier maybe that’s why ….

There is no trick here, you just have to cut all the pieces,  route the dovetail joint, cut the grove for the bottom part on the circular saw table and you are done.  To follow the door design I’ve build the a raised panel for the front piece. After dovetail join is glued and the bottom part is assembled I’ve used some dowels to secure the front panel.

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wardrobe drawer

7. Finishing and painting

I’ve decided not to use any stain to give any color. My intention was to capture the natural color of the wood, so I applied just 2 coats of transparent paint.

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Here we are, this is the final product. There are a few low level details which are not 100% accurate but being my first furniture project I think it looks good.
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How to build the Thor’s hammer

Have you heard about Thor ? If not, the short answer is that he is a superhero and also my boy’s favorite character.


Now, that we know who is this guy, we can take a look at his hammer :). The hammer is his gun and helps him to defeat the enemies. It’s clear that in order to become “Thor” you definitely need a hammer, so this is what I’ll describe in this post.

To building the hammer you need just two pieces of wood, but in order to make the things a bit more complicated I’ve decided make a hammer with some sort of integrated light, similar to a torch. The challenge was to hide all the wires and batteries as much as possible.

Let’s get to work:

Step1: to make the handle I’ve rounded a 5×5 cm piece of wood on the lathe then I’ve drilled an 8mm hole in the middle to hide the wire.

wood hammer  2015-09-18 19.48.56

2015-09-18 20.10.28wood hammer

The tail is also detachable, this part will hold the batteries.

Step 2: to build a hammer’s frontal part I’ve picked a 12x6x6 cm wood then I’ve cut the edges with a 45 angle router bit.

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Step 3: the handle and the frontal part is ready, so it’s time to put all pieces together and to install the electricity.

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After finishing the assembling, I’ve applied two coats of wax, this will give a nice shiny look.

… and now here we are, the hammer is ready to use so you can start being a superhero ! My child loves it. The good part is that it also can be used as a torch too 🙂

wood hammerwood hammer

3D letter carving guide


This is small article to illustrate how to carve a 3D wood inscription using a hand router.  The full process is quite quick (depending on the lengths of the texts), doesn’t requires any fancy tool or template, all you need is a hand router, a piece of paper, an indigo paper and a piece of wood.

In this project I’ll create a name inscription for the dog house. The name of the dog is “Tesa” (I’m lucky, it has just 4 letters)

Let’s get to work

Step 1:  open a word document on your laptop, pick a nice font and then print out the layout. The font has to be “fat” enough to fit a straight router bit.

Step 2: draw the text to the wood using the indigo paper

3d wood carving

Step 3: pick a straight router bit and start routing. You have to follow the edge of each letter from inside out.

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Step 4:  stain the wood, especially the carved letter part. Do not bother if you touch the rest of the surface, it will be sand anyway.

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Step 5: once the stain dried, do a bit of sanding (e.g. using belt sander) until you remove completely the stained surface .

Step 6: clean surface to remove all the sanding dust and apply two coats of finishing paint.

3d wood carving

This is all the magic, six simple steps to do a 3d wood inscription with a hand router.

dog house

How to build an XXL dog house

Building a dog house seems to be an easy job at the first sight, but it isn’t. If we are talking about a medium to large size doghouse, the process can be quite complex because you have to build a frame to sustain the structure.

The request for this project came from one of my work colleague who asked me to build a doghouse for his “xxl” dog. After measuring the dog and anticipating his future dimensions, it turned out that the house has to be big:  90 cm (width) x 130 cm (length) x 115 cm (height).

The construction process is split in three parts. In the first part the focus is to build the frame, the second part is dedicated to the paneling, while the last part is about polishing and painting.

Frame structure

To build the frame I’ve followed a standard wood house plan. First I’ve created the bottom frame followed by the top one, joined them together and then finishing with the roof. The timber I’ve used was 4.5 cm x 3.5 cm thick, there is nothing special about it, this is what I had available. For joining the frame pieces I’ve used some simple wood screws, it’s quick and easy. I personally don’t like too much screws or other metal in the wood construction, so as you will see later, I’ll do my best to hide them as much as possible.

Here is the frame. The execution time is about ~1 – 1.5 hour.

wood dog house framedog house frame


Before start paneling the frame, I had to process all the lumbers and create a tongue and groove joint. To achieve this, I’ve used my router table with a tongue and groove knife.

tongue and groove jointtongue and groove joint

I was not satisfied with result, so I’ve tried to do some tricks in order to make the joint line more visible. I haven’t had any special knife dedicated to this job, so I had to improvise. After I’ve finished the tongue and groove joint I’ve switched to a V-groove router bit and processed  all the timbers again.

Once I’ve finished with the joints, I’ve cut all the pieces carefully to the same lengths ( to achieve this I’ve  mounted a stopper to the circular saw).

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Paneling the frame

To panel the frame I’ve used some wood screws, but I’ve tried to put the screws the closest possible to the end because the edges will be covered so hopefully they won’t be visible.

Painting & Staining

Before start painting, I took all apart (except the frame), this way it’s easier to paint and you can apply uniform paint on both sides.

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In order to hide the corner joints, I’ve decided to cut a piece of wood to cover the corner. This way I could hide the screws used to fix the panel wood.

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I’m pretty sure that everybody knows how to cut a  corner covers wood, but if not, here is a picture which tells everything. Basically, you have to adjust the circular saw to the desired height and apply two cuts which will remove the unneeded materials. If you use a square material, like I did, you have to calibrate the circular saw height and thickness just once, otherwise you have to do it twice.

wood corner cover

I decided to use two colors, so I stained the corner cover wood using a light oak stain.

staining the wood

After painting, I’ve finished with the roof and mounted a classic red shingless (~ 1.8 m/2 needed).

xxl dog house wood dog house

Name inscription

For the name inscription I had two choices.

  • Option1: to carve the name using a hand router
  • Option 2: to cut out each letter individually.

My choice was option1. I was already familiar with this process so I could do it relatively easy. You can find more details about the inscription process in my next post.

After putting all together  here is the final result!

dog house

The wooden safe

Hi everybody!

This post is a bit different from the others because this time I just present the final product rather than detailing the building process. The wooden safe is one of my oldest project and unfortunately I do not have  too much intermediate pictures because I’ve managed to delete all when I’ve cleaned up my iCloud account.

When I’ve stared this project, I had no ideea that I’ll end up building a safe, my goal  was to build a  wooden gear after I saw a youtube video.

The wooden gears

Building a wooden gear is quite easy if you follow the right steps. First, you have to use a software to configure the gear, then you have to print out the gear layout and glue it to the wood. Once the glue dried, just cut the gear shape on bandsaw or scroll saw.

I’ve used the following gear generator software downloaded from


The software has a very self explanatory user interface, very easy to configure and in a couple of minutes you can design your gear project.

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I was so enthusiastic that after I’ve built the two gears I felt that I have to make something useful. This was the first time when the wooden safe crossed my mind.

Well, I started to build the box for the safe and I’ve mounted the locking mechanism based on the two gears to the front door. Of course the safe is not a “real” safe, you can open it just by rotating the gears, but it looks awesome. Actually I planned to integrate some sort of combination lock but my kids liked it this way.

I think I’ve said enough so let see the wooden safe!

wooden safe  wooden safe

I not sure if it’s visible enough so I’d like to mention the fact that all parts are made out of wood except the screws which hold the hinges and the gears. I hate screws so I’ve tried to avoid them.

After I’ve finished the project I was thinking why on earth somebody would build a wooden safe, what could be an advantage of building one ? …. and I’ve found an answer: “the wooden safe will never sink if you throw it in the water :)”

wooden safe

How to build a wood key chain in 10 minutes

Hi! This post is about building a wood key chain in less than 10 minutes. The overall process takes a bit more, but if we deduct the glue drying time the rest of the work is quite fast.

Nobody asked me to make a wood key chain but when I’ve found a small piece of oak wook in my garaje I felt that I had to do something with it rahter then using as fire wood.

Here are the two pieces of oak wood I’ve started off with. As you can see the first piece has a dark color while the second one more brighter almost white.

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I’ve cut three 1 x 1cm and two 1.5 x 1 cm thick sticks on the circular saw and then glued all toegheter like in the below picture.

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Once the glue dryied I cut some 1cm thick slices but this time in a perpendicular direction and then glued all slices toegheter again to obtain a nice texture.

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After the glue dried I did some sanding and cut the desired key chain shapes on the band saw. I had plenty of materials so a did four different shapes, one circular and three regtangluar onces.

To cut the circular shape I used the band saw and then the lathe to round the edges.

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After the final sanding I applied two coats of transparnt wood finishing wax to get a shiny look.  Here is the final product, nothing sofisticated but for a ~ 10 minutes work I think it turned out well.

wood key chain

How make a bowl out of cherry wood

Hi!  Following my first bowl made out of beech wood I’ve decided to make another one but this time I’ll use a cherry wood. The cherry wood has a nice texture compared to the beech and a red color.

Last time when I’ve visited my parents I’ve found a big cherry log  hidden somewhere in the back of the yard. It was full of cracks so I wasn’t sure that I could transform it in a bowl but I wanted to give it a try. I’ve took home the cheery log and with a chain saw I cut off some of the edges to get shape similar to a bowl.

cherry logchuck screw

I used a chuck screw to fix the wood to the lathe (for those who haven’t seen a chuck screw yet, here is one).

cherry log bowlwood cherry bowlcherry wood bowl

After a bit of work on the lathe using a roughing chisel I’ve managed to get exterior shape for the bowl. Unfortunately the cracks I’ve told you about were quite deep so at that moment I realized that there is nothing I can do to hide this crack. Of course I can ‘fix’ the by fill the cracks with cherry some sawdust but they still will be visible at the end.

Once the exterior was ready I’ve moved to the interior of the bowl using a gauge chisel.

cherry wood bowl

Once both outside and inside was done I had to fix the cracks.

Fixing the bowl wood cracks

To fix the cracks I’ve used some transparent glue mixed with some cherry sawdust resulted from sanding. I let the glue to dry and than did some sanding on the lathe again.

cherry bowl with cracks

Finishing the bowl

After fixing the cracks I’ve moved on the the finishing part. I’ve applied two coats of finishing wax using a clean cotton towel.

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… and here we go, we have nice bowl made out of cherry wood.

wood cherry bowlwood cherry bowl

How to build a Lattice Fence for Gazebo

Hi All ! This post is about the process of building a lattice fence for a gazebo. I’ll show you in a few steps how I’ve built the lattice fence for my gazebo from my yard.

I assume that everybody has seen a lattice fence already, but it’s important to remark that they are different. Some of them has an overlapping wood structure, while others can be a bit more complex and have an interleaving wood  structure like the one from the below  picture.

Interleaving structure
lattice fence
Overlapping structure
 Building the jig

The goal of the project is clear now, so let’s get to work!

In order to  make the interleaving wood structure I had to build a jig first. The purpose of this jig is to ensure  that I’m able to do some perpendicular and equidistant cuts with the hand router in a repeatable manner. The distance between the cuts (grove) must be eqaul otherwise everything will fall off.

The jig is made of polywood and has a fix and a mobile part. The bottom limiter is fixed while the top limiter is mobile so you can slide up or down to secure the timber before start cutting.

router jig
lattice jig
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lattice jig with router
How to use the jig
The first step is to introduce the timber (~1.8-20 mm thick) into the jig from left to rigth, than adjust the upper limiter and tighten the screws. Once the timber is secured, use your hand router and make the first perpendicular grove. The grove depth has to be set to the half thickness of the timber. For the second grove you have to loose the screws and move the timber from left to right until first grove overlaps with the grove on the jig (see the red line). You can use a small piece of wood (must fit the grove) and put it in the jig grove, this way you can ensure that the distance between the groves will be equal.  My jig is built to have an 8 cm distance between the groves which will result in a 8x8cm square after assemblying the parts.
Repease this steps over and over again until you run through the entire timber. Once you are done you should get something like this:
When you’ve completed all the timbers you have to cut some slices on the circular saw. Very important that the thickness of each slice has to be eqal with the size of the grove, otherwise your joint won’t fitt. I recommend to have a couple of test custs before cutting the proper timber to ensure that you are cutting the right size.
Assembling the lattice fence
This part is quite easy, you have to take all the pieces, a wood hammer and join the pieces together. In order to have a 45 degree lattice you have to twist a bit structure and then cut it properly.
lattice fence
Lattice fence with interleaving structures

Once the assmebling is finished you can either use some glue or samll nails to fix structure. My jonts were already thight so I’ve used some small nails to fix the structure.


Well, I’m not proud of this part, I still have a lot to learn about painting. If I would do next time I definitely do it different.

The mistake I did is that I’ve painted the structure after it was assembled. This way the joints will get more finishing paing and will be darker.

In order to avoid this I think you have to paint all the pieces first, let them dry and to assemble all togheter at the end.

Here is the final product. Except the painting part I’m quite happy with the result.

lattice fencelattice fence

How to build a rustic outdoor chair

Yellow! This is small project (roughly 2 afternoons) describing the steps of making a rustic outdoor chair.

Stock materials:

  • for the chair seating I’ve used just a 3,5 cm thick and 150 cm long pine lumber
  • for the legs selected a 4 piece of hornbeam wood (~ 5 cm thick) left over from my rustic swing project

Although this is a small project I’d like to split in two part. First one is dedicated to chair seating construction made of pine wood, while the second part is about the legs, mounting and finishing.

Chair seating

I started off with selecting three 50 cm long, 15cm wide and 3,5  cm thick pine lumber. The chair seating will be a 35cm diameter circle, so I had to glue together three pieced in order to get the right width. To have a tight and strong joint I’ve used the router table to  make the below joint ( I not sure if there is a name for this type of joint,but if you know the name please let me know):


After a couple of hours when the glue dried, I cut the circle on the bandsaw and then used the lathe to round the edge. I’ve also did some sanding while I had this the circle mounted on the lathe, it’s quite easy at this stage and you will get a nice and smooth surface.


Chair legs

The chair will have 3 legs (~ 50 cm) and 3 additional piece which will reinforce the legs. Once the pieces are selected based on thickness, I’ve used the lathe to round down the ends.

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Note: the length of the legs have to be longer than the desired height of the chair. I’ll show you later how to cut them equal size.

Once I’ve finished with the legs I drilled some 25mm holes in the seating and assembled the legs. The angel between the leg and chair seating is 10 degree.

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Now I move to the final part when I cut the legs to have equal size.  The trick here is to manage cut the legs to be perfectly parallel with the seating. In order to achieve this I fixed my hand circular saw in the vice and adjusted to be parallel with some sort of table. This way when I rotate the chair upside down on the ‘table’ the legs will be cut off one by one to the exact size. I saw this technique when I visited a furniture factory a few months ago, so I’ve tried to adapt this idea to my needs.

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And here we go, we have a rustic outdoor chair build in a few steps.

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IPhone Sound Amplifier

Hey Guys ! This a one of my older project and unfortunelty I do not have too much pictures showing the building process, but I’ll try to compenstate this with a detailed description. In terms of duration this was a quick project it took me 2 afternoons to complete.

The idea !

The idea wasn’t mine, this project was more about building a replica of the below picture. I’ve seen this project for the first time on the kickstarter website  and I’ve found it quite challenging to try to build one.

Here is the original link.

Walnut Trobla and Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
kickstarter iphone ammplifier project

To be honest, I was a bit skeptical that this “thing” can work so I was more than motivated to try to build one.

Building the amplifier

I’ve started off with building 5 different size of circle templates (jigs) to be able to use my hand router to cut out the holes.

circle jig
circle jig

Speaking of materials I’ve managed to find some oak timber so this was the choice.

After I’ve finished to cut out all the 5 circles I’ve changed the router bit to a 45 angle bit with a follower ring and routed the edge of each circle.

This being done, I glued togheter all the 5 pieces and after a bit of sanding I’ve ended up with the below picture:

iphone wood amplifier
iphone wood amplifier
Final steps

To plug in the phone I’ve made a grove to fit an iphone 5. The back part can be detached so it’s quite easy to adapt to iphone 6 which is wider. (unfortunately I have not picture with this part)

When the central part was ready I had the idea to put some wheels to each side :). The wheels were made from remained oak timber and were rounded on the lathe.

After a couple of days I had the idea to do some further enhancements to make it even more usefull. The problem I’ve noticed was that I couldn’t keep my iphone in the amplifier ‘all the time’ (e.g. during the evening) because I had to take out to charge. To solve this issue I’ve managed to integrate the charger cable into my amplifier.

The enhancement came with two great things:

  • you could use the amplifier to charge your phone
  • if you set the morning alarm the wake up sound will be amplified and you and your neighbors will jump out of the bad 🙂 . I’m joking, it’s not that loud, but it’s quite nice.

iphone sound amplifier

Before wrapping up I’d like to post a couple of pictures related to similar topic.

Ipad support

This is a 20 minutes project so I have no picture just the final product. The short story is that my kids are ‘ipad’ maniacs’ and love to watch cartoons on the ipad. Before building this support they always improvised to find variouse objects to hold the ipad in vertical position.

I’ve used some left over pieces of wood (oack and cherry) and cut them on the circular saw. I haven’t followed any design, I’ve just built what crossed my mind. 

After the glue dried, I did a bit of sending and applied 2 coats of finising paint.

Here we are: Wood Ipad support in 20 minutes !

ipad supportipad supportiphone sound amplifier

I hope you’ve enjoyed !