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How to build a Modern-Rustic Desk

March 17, 2016

A few weeks ago, we posted a VIDEO clip of our HOW TO Build Industrial-Inspired Shelves which you can find here and added our STEP-BY-STEP INSTRUCTIONS POST here. We are so happy that the video has done so well with over 1,000+ views and really appreciate the comments, support and shares of our customized shelves post and videos!

We are more than happy to share how-to’s of DIY projects in our home (my husband being a Carpenter and myself being eager to learn and be a co-carpenter in training) and to hopefully offer some inspiration to homeowners out there!

 

As mentioned in our last post, Home Depot is our go-to store for our DIY/Home Reno needs (great selection, pricing and assistance!).

 

These shelves a great feature piece in any space in the home!

To complete the look of our shelves, we customized a DESKTOP to place in line with the shelves. Today on the blog, we are sharing HOW to (step-by-step) build a customized Modern-Rustic Desk:

Materials:

OSB Board (Oriented Strand Board) – 1 piece at 4 x 8 feet – For the bottom of the desk

2, 1 x 12 x 8 ft. Pine Board – To make the planks

PL Construction Adhesive Glue by Le Page (very strong glue)

Primer (used what we had left over from other projects) in White – to seel the bottom of the Oriented Strand Board

Screws: 1 ¼ inch

Black Spray paint

Two IKEA Cabinets – “ALEX drawers” in white

Two IKEA desk legs

Stain: MINWAX, colour: IPSWICH

Varnish: Clear Gloss, oil-based

 

Tools:

Table Saw

Drill

Hand Saw

Skill Saw

Palm Sander

Sandpaper

Mask

Gloves

Measuring Tape

Screwdriver

Pencil

Straight edge (4 ft. level) OR Chalk-line

Small foam roller and tray (for varnish)

 

Instructions:

 

When we went to Home Depot and purchased the materials for our SHELVES we also purchased the materials for the DESKTOP.

 

WARNING: IF YOU ARE NOT COMFORTABLE, WE STRONGLY ADVISE YOU NOT TO USE POWER TOOLS – have Home Depot cut them (a SMALL FEE may apply)*

 

Make support for planks:

MEASURE with the measuring tape and do a pencil line. Use a STRAIGHT EDGE to draw the line and cut the ORIENTED STRAND BOARD at 22 ½ x 94 ½ inches, with the skill saw.

 

PRIME ONE SIDE of the ORIENTED STRAND BOARD. Let dry.

Preparing Desktop planks:

We chose to cut each PINE BOARD into 3 equal piece, which is approximately 4 inches in width, each. Do the same with the other pieces of PINE BOARD. In total, you have 6 pieces at 4 inches, which would equal a 24 INCH DESKTOP. Use a table saw.

CAREFULLY use a HANDSAW to make markings along each edge of clean cut boards. TIP: If you want to make the desktop look “rustic”, make markings on either edge of the planks using the HAND SAW and BE CAREFUL.*

 

Use a PALM SANDER with 120 GRIT and lightly sand both faces (DO NOT TRY TO OVERSAND and make smooth finish IN ORDER TO CONTINUE RUSTIC APPEAL). Sweep off any dust leftover on each plank.

Assembly:

Mark with pencil and measuring tape on the side that was not primed of the ORIENTED STRAND BOARD. Mark 3 ¼ inch from edge, then from that point mark 4 inches. From that point, continue 4 inches and so on until you reach the end of the board.

 

Each mark represents the seam where two PLANKS meet. Because it is rough saw PLANKS, there will be variations in each piece. TIP: SPRAY PAINT each seam in black – this way, if and when there is a gap between two planks, it will remain the spray paint colour, it’s a shadow line.

You’re first PLANK should overhang the ORIENTED STRAND BOARD by ¾ of an inch, from both sides and from the front and back edge. This allows a ¾ x ¾ x ¾ inch strip of PINE to cover the gap edge of the ORIENTED STRAND BOARD.

 

Apply GLUE to the backside of PLANK.

Conceal all SCREWS from underside.

Continue with remaining PLANKS.

Make a ¾ x ¾ of an inch strips of PINE to cover the edge of the exposed ORIENTED STRAND BOARD.

GLUE and SCREW this strip to bottom edge all the way around the DESK.

 

Staining & Varnish:

TIP: Test the STAIN on back of PLANKS because, the stain takes to rough wood very differently*

Apply coat of STAIN and go with the grain. Let dry for min. 24 hours.

VARNISH – we put three coats. *BECAUSE IT IS OIL-BASED, THIS IS VERY STRONG SMELLING. You can use WATER-BASED instead.

Assembling Desktop, Cabinets & support legs:

Assemble IKEA FILING CABINETS according to instructions. Once completed, place them in position. We aligned them with our SHELVES.

 

Place DESKTOP CAREFULLY onto rubber bumpers (provided by IKEA with cabinets) and on top of CABINETS.

We attached TWO DESK LEGS in WHITE (FROM IKEA, TO MATCH CABINETS), and screwed them to underside of DESK.

Voila – here is our CUSTOMIZED DESK! We are really happy with the rustic look and stain of the desktop and really like the balance of the white cabinets and of course our SHELVES. We can't wait to show you the overall look of the shelves and desk together!

***STAY TUNED NEXT WEEK***

We will be REVEALING how we added the FINAL DECOR touches TO our INDUSTRIAL-INSPIRED SHELVES & MODERN-RUSTIC DESK!

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