Building a desk seemed a bit daunting at first, but by piecing together reclaimed pieces (and with a creative and talented husband), it was pretty simple.  Good thing too, because, well, I am officially in love with this desk.  I especially love that we made it from reclaimed pieces!

The cabinet we bought farm-fresh from Junkstock and the wood is actually pieces of the waterbed frame that came with our house.  You can buy similar base cabinets from Lowes, Home Depot, etc.  There are also tutorials online to build your own.  I encourage you to find reclaimed pieces for the top, but they can also be purchased at the lumber yard. When buying boards you have the luxury of getting them cut to fit, which would have saved us some of the hassle in step two.

I looked and looked online for a small desk with our without a hutch to put in our space, but they were either too big, too expensive, or too cheaply made. I even looked at buying a new base cabinet to use, but they were too wide and too expensive.  At Junkstock we were on the hunt for a 36 inch wide desk or a small base cabinet.  Luckily we found the perfect little cabinet from Weston Primitive Co. You can visit their Facebook page by clicking here!

So, now we have a cabinet, but we needed a topper piece to act as the workstation.  Having a cute used cabinet was not good enough for us, we wanted to find some wood we could reuse for the top.  We had some nice wide boards from an old waterbed frame we had dismantled, and figured they would make a great work surface for our desk.  So, not only is the cabinet used and farmfresh, the wood top is reclaimed. The shelf above the desk is also from the bed frame.
I have to admit, our craftsmanship is good, but our tutorial making is a bit shoddy.  But, here it goes anyway: a step-by-step for making your own kitchen desk.

1. Flip your cabinet upside down and remove the top piece.  Our was screwed on, but Tim couldn’t reach all the screws, so we ended up using a crow bar.

2. Cut your boards to the correct length for your desk.  Our desk was 35″ wide, so that is how long we cut the wood.  If you’re purchasing boards from a lumber yard you should be able to get them cut to the size you need. I would also find/purchase boards that fit the depth of your cabinet if possible.  Since our boards were 9″ wide, and our cabinet is 21″ deep, we were three inches short on the back.  So, we cut a three inch piece off our ‘backsplash’ piece and laid that piece on the top of the cabinet. (9+9+3=21) Yay math!!!

3. Sand and stain your boards.  We used Miniwax Gel Stain in Walnut, which is the same stain we used for the headboard. You can choose any stain you like.  Tim and I LOVE how the dark wood looks with the white cabinet. We almost left the planks with no stain because they had a certain beauty to them without, but I’m so glad we decided to stain them.

As you can see, Tim brushed the stain on all crazy-like, then used a rag to even it out.

4.  Attach your boards to the top of the cabinet using screws and the same holes the builder originally used to fix the top piece to the cabinet.  These pictures also show the brackets Tim used to hold the boards together, and the finished project before moving it in the house.

all those scratch marks are from Raul scratching when he wanted up on the bed.  The sides we used for the desk were actually the back of the frame.
5. Take your desk inside and see how great it looks. I’ll add some styling and organization pieces to feature in the other kitchen desk blog post.

Depending on how long your desk is, you may need a leg to hold up the end opposite the cabinet. You could also bracket it to the wall instead.  We haven’t done either yet, partly because ours isn’t very long, but also because we couldn’t decide how to do it, and the long end is butted up against our fridge.

One other step I left out was the cleaning of our farm(house) fresh cabinet.  I used just a wet rag and mild soapy water.  Tim and I grappled over the idea of painting the cabinet a nice white to match our kitchen cupboards. Also, while being quite charming, the cabinet to me looked a little too grungy to bring in the house.  Ultimately, after wiping down the cabinet we decided it was too pretty to paint.

Click the picture below to see how this cute desk transformed our kitchen into a command center.