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Ash Tea Cabinet

author-gravatar Mr.Williams May 30, 2019

I have a wall in my kitchen that I thought would look better if hung a tea cabinet from it.  Wanting to incorporate some kumiko panels into the build, I made a cabinet out of ash for the space.  It's mostly inspired from Matt Kenney and Mike Pekovich's work.

Photo of Ash Tea Cabinet

This is my old desk.  I made it in 2013 out of ash floor boards that I got for free on Craigslist.  I just upgraded this desk to a much better one (see my other project on SimpleCove), and not wanting the wood from this one to go to waste, I decided to turn it into two things - 1. Kumiko jigs and 2. a tea cabinet.

Photo of Ash Tea Cabinet

The tea cabinet design is inspired by Matt Kenney and Mike Pekovich's designs.  The first thing I did was go to Sketchup and realize how terrible I am at it.  The good thing is that it's pretty easy to learn, and I was able to get rough dimensions from the design I made.

Photo of Ash Tea Cabinet

I cut the desk top into smaller pieces and planed off the old finish.  From there, I found the best grain for the case and door panel of the cabinet.

Photo of Ash Tea Cabinet

After milling to case pieces, I marked out the pins and tails.  I still have a lot to learn when it comes to dovetails, but I was able to cut pretty good joints using a few jigs, my bandsaw, and my tablesaw.

Photo of Ash Tea Cabinet

Here is the bandsaw jig.  I have another one for cutting pins on the table saw to match this angle perfectly, but I don't have a picture of it.

Photo of Ash Tea Cabinet

Transferred the lines to the pin board and cut these out on the tablesaw.  I cleaned everything up with a chisel.

Photo of Ash Tea Cabinet

I wanted through tenons for the cabinet shelf and wasn't confident enough in my hand tool abilities, so I opted to use the router and a quick jig to hold the board in place.

Photo of Ash Tea Cabinet

Routed out the mortises and squared the corners off with a chisel.  I don't have any other progress pictures of these joints.  However, I opted to do floating tenons, which worked great in the end.

Photo of Ash Tea Cabinet

The next step was to get some basswood for the kumiko.  My shop helper decided to come with because she knows that Woodcraft has a rocking horse.

Photo of Ash Tea Cabinet

I didn't take many pics of the basswood milling process.  I first resawed the 4/4 board into thirds.  Then I took the wood to the drum sander to get it all to 1/4" thickness.  I then cut it into 1/8" strips for the kumiko.

Photo of Ash Tea Cabinet

I've only made 2 kumiko panels before this project, and used a chisel for each.  This time I decided to use a small kanna to cut the angles.  It worked great.  Not sure if one method is better than the other.  The kumiko jig is made from the legs of the old desk.

Photo of Ash Tea Cabinet

I ended up lining the cabinet and backing the kumiko panels with fabric.  Here's the fabric I chose for the build.

Photo of Ash Tea Cabinet

Prototyping a few designs.  I went with the bottom one for the outside of the door and used an asanoha pattern for the inside of the door.

Photo of Ash Tea Cabinet

Didn't take many pictures of the door build.  All rails and stiles are rift sawn ash.  The panel is 1/4" thick and made from the desk that I recycled. And all joints are held together with floating tenons.  Here's a picture of me test fitting the kumiko panel.

Photo of Ash Tea Cabinet

I wanted simple drawer and door pulls for this project and came up with a nice profile on the lathe.  It took a few tries to get the pulls to be exactly the same, but it worked out in the end.

Photo of Ash Tea Cabinet

Prototype drawer pull.  I figure the brass was too much and took away from the other cabinet details.

Photo of Ash Tea Cabinet

Drawer pull. Grain aligned.

Photo of Ash Tea Cabinet

Door pull. Grain aligned.

Photo of Ash Tea Cabinet

Test fitting everything.  I didn't take any pictures of the drawer build.

Photo of Ash Tea Cabinet

Interior shot.

Photo of Ash Tea Cabinet

Another interior pic. The cabinet is lined with basswood.

Photo of Ash Tea Cabinet

Drawer half-blind dovetails. These are much easier than through dovetails when cutting by hand.

Photo of Ash Tea Cabinet

Drawer is also lined with the fabric.

Photo of Ash Tea Cabinet

Thanks for looking!

3 comments

I absolutely love this cabinet! Great job

Thanks, Sean!  It was a fun build knowing that I was able to re-use the wood from my old (poorly built) desk in both the kumiko jigs as well as the cabinet itself.

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