– Ben Martens

Desk for Elijah

Elijah’s room doesn’t have a lot of storage space and with him having more homework to do in the coming years, a desk felt like a natural project. I looked around at some different ideas and designed something from scratch (though the design is anything but groundbreaking.)

We decided to paint the project so I built the whole thing out of poplar. In each project I try to tackle at least one new skill and there were a few new ones in this project:

  • I wanted solid wood for the top so that it’s easier to sand down and repair if it gets some dents or gashes in it. I’ve done a few big panel glueups in the past but I never feel like I’m good at it. It’s a challenge to get everything smooth and flat while avoiding cupping. This one turned out pretty well. I used biscuits to help with the alignment.
  • I love pocket hole joints, but they would have been very obvious for many of these joints, so I wanted to do some kind of mortise and tenon joint. I got a Beadlock system from Rockler and had a good time learning how that worked. It’s so much faster than traditional mortise and tenon and cheaper than a Domino. If I was doing this for a living, the Domino would be worth it, but for a weekend warrior like me, Beadlock was perfect.
  • I sprayed the paint on. I have a Rockler sprayer, but I’m always hesitant to use it. I went for it this time and was extremely happy with the result. I sprayed Sherwin Williams water based acrylic alkyd paint. I had good luck with that same paint on the spraying it worked well too, though I did thin it with some water. I sprayed in the garage with the HomeRight spray tent and it worked really well at keeping overspray from getting all over everything.

The final step was figuring out the drawer pulls. I looked through various options but ended up finding penguin drawer pulls on Amazon and they looked great when I installed them!

Note that the Amazon links are affiliate links so I get a small kickback if you use them at no extra cost to you.