What a fun project! Everything in this piece is finely tuned and carefully planned to assure the longevity of this charming princess desk. The top is robust and sturdy, with every intention to support the weight of child who has just climbed to the top of the keep to gaze into the vast horizon (aka the living room). The drawer pulls? Those are just holes, so there will be no snagging of clothes or loosening over time. The legs are carefully mortised through the top so they will never fall off, or wiggle or jiggle, and what's that trap door over there? Oh, it's a neat little chest to store all kinds of studious and artsy tools!
I say, this desk is fit for a princess!
This project was very involving, and to my delight, very rewarding. I was able to single-handedly complete each step from start to finish, not without a few hiccups, but the end result is gorgeous and is identical to the concept drawings.
To begin, I opened up the drywall behind the feature and re-routed the outlet to behind the TV. Next, I built an upper and lower frame out of steel studs, braced with 3/4" plywood straps. The lower framing supports the electric fireplace insert, while the upper frame provides a structure for the veneered panels. Steel studs, though less rigid than lumber are considerably more stable and resistant to warping with moisture and heat, and also much lighter.
The exterior cladding and cabinetry was manufactured at my shop and installed onsite. The quartz top, on the other hand, was cut and polished in the clients back yard! That was a lot of polishing...
The foreseen challenges that this job entailed had to do with spacial limitations. The feature spans from floor to ceiling, so each element had a tight margin for size which had to be accounted for and thoroughly planned out.
You know what they say, haste makes waste. So put on your thinking cap and hunker down. We're striving for perfection here!
Buro 47 Architecture Conference Tabletop
Ooooo, is that steel?
Yes! The steel itself is a work of art, fabricated and finished by Artemisia Metal Fabrication in Vancouver, with a lustrous patina that draws you in. The metal is the true star, but every star needs a stage! I guess I'm somewhat of a stage builder... the perimeter of the table top, made out of laminated birch-core plywood with a maple veneer was a joy to work on. Except for routing out a giant mortise for the metal. That was stressful.
All in all, it came together! The corners are joined with interlocking plywood plates, glued and screwed up through the bottom, for a joint that will never ever come apart. The entire piece is a pleasure to touch, with 3 coats of satin lacquer on the steel and 4 coats of polyurethane on the wood, buffed with wax. This thing is tough as a rock.
Super clean, super stylish and, well, super duper!