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Thread: My take on a Mid-century Modern Vanity

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
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    Lafayette, Indiana
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    My take on a Mid-century Modern Vanity

    My daughter lives in a 2 bedroom circa 1940ís bungalow style house in Suffolk VA. She and her husband bought the house 5 years ago. It had been vacant, neglected, but not abused. They have been constantly updating and remodeling the house. I live 12 hours away by car so unfortunately have not been able to help much. The house had a kitchen added to the back probably in the late 1960s. This year they decided to convert the back room to a bedroom with a full bath and to move the kitchen back to its original place in the house. My daughter pretty much served as the general contractor. She has always been creative and fearless. She has worked hard to preserve some of the vintage character of the house while updating it. As she remodeled the new bedroom she installed wide trim to match the original house. She went with hardwood floors and purchased vintage 4 panel doors and hardware. She tiled the new bath similar to how the main bath is tiled. In keeping with the style of the house she purchased vintage lime green toilet and cast iron sink. She wanted a mid-century style vanity and wanted the sink under mounted. But of course she didnít have the budget for a custom Vanity so I won the bid. MCM is not my personal cup of tea but I took it on. The design was fairly simple. She wanted a solid wood counter top as well. The cabinet and drawer fronts are solid walnut. As is the counter top. Ply wood was used for the bottom. I purchased a 10í 14Ē wide 6/4 live edge slab for the counter top. I agonized over cutting away the sap wood and placing the knots so they would fall in the sink layout. My goal was to have this done at Christmas, but then unplanned demands in November put me behind schedule. With any luck the final product will be I delivered by the end of February.

  2. #2
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    Jan 2010
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    I know many of you have done much more complicated builds, but cutting out this sink hole was a major worry for me. I used a circular saw for the majority of the cuts and completed the task with a handy Japanese saw. In the end it worked out. The other tricky part was building the cabinet door to look like drawers. In these photos the alignment isnít perfect, but subsequent adjustments have gotten it better. The legs are just mock-ups. They will be replaced with tapered round legs.

    The top was sealed with Z proxy finish resign. Two coats then sanded. I used a water-based Target exterior grade matte UV top coat. This was my first time using the Z proxy. You can see my fancy ventilated finishing room comes equipped with a bathroom fixtures.

  3. #3
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    To wrap this up I will add a plywood back, apply a couple more top coats and install the legs. With any luck it will be delivered to Suffolk in a couple of weeks and serve as the final installment of the bathroom build.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2015
    Location
    Morocco IN
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    Nice job Joe - cool looking vanity. Wise choice to make the doors different sizes and frame the sink in the center of the larger door. Curious how you mounted the sink - it looks like enamel cast iron and must be heavy. That looks a lot like a Cassen's slab. And you should put a "Finishing Room" sign on that room's door.
    You know, the worst ain't so bad when it finally happens.
    Not half as bad as you figure it'll be before it's happened.
    - Bob Curtin

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    New Westminster BC
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    Looks great, how can you not like MCM? Lime green sink on the other hand???

  6. #6
    Nice job Joe! A labor of love for a daughter you love. Couldn't get much better than that.

    Doing that sink cutout would have been a big worry for me too. But you pulled it off!
    "All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing."
    - Sir Edmund Burke

  7. #7
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    Jan 2010
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    Bill, the walnut was indeed from Cassen’s. There is 1.25” x 3” blocking under the counter top sitting on 3/4 inch cleats to carry the sink. Fred, our house is a 90 year old farm house and my personal tastes run more along the lines of shaker, mission and craftsman styles. I agree with you on the sink. But my daughter really wanted a nod to the vintage fixtures. She has always had a style of her own.

    the sink was offset to provide drawer space and counter top. Also this is sitting directly under a window, and she wanted the sink centered on the window.
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    Last edited by Joe A Faulkner; 02-05-2021 at 10:54 PM.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
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    SE PA - Central Bucks County
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    That's a really attractive and nicely executed vanity. I personally like the "furniture" look that this and other "legged" designs bring to the space.
    --

    The most expensive tool is the one you buy "cheaply" and often...

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2020
    Location
    Minneapolis, MN
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    17
    That is one nicely designed cabinet. Thanks for sharing.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
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    SE Michigan
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    Looks great Joe. The main bathroom in our very old lake cottage is green sink/toilet/bathtub. Your daughter would love it. Frankly, the walnut and green goes very well together. Nice job.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
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    Lafayette, Indiana
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    Project officially done

    The vanity was delivered and installed this past weekend. It amazes me sometimes the amount of work there is between almost done and done. Not sure why the pictures uploaded sideways. The client is happy and I am glad to have this project in the done column. The vacant lot next to her house recently sold and the new owner dropped two 60í long leaf pine trees. They have been de limbed and the logs are 5-6í in length with 32-34Ē in circumference. I was thinking they would make great seat blanks for Windsor chairs. I sure hope they donít split these for fire wood.
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  12. #12
    Sideways or not, that turned out fantastic. Oh the things we do for our daughters!
    A wannabe woodworker!

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    N. Idaho
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    1,119
    Great work, both design and execution. And I agree it is amazing how the last 10% can feel like much more! Thanks for sharing
    "You can observe a lot just by watching."
    --Yogi Berra

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