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A Buffet with Lots of Storage Potential


DIY Plans to Build a Frances Buffet

Need a buffet with a simple design? The DIY plans to build a Frances Buffet feature simple lines, four doors with inserts that can be customized, and shelving behind the doors. The buffet is an easy build and should be fairly inexpensive!

DIY Plans to Build a Frances Buffet_Copy

Materials:

  • 1-1/4″ pocket hole screws
  • 2-1/2″ pocket hole screws
  • 1-1/2″ screws
  • 1-1/4″ brad nails
  • Edge banding, optional
  • 4 sets of hinges
  • Plexiglas for the doors
  • Mirror clips
  • 4 magnetic catches
  • Cabinet pulls
  • Wood glue
  • Sandpaper (100, 150, 220 grits)
  • Finishing supplies (primer & paint, or stain, sealer)

Lumber:

  • 10 – 1×2 at 8′
  • 6 – 2×2 at 8′
  • 2 – 4′ x 8′ sheets of 3/4″ plywood

Cut List:

  • 6 – 2×2 at 38-1/4″ – Legs
  • 3 – 2×2 at 14-1/2″ – Side & Center Framing
  • 4 – 1×2 at 14-1/2″ – Side & Center Framing
  • 2 – 3/4″ plywood at 14-1/2″ x 32″ – Side Panels
  • 4 – 1×2 at 35-3/4″ – Upper Front & Back Stretchers
  • 4 – 2×2 at 35-3/4″ – Lower Front & Back Stretchers
  • 2 – 3/4″ plywood at 32″ x 35-3/4″ – Back Panels
  • 2 – 1×2 at 73″ – Shelving Supports
  • 4 – 3/4″ plywood at 14-1/2″ x 35-3/4″ – Shelves
  • 1 – 3/4″ plywood at 18″ x 77″ – Top
  • 12 – 1×2 at 14-11/16″ – Door Rails
  • 8 – 1×2 at 31-3/4″ – Door Stiles
  • 2 – Plexiglas at 15-11/16″ x 29-3/4″ – Door Panels

DIY Plans to Build a Frances Buffet

Click on the drawings for a  larger view!

Step One

Edge banding will be applied to the exposed edges of the plywood prior to assembly.

Cut the pieces for the legs, the side framing, the center framing, and the side panels. With the pocket hole jig set for 1-1/2″ material, drill pocket holes in each end of the 2×2 pieces. Secure the 2×2 pieces to the legs using glue and 2-1/2″ pocket hole screws.

Set the pocket hole jig for 3/4″ material and drill pocket holes in each end of the 1×2 pieces. Secure the 1×2 pieces to the legs using glue and 1-1/4″ pocket hole screws. The pocket holes on the side framing and the upper framing piece on the center framing will face up. The pocket holes in the middle piece on the center framing will face down.

Drill pocket holes in all four edges of the panels. Insert the panels into the side frames then secure using glue and 1-1/4″ pocket hole screws. The back face of the panels will be flush with the back face of the framing.

DIY Plans to Build a Frances Buffet_Side Frames

DIY Plans to Build a Frances Buffet_Center Leg Frame

Step Two

Cut the pieces for the upper and lower stretchers. Drill pocket holes in each end of the 1×2 pieces then secure them to the legs using glue and 1-1/4″ pocket hole screws. The pocket holes will face up.

Set the pocket hole jig for 1-1/2″ material and drill pocket holes in each end of the 2×2 pieces. Secure the 2×2 stretchers to the legs using glue and 2-1/2″ pocket hole screws.

DIY Plans to Build a Frances Buffet_Stretchers

Step Three

Cut the pieces for the back panels. Set the pocket hole jig for 3/4″ material and drill pocket holes in all four edges of the panels. Insert the panels into the back frames then secure using glue and 1-1/4″ pocket hole screws. The back face of the panels will be flush with the back face of the framing.

DIY Plans to Build a Frances Buffet_Back Panel

Step Four

Cut the pieces for the shelf supports and drill pocket holes in each end. Position the supports in the cabinet as shown (under the middle piece on the center framing) and secure in place using glue and 1-1/4″ pocket hole screws. Drive a couple of 1-1/2″ screws through the support into the center legs.

DIY Plans to Build a Frances Buffet_Shelf Supports

Step Five

Cut the pieces for the shelves. Drill pocket holes in all four edges of two of the shelves (for the bottom) and in each end only of the remaining two pieces (for the upper shelves). Secure the bottom shelves to the 2×2 framing and stretchers using glue and 1-1/4″ pocket hole screws. The top face of these shelves will be flush with the top edge of the lower 2×2 stretchers.

Rest the upper shelves on the shelf supports. Secure the ends of the shelves to the side panels and the middle piece of the center framing. The top face of the shelves will be flush with the top face of the middle piece. Secure the long sides of the shelves to the supports using a few 1-1/4″ brad nails.

DIY Plans to Build a Frances Buffet_Shelves

Step Six

Cut the piece for the top. The front and sides will overhang by 1/2″. Secure in place using glue and 1-1/4″ brad nails through the top into the upper stretchers and legs.

DIY Plans to Build a Frances Buffet_Top

Step Seven

Cut the pieces for the door frames. Drill pocket holes in each end of the shorter pieces. Assemble the doors as shown using glue and 1-1/4″ pocket hole screws.

Cut the Plexiglas to size using a score and snap method. Score a line on the Plexiglas with a box cutter, move the Plexiglas to the edge of a work table then snap it along the line by gently pushing down on the part of the Plexiglas that hangs over the edge.

Secure the Plexiglas to the back of the door frame using mirror clips positioned so they do not interfere with the shelf or the support!

DIY Plans to Build a Frances Buffet_Door Frame

DIY Plans to Build a Frances Buffet_Door Panel

Step Eight

Install the hinges on the doors, then install the doors in the cabinet. There will be a 1/8″ gap around all sides of the door frames in the opening as well as in between them. Install the magnetic catches to keep the doors closed.

DIY Plans to Build a Frances Buffet_Doors

Finish as desired.

The buffet is a great piece that will look fabulous in any room. The Plexiglas panels can be substituted with glass, 1/4″ plywood, punched aluminum, or baffle fabric if the buffet will be used as a media stand… Pretty awesome, right? If there are any questions about the DIY plans to build a Frances Buffet, leave a comment below!

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Designs by Studio C is your DIY connection to How-To information, DIY projects and free furniture plans. Have questions about the plans? Contact me at cher@designsbystudioc.com!
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