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How to Build Doors for an Existing Furniture Cabinet

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How to Build Doors for an Existing Furniture Cabinet

Last week, I posted how I revamped an Old Console TV which featured a set of doors I built specifically for the cabinet. Building doors for an existing piece of furniture is not hard, in fact, it is very simple and today I will show you how to build doors for an existing furniture cabinet!

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Start by measuring the height and the width of the opening.

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To determine the height of the doors, subtract 1/4″ from the overall height of the opening measurement. This will allow for a 1/8″ gap at the top and bottom of the door which allows it to open easily, and also allows a little “wiggle room” in case the opening is not square!

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To determine the width of the doors, decide whether the cabinet will have one door or two. If there will only be one door, subtract 1/4″ from the overall width to allow for opening and wiggle room. If the cabinet will have two doors (which is generally the case), subtract 3/8″ from the overall width. This will give the 1/8″ on each side plus 1/8″ between the doors.

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Now, cut the lumber for the doors. The vertical boards are called “stiles” and the horizontal boards are called “rails”.The measurement for the rails will be determined by the overall with of the door minus the width of the lumber. For example, if the overall width of the doors will be 12″ and you are using 1×2 lumber, subtract 3″ (a 1×2 measures 1-1/2″ wide times two for each stile), making the rail length 9″.

The frames can be constructed using the pocket hole system (shown in the drawing) or by using metal mending plates on the back side. Trust me, anyone can do this whether they are a woodworker or not! Then just sand, and paint or stain!

how to build doors for an existing furniture cabinet Frame

There are a number of ways the center panels can be constructed. I used a 1/2″ piece of plywood covered with fabric for each door but plexiglass or acrylic, punched aluminum, or just plain old lumber can be used then attached with turnbuttons, screws, or brad nails.

For the fabric door panels, I cut two pieces of  1/2″ plywood to fit the opening of the frames, then drilled pocket holes around all four edges.

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I used spray adhesive to secure dacron upholstery batting to the plywood, then wrapped fabric around the front and secured it to the back with an upholstery stapler.

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How to Build Doors for an Existing Furniture Cabinet 6I secured the top and bottom of the fabric to the sides of the panels with staples, then inserted the panel into the frame and secured it into place with pocket hole screws. (The fabric was trimmed away before inserting into the frame.)

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how to build doors for an existing furniture cabinet SANY2364So there! I hope I’ve shown that how to build doors for an existing furniture cabinet is a really easy process but if you need help or have questions, email me at cher {at} designsbystudioc {dot} com!

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  • Marg

    love it! thank you so much for this tutorial :D

    • CherTexter

      Thank YOU very much for stopping by! I really appreciate it!