Media/Wall unit adjacent to French doors.
April 17, 2013 in Design Dilemma
Here is the dilemma. In an ideal world, Id covert the doors to a window and shorten the width of the window so that it comes at least 18" away from the corner of the room (which also has some ductwork hidden, and therefore a funny bump out). Right now, the doors are a mere 4" away from the corner/duct work. I really want to build a media/wall unit, but if the doors stay as they are it means the unit will have to jut out in front of the doors (does that make sense?) These doors are NEVER used (we use the kitchen doors) so I dont care if they stay locked, but from an aesthetic stand point, it will funny if the unit comes beyond the window, right? Presuming everything is staying as is, does anyone have any helpful ideas. This is *the* storage of the room, so I need something. 2 kids and a dog... Ive attached a pic of the doors (you can see the duct work kind of at the right side) and the whole wall where Id like the unit to go... Thanks!
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Cabell Design Studio
Hello jdmaher,

If I understand correctly, you would like a built in along the entire wall for storage; TV and other things.

One thought you might consider with regards to the doors (and bumping out in front of them) is to step back a portion of your built in so that it accommodates the doors, regardless of whether or not you utilize them. If the unit was stepped back on both sides it would look as if you had meant to do it. For example:

If the center of the unit was 20 inches deep on the base cabinet for storage and maybe 14-16 inches deep on the top or hutch portion of the cabinet for TV and other storage, this center portion could be between 36-48 inches wide. Then, on either side of the center portion, you might place a section that is only 16 or 14 " deep on the base and either run it all the way up to match the center top portion in depth and stay at 16" deep all the way to the ceiiing, or, vary the top of that side section as well and have it become a 12" bookshelf depth. This may be very confusing to describe, but it could certainly work. Our Studio actually just installed this type of built in for a client who had a window issue. It turned out beautifully!

Best of luck with your decorating and please let us know if we can be any assistance,

Elizabeth Cabell, ASID, CID
Cabell Design Studio
April 17, 2013 at 7:39PM     
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I think I understand what you mean. Would you happen to have a picture of the unit you installed? I'd like to be able to show my millworker something and havent found anything on Houzz to resemble that look. Initially I was thinking of flanking the center portion with bench seating, but I think it will be too deep. I think I need at least 18" for benches, right? With the benches, I was thinking of having only 12" at the far ends and stepping forward to 18" for the benches, then coming out a touch further for the center portion. Does that make sense?
April 17, 2013 at 7:45PM   
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Just by way of clarification...In stepping forward, I would sort of ease into the unit, rather than it just sticking straight out and in front of the windows. I have an issue on the other side, too... There is a 5' open entryway that is right at the corner of the room...So a unit might potentially look funny in that corner as well.
April 17, 2013 at 7:48PM   
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Cabell Design Studio
Yes, the second comment makes complete sense and that is what I was trying to describe. Generally, yes, 18" is bench depth, but you could do the 12, move to 18 and move to deeper in the center unit. Third comment, yes, ease into it as described above..... no pictures yet of this unit as it was just installed two days ago but I am over there tomorrow and if I remember I'll snap a shot and upload it for you. For this particular unit we had a center section flanked by two sections on either side that were not as deep as center (lateral files, actually) and then two additional flanking sections that were only 7" deep for narrow paperback book storage. So five sections total on a 14' wall. It's pretty :)
April 17, 2013 at 8:05PM   
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We've done the same thing for a fireplace surround. She wanted bookcases on either side, but the one side bumped into a sliding glass door with only a 12 return wall. We custom built 2 12" deep bookcases, then 2 18" unites for display on top and storage below. Then the fireplace jutted out 12" with a 6" mantle. TV went above mantle. Explain to your cabinet maker your ideas on the gradual bump outs. Have them measure and do a mock up drawing. Tweak it to meet your storage needs. Pick your finish..espresso? Dark walnut? Pick your wood, many like to use maple or cherry. Pick your hardware. Select the european hinges which are hidden. Go all the way up to the ceiling if you can for a more built in cabinetry look...wrap it and the room with a crown moulding.
April 17, 2013 at 8:19PM   
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I know this wall unit isn't hard up against the corner, it's the general idea.
April 18, 2013 at 1:39AM   
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April 18, 2013 at 1:39AM   
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Thank you all so much for your thoughts. The image my millworker mocked up is all wrong. He rounded the corners (terrible) and everything is the same depth. I knew it looked funky. Back to the drawing board!
April 18, 2013 at 5:16AM     
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