Build It | Home Message Center
Ask This Old House general contractor Tom Silva and host Kevin O’Connor use stock lumber and millwork from a home center to build a home message center that mimics a window.
- Cut 1x3 poplar to desired length and build a three-sided frame. Use a butt joint, predrilling the hole first, and then fastening with a 3” screw.
- Cut Colonial Casing to length, mitering the top corners of each piece at 45 degrees.
- Glue and nail the casing to the frame, leaving a ¼” reveal around the inside.
- Glue and nail the miters together on the casing.
- Cut 1x4 poplar to desired length and build another three-sided frame with butt joints and 3” screws. This frame will be taller than the inner frame as it will be the mounting point for the crown molding.
- Glue and nail the outside of the casing to the outer frame.
- Glue and nail a piece of 1x4 as a flat stock above the top piece of casing. Use a filler block to ensure it doesn’t warp.
- Mark and cut the miters for the crown molding.
- Glue and nail the crown molding to the message center assembly.
- Cut a piece of 1x6 poplar to length to serve as a stool.
- Use a router with a roundover bit to round over the edges of the stool piece.
- Predrill and then screw through the bottom of the stool to attach it to the rest of the message center.
- Build an apron using 1x4 poplar and toe screw it into the bottom of the stool.
- Using a track saw or circular saw with a straight edge, cut the chalkboard plywood to size and nail to the back of the inner frame.
- Cut a piece of ½” MDF to size to serve as a back cover and secure it with screws.
- Sand all the wood and prime the message center.
- Fill any visible nail holes.
- Apply two top coats of paint.