I don't work well in the cold (Last November in Etna - brrrrrrr!). So, I've had my heater on out in the shop, I've kept the garage door closed most of the time, and I've worn heavier clothes. I've done a few things, but nothing really to write home about.
The main project has been a double dog kennel. I built this for the young couple that bought one of my big tables last year. It was painted a silver color in a style similar to Z-Gallerie or Restoration Hardware furniture. She approached me about building a bench to match the table, and instead we ended up designing a double dog crate/console cabinet that will sit in the area of their dining room and be a pretty place to stash their two dogs when they are entertaining.
The final project - sans drawer knobs (the owner will be adding those!)
Admittedly, this was not the easiest of builds. Originally, it was going to have just one row of drawers, then the design changed to have an open area below the drawers, and finally, the two lower drawers were added. I think this was a good change - so much more useful. But, more work. Also, the door on the left was nothing but trouble! It was tweaked somewhere and it sits a bit proud of the face frame. I even rebuilt the door thinking maybe it was out of square. I moved the hinges around a couple of times, too. Nothing changed. So, I decided it was something they would have to live with. Another challenge was the latch on the left side. The latches were made to screw in from the back. However, the face frame position didn't allow for that. I was able to squeeze the screws in on the right side, but there just wasn't a way to do that on the left. So, I had to come up with another option. I'd used epoxy before to fill some holes in wood and knew that it could also be used as a "glue". So, I used a fast setting epoxy to attach the latch to the face frame. The latches are level on the face frame - even though it doesn't look like it here! But, as a consequence of the fast setting quality of the epoxy, there is a slight gap between the latch and the face frame - about 1/64th of an inch, and looking down on it, you can tell that it isn't completely flush. It won't be noticeable unless it's scrutinized. And, it works.
Another design change was in the rods used on the doors. Originally, I used rebar. I thought the pattern of the rebar would be nice. And, I worried that aluminum rods might bend more easily than rebar. But, my client likes things more modern and streamlined and after seeing the rebar she requested that the rods be changed. I do like the aluminum bars better, too. I just hope they are heavy enough to withstand any pressure from the dogs-and kids.
Overall, this was a fun build. I think they'll enjoy having it in their home and their dogs will be safely crated when their owners are entertaining.