Tuesday, March 16, 2010


I had several of you say you liked my kitchen island during my Cottage Kitchen Makeover. I thought I would tell you how it came to be. My aunt Chloe had given my mom an old porcelain top table just like this one...........

I pulled this picture from Ebay if you're interested in buying it and building your own island! (it's in PA, if you wanna pick it up. LOL) Mom didn't really have a place for the table, so it got handed down to me. I have always wanted an island, but our last house was too small, so when we moved into this house I KNEW I would get my island. Our kitchen had the perfect, wide open spot in the middle just calling for an island...now I just had to find one. (Insert table here.) :) The table would have been a cute island all on it's own, but I wanted it to be a smidge higher than it was and also wanted some extra storage, so I decided to build around it and to make it what I really wanted. I first started by measuring how big the top was, I wanted the base to measure the same as the top. After measuring I cut out MDF (medium desity fiberboard, for those that aren't familiar with it is an engineered wood product) to the same dimension as the top. I made sure the table legs were the same distance from the outside corners of the base and screwed the table legs to the base from underneath. (I just flipped the table on it's top and laid the bottom piece of MDF on the legs to get to the bottom to screw it on.)

Here's a pic of the base screwed to the original table legs.

I did have to do a little thinking before I put all this together. I had gone to the store and found a cabinet door that was the appropriate height...........I found the door first so I would know how wide to make my inside compartments. (hence, the width of the cabinet door determined where I would place my inside compartment wall.

Here's a pic of the door....I just screwed the hinges directly into the old table leg.

But before the door was attached I had to build the inside and outside walls of the island. I cut the side and front pieces from MDF as well, to sit inside the old legs and apron and just screwed it in place through the bottom of the island and also used the apron to screw into. (the pieces came above the apron inside) This held it firmly in place on all three sides. I cut out beadboard panels and applied them to the MDF sides and front. I used beaded screen trim (that was the name) to trim out around each panel that I put on and also around the base plate.

I built the inside wall the same way, screwing it from the bottom base and also through the MDF back that I put on. I put the inside wall in BEFORE I put the beadboard panels on the outside, you don't want to see the ugly screws and the beadboard will cover those up. :) I also built the dividing shelf the same way...........cut it out, and screw it in from each side. (again before the beadboard on the outside.

This is a pic of the shelf..see where I screwed it in place through the middle wall?

I bought two baskets that slid into these sections....I found the baskets first, then put the shelf in place according to the heights of the baskets.

Do you see the little strip of wood at the top of the back panel? We put that there, just so we would have some extra support from the outside, so it wouldn't push in and to have extra places to screw the MDF to. (I'm sure it would have been fine without it because the MDF was so thick, but I have three boys so we were trying to give it extra umph!) I am convinced boys can tear up anything!!!!

Here's the beaded trim up close.

This is a picture of the front of the island. OH, I forgot to tell you that you have to remove the front of the drawer from the drawer itself because you can't have a drawer inside the cabinet for all the walls and shelves. I just screwed the front back on so it would look like it had a drawer. I didn't want a hole there! LOL

This area of the old apron, above where the baskets go, looked very plain so I put some trim in a rectangular fashion and made a faux drawer there. I screwed on a crystal knob that matches the ones I used on my kitchen cabinets. Looks so much better than the plain, empty space that was there before.

After everything was put together, we flipped the whole thing over and installed four rolling caster wheels. (easy to move around and clean under!) After than, I primed then painted the whole island bottom with a nice bright white. I also added the antique glass towel bar on the one end. (mom gave me that too, THANKS MOM!!) My mom reads my blog too. ;)

That's about it! It sounds a lot more complicated than it actually was. If I can do this, YOU can do this!

Here is a pic of the glass towel bar in place with my lovely tea towels I got on clearance from Kohls. I LOVE pink and green! :)

Here's the basket in place. I used the top basket for all my bread and buns and the bottom basket is for chips and cookies. :) I keep large cereal boxes and sodas behind the door. It is amazing how much this island can hold! and to think it went from a shabby old table, to a sweet little island. I love to repurpose things, especially when they started out as an old family piece like this one.

Hope this inspires you to go transform something so so, into something sweet and spectacular!
I joined Get Your Craft On at Today's Creative Blog, It's so Very Renovated at It's So Very Cheri and White Wednesday over at Faded Charm.

Build{hers} club Button



Robyn said...

Melissa, that's an amazing and WONDERFUL transformation! It's gorgeous and it still retains it's charm while being VERY functional for your family...great job!

Brenda Pruitt said...

You're certainly braver than I am. And you did a phenomenal job! You could make these and easily sell them. I am so impressed with all that you do!

Lettered Cottage said...

It's FANTABULOUS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

SO awesome....I want one!
Oh wait, no room. :-(

Maybe in our next house!

Crystal Rose Cottage said...

Melissa....YOu are quite the carpenter! I love how you transformed that table into an island. If I didn't already have one I would definitely use your idea! I am debating on painting my island a bright white....my husband said "no way" on painting the other cabinets. I am with him on this as it is too much work. You can see my kitchen on a post from last summer. I am doing a little sprucing up of my kitchen on a budget!~Patti

Amanda Lee said...

Melissa, I just love this island! Thanks for letting me know you were posting the "how-to". this one is definitely going into my "extraordinarily good ideas" file!

My Cottage Charm said...

Amanda, You're very welcome!

Layla, when you buy your next house I want to see this island in your kitchen! :-) LOL

Patti, I went and looked at your kitchen, I think your island would look great painted! :)

Bonnie Schulte said...

Wow,what a wonderful job you did with this table. I thought I was handy around the house, but I could NEVER make anything, like this island.
I love it!!!

Katie Olthoff said...

That is great! I used a very similar table top in my kitchen, too! Great job!

mariondee-designs said...

Hi Melissa, all I can say is WOW! I would never have thought to convert the table into an island! It turned out just perfect.. I also just read your previous post and can't believe the transformation of that wall. What a difference.. I love it! take care, Maryann

Lemon Lane Studio said...

Wow, Melissa! Your kitchen is so pretty and the more you show us the details, the more amazing it gets. I adore that towel bar.

afistfullofweeds* said...

Iam getting ready to move. My kitchen now has an island, and I can't imagine not having one in the new house, so...guess what Iam gonna be doing?? Love your blog Melissa!! Rhonda

Sandy @ My Shabby Streamside Studio said...

Yikes that was great! I love girls that aren't afraid of power tools.


Sandy @ My Shabby Streamside Studio

My Cottage Charm said...

Sandy, power tools are my best friends! :) I once made some banners for our church and they gave me a love offering for doing them. My pastor asked me if I was going to by myself something nice..I said, "yep, a compound miter saw"! :) LOL

Debbie~ said...

I looove it, I wish I had room for one, but my kitchen is too tiny, darn it anyway! Maybe someday! Debbie @ Cottage Hann~Me~Downs

FairfieldHouse said...


I love this idea! Thank you for sharing it with us. I am going to be using this one.


Anonymous said...

You fooled me...I thought that was a very expensive island. Wow! Great job! I only wish I could manage something like that...and, I doubt my husband with all his "power tools" could do it either. lol.

Ticking and Toile said...

wow ~ I'm impressed! You did a fantastic job!! Wonderful....just found your blog...don't ask me how! ha ha :)

Anyway, come by & see my frenchy bedroom redo and enter my fabulous jeanne d'arc giveaway!!


Elle Jay Bee said...

I LOVE This!!! Thank you so much for sending me the link. It is fabulous and you are so very talented!!


gail@My Repurposed Life said...

fantastic! Earlier this morning I went looking around AGAIN to see what I could repurpose. I had already checked 2 antique dressers, two old chest of drawers. Today, I thought about using jamie's old desk (in her room) I asked her this morning if I could use it, and she said "sure, I'd love to see it transformed". So, I'm itching to start on that, but trying to stay focused on the project at hand. . . painting the kitchen table and chairs!
I love how you changed up this piece! I of course will be needing a top for my new island. hmmmm

Connie Hastings said...

You never cease to amaze me with your talents!! I love to see what you are up to next!! :)

Ally said...

Oh that's lovely. We did a kitchen island last year out of a dresser and I love it! Wish I could've found a top like that!

Danielle said...

Saw this a week ago and just had to make my own. :) I was out shopping and found this EXACT table at an antique store for $40, but decided to do mine out of an old desk. I took a lot of tips from you. Look for the blog (http://focusdoctor.blogspot.com) later this week, as I'll be mentioning you for a big thanks!! You gave me the confidence to do my own. :) :)

monah http://graciouscottage.com/ said...


Your kitchen is so pretty from top to bottom. Your decorating really made it.

Lynn MacKerell @ Antiques for Today's Lifestyle said...

Melissa, I LOVE the kitchen island you created from the vintage table. You are so creative. I will be following you to see what you do next! If you have a chance, I would be honored if you would also check out my new blog.

Sawdust Girl said...

Missy, you are one smart cookie! Do you hear me? Smart Cookie!

imsteelefullofscrap said...

Wow that is just so neat that you made that out of a table I would have never thought of making it into an island for the kitchen you are very talented.
Wish my kitchen was big enough I could do that maybe someday thank you for the great inspiration

Wendy@Once upon a rose haven said...

What a fabulous job! I LOVE it!
Blessings ~Wendy

The Olde Farmhouse on Windmill Hill said...

This is awesome! Somehow I missed this post previously... Now I'm on the lookout for a table like this. :) I NEED an island! ~Rachel

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