Monday, April 29, 2019

Mini Kitchen - Cabinet Doors - Faux Carved Embellishments

My goal for this kitchen project was to simulate the finish in the photo above, an antique French pine look. The photo is a magazine clipping of a cabinet.  Below the photo are my trial and error paint attempts to mimic the French pine colors. (paint finish will be covered in the next blog).  What is harder to see in the photo are the carved trim details.

In this blog I will explain how I embellished the cabinet doors to look like faux carving using pieces of wood, a fan blade and nail jewels.

You will need:
Cabinet doors to embellish
laser cut oriental hand fan blades
Half round trim – such as dollhouse chair rail molding (small piece)
Tiny nail jewels in different shapes
Coffee stirrers or thin scrap wood, about 1/16th or 1/32nd inch thick
Tools (X-Acto knife, wood glue or white glue, razor saw and miter box to cut molding)
Gesso paint primer
Emery board or sanding stick

Fan Blade Trim
The cabinet doors for the project were one piece, not separated in the middle.  I didn’t cut them apart and just glued the trim across the entire top.  The trim is a single blade from an oriental hand fan – these are sometimes sold as wedding favors and made of sandalwood.  Try the oriental grocery stores or gift shops or on Ebay.

Laser cut fretwork hand fan - used one blade for trim

  1. First, separate one blade from the fan - there will be an almost invisible knot of clear thread holding the blades together.  Just gently slide your #11 pointed knife blade under the knot and cut it.  There may be two knots.
  2. Cut the fan down the middle lengthwise to get two pieces that are mirror images (photo below).  Press the X-acto knife along the middle – don’t drag it.  If you drag the knife across the fretwork the small pieces will break.
  3. You may have to trim off some of the border also.  It won’t be exactly square but you are only using part of the design, that won’t be noticeable.  Use a straight edge and your X-Acto to trim the border (area with no fretwork).
  4.  Glue fretwork trim across top of doors.  Use tiny little dots of glue on the fretwork so it doesn’t seep into the open spaces. Let it dry.  Trim any that extends above the door with scissors or X-acto knife.

Tiny dots of glue on back of fretwork

Corner Trim
You will use these pieces: piece of coffee stirrer, piece of half-round (or chair rail), nail jewels.

  1. Cut the half round trim into small pieces wide enough to match the width of the cabinet frame.
  2. Cut the coffee stirrers into small pieces, about 5/8 inch long.  Round two corners as in the photo.
  3. Glue the half round to the top end of the rounded coffee stirrer piece.
  4. Glue on the nail jewels like the photo.  Glue the stack at the top corners of the door frame below the fretwork (photo below).
  5. When dry, base coat the entire piece with Gesso to prep for the faux paint technique.

Next time I will describe how to create the faux antique pine paint effect.  Here is a preview of what the cardboard cabinet doors look like after the faux finish.