August 14, 2012

TV Wall and a Floating Shelf

I confess, we are one of those couples whose dining table is their coffee table.  We have a real dining room, with a wonderful dining table, but we never eat there.    We eat in front of the TV.  Though it's not ideal, after a long day of work, sometimes all you really want is to sit together, with no need for conversation.  Because of this, I was really sick of staring at everything around the TV - which included the cheap TV stand I bought years ago when I got my studio apartment (sans doors, as they had fallen off after all the moving around), as well as tons of cords for the speaker / tv / media system.  So,when most women ask for jewelry and clothing etc for their birthdays, I asked that we spend time remodeling this wall.  The project began in March, and we finally finished enough to post pics this past weekend.

I hated the previous setup so much that I didn't even take before photos, so instead I'll show you a photo from our last holiday party, where the ugly TV cabinet is in the background of all my super friends in their fun "recycled" holiday attire.

The ugly cabinet went straight to the curb (where we can always count on someone to come by to pick up old stuff).  

I drew everything exactly as I wanted it on SketchUp, and my wonderful husband did the rest. 

He spent hours researching the right components, and then more hours in the attic running the necessary cables from the TV location to the new component location (above the basement stairs).  He also cut new speakers into the wall per my dimensions.  (And would you believe the holes were correct and required no drywall patching?!?)

The main glitch was actually the install of the floating shelf.  Our first attempt didn't work.  We did some more research, and figured out a different approach, which worked perfectly.

While still looking for a center channel speaker (trying to find something that's not just boring, boxy, and black) as well as some decorative accessories for the shelf, we're close enough to done so I wanted to share.

And for those of you who might want to know more about hanging the floating shelf, here's what we did:

The shelf has a 1" hollow space in the back.

My husband used wood-glue to glue (2) 1/2" pieces of wood together for cleats.  Then he used a pocket-hole jig to pre-drill holes.

Used a stud-finder to make sure we were drilling into something solid.

Mounted the first cleat on the wall.

Note the line above (drawn before cleat was mounted) to keep cleat level.

Used the level for the remaining cleats (starting with outside first and working our way in).  I was asked to point out that the level was standing upright for actual leveling... here he was just using it for the straight edge.

Once the cleats were installed, the shelf slid perfectly into place!