A long, long time ago (let’s call it August), Scott and I took a field trip to one of our favorite second-hand stores, Jubilee. While we weren’t planning on bringing home anything for our media wall that day, well, we did! Remember?:
During a burst of motivation and productivity, we finally incorporated it into our living room, where it holds all of our media gear – the television, speakers, our receiver and Playstation, with drawers that keep miscellaneous cables, dominoes and inappropriate card games handy. (You can see this was pre-tile, as we still have subfloor there, on the left.)
Okay, obviously we’re not calling the above photo an ‘after’ by any means! After all, there are (and were) a few things to address to make the credenza work for us, our space and our current media equipment:
- Those speakers! Scott is all about having the proper surround sound for movie watching, sports and – most importantly – listening to our record collection, and although I sincerely appreciate this, I just cannot get on board with these big, light-sucking boxes anymore. Consider the above very, very temporary.
- We are, however, on board with in-wall speakers, which is totally in Scott’s wheelhouse, so we’ll be moving forward with that once he decides and pulls the trigger.
- With that said, we had initial thoughts to create a built-in around the credenza (similar to our last wall unit, which stayed with our tenants in the condo), but now we’re leaning towards something much more minimal (and who knows, we could change our minds again!). Right this second, we’d hang my grandparents clock above the television – which will eventually be wall mounted – and use the credenza top as a resting place for some books, a vase of flowers and things; things that are pretty.
- As for what we’ve already done to modify the credenza: You might notice in the first photo that the center of the unit with the sliding doors is slightly recessed. In the second photo, it’s now flush with the drawers to its left and right! Let’s talk about that …
Once we pulled the credenza in place and tried to put our receiver and Playstation in the middle section, we quickly realized that there wasn’t enough depth to accommodate our hulking equipment. (Some fast measurements told us we might barely squeeze everything in, so we had high hopes it would work – nope!). We turned the whole unit on its side, and we were pleasantly surprised to see that all we’d need to do is unscrew the center-panel-bottom (got that?), shave down each side so it could move forward and flush, then screw everything back into place.
Because the front lip of the center-panel-bottom had the ridges for the sliding doors, this was our only option to make it work. Scott used his multi-tool to easily take off the 4″ or so that were needed to slide the whole section forward, then drilled pilot holes for his new screw placement. Everything went back together seamlessly – success! (Bonus: By moving the entire center-panel-bottom forward, we gained open air space in the back. This would, in turn, allow for better air flow for our media equipment.)
The clean lines of this credenza are definitely what drew us in, but the piece itself didn’t feel too precious to hack; it’s built mostly from plywood with a veneer. With this in mind, we went one step further and used our hole saw to create a pass-through for cables to run from behind the credenza and into the middle unit – therefore keeping messy cables off the floor. (You know how we feel about cables!)
Now, we’re able to slide the doors to the right for access to the receiver, and to the left for the Playstation. If both items are in use, we’ll center the doors (for example, if we’re having a Netflix marathon) to allow for better airflow and remote use.
As a full disclosure, we’re on the fence regarding the finish of the credenza itself. Do we like the wood tone? (Sometimes.) Is the veneer too orange for our tastes? (Kind of.) Ugh, is that a chip in the veneer? (Damn!) But until the living room becomes more pulled together, we’re having a hard time wrapping our heads around alternatives. Paint? A concrete top? A marble top? (Oooh!)
Then again, another streak of motivation and productivity may find this credenza made over sooner than later… (It’s all about the mood, you know?)