Backdating Wall Cabinets

Why would anyone update when it’s just as easy to backdate?  After all, there’s not much appealing design out there these days; design from the early 20th century is almost always a sure bet to be more interesting than whatever has been marketed for the past 40 years.  Recently a friend acquired some cabinetry which had been removed from the dining room of an area house – built in 1915 – which was being remodeled.  Can you believe people are still removing such things?  She decided to use the material to backdate the wall cabinets in her laundry room.  While her house itself is turn-of-the-previous-century, the laundry room is in a 1970’s addition – and it looked like it.  With the addition of a recycled face frame and cabinet doors, the formerly blase laundry now better relates to the rest of the house:




The nondescript 1970’s cabinets were functional, but not interesting.  The dark stained plywood looks, well, like dark stained plywood. The four doors and their hinges were removed but the cabinet itself remains.


Halfway through!  The five old yellow pine doors were handmade – not from a cabinet shop – and were of irregular dimensions.  Some doors varied by as much as 1/4″ between the top and bottom dimensions.


The doors were arranged in a new configuration to span the entire wall.  An old piece of varnished molding from a recently gutted building, also of yellow pine, was added as a cap.  It’s hard to believe, but all of this material was originally destined for a landfill.


2 Responses to Backdating Wall Cabinets

  1. it’s the one thing that never fails to confound me is the first thing to go when “restoring” a house is the original kitchen. granted, the one in my old house was practically nonexistent and had NO counter space but that was because it had a pantry. they put in some nice stuff in the first two decades even up til the 50s esp. in higher end houses but they get sold, they restore the rest of the house to perfection and then install a kitchen direct from whore Depot with the disgusting but ubiquitous center island. the guy that invented that should have been left on an island. LEAVE THE KITCHENS ALONE or retro-store them.

Leave a reply