Apothecary: Cabinet redo

So, this week, I made a lot of new things, but I also revisited a few items I was unhappy with. As you can see below, I made a very simple and plain chest of drawers for my set. However, it didn’t fit the vibe I was going for, and it wasn’t efficient at storing the items I wanted it to store, so I decided to make an apothecary cabinet instead (well, my interpretation of one anyway).

Another problem I’d been having was that my books and scrolls, which I had put on top of the chest of drawers, would always topple over at the smallest motion. To fix this, and to break up the wall of brown, I did away completely with the top drawer by cutting off the top and reshaping the sides. My books withstood the shake test really well, now supported by the raised sides of the cabinet.

After that, I took out the central partition and the drawers on either side. after playing around with a few different configurations I decided to make a few clusters of different sized drawers, to give the piece a bit of variety, and more of a busy apothecary cabinet feel.

cabinet redo

This time I used the stiff card from an old chocolate box to make my drawers, as I found it did not buckle and crinkle when painted, as the cardboard I used to make the frame did. All the drawers are made with card except the bottom drawer, chich just had its handles changed to match the rest of the cabinet.

To make the drawer knobs I first tried to use jewelry beads, but they were really difficult to paint. What I ended up doing was making them from air dry clay, painting them to look like brass, then glueing them on.

Overall I’m happier with my new cabinet, as it looks more authentic and is very good at storing different things, such as tools, food, ingredients, etc. However I still think there’s room for improvement. For starters the cabinet does not look truly wooden. I would definitely consider making it from real wood if I were to make it again.

Painting also seems to be an issue, as even when dry, most of the drawers do not slide open and shut easily (even though it is not too tight a fit, they slid fine when unpainted). In future, instead of paint I would use paper to line and cover any furniture made from card. As a result of the drawers being a bit ‘sticky’, I’m afraid of tearing off the drawer knobs if I just try to yank them open, so I have to pull the drawers open by gripping the side edges and easing them gently.

It seems there are more things I dislike about this cabinet, but really I’m always looking for imperfections. I’m rarely fully satisfied with my work, but I’m learning (slowly) to stop trying to fiddle with it and move on to the next thing. Because the next thing will be better, and the one after that, and the one after that.

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