Layout the Island

This is where we start to veer off into the customization part of the Ikea build.  We wanted a large custom island with overhang for seating and raised panels for a more custom look.    We started by building a wall around the island.

Start_Island

I just nailed down 2x4s and pulled the electricians island outlet run through the 2×4.  We placed the island cabinets inside so make sure the dimensions were correct and leveled them.  Next I framed out the walls using pretty standard framing techniques.  You can use screws 3″ screws or a framing nailer to put walls like these together.

Frame_Island

After that I skinned the island with 3×4 birch plywood and maple to create a solid surface.

Start_island_skin

You can see here that the island walls are just 3/4 plywood.  The kitchen side of the island has simple shaker legs that were put together using a miter saw and a Porter Cable Quick Jig.  The Quick jig is the ultimate fast joinery tool.  A leg like that can be assembled in 5 minutes. with pocket holes at 90 degrees.  I’ll add photos to show how its done.

The leg on the front of the island is getting started and you can see that it has a raised panel.  These are also pretty easy to put together with the quick jig and i’ll draw out how i did that using varying thicknesses of plywood.

Its probably worth noting that the island cabinets are attached at the sides using pocket hole screws as well as the back in order to stabilize them.  The approach ikea recommends where the entire island is floating on 4 legs per cabinet seems pretty unstable to me so i’m not sure how it would work out otherwise.

Here is a bit more finished.

More_cabinet_skinned

Eventually there will be plywood triangle shelves in that akward section above where there are two almost “legs” at a right angle.

Raised panel legs

The front legs are 9″ wide raised panels using the quick jig.  They are raised panels on three sides to give a more custom look.  Everything else will be skinned in flat 3/4 plywood then built up using trim to create the raised panel look there.island_with_plywood

Finally, I just nailed varying thickness trim onto the island to create raised panels for the backs and sides.  I usually do a 3×4 baseboard  and half inch vertical pieces so that  there is always a nice way to terminate a piece into the side of the baseboard.

Panels Done

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