Fauxdenza Crendenza!

Two weeks ago, we shared part one of our new “fauxdenza” in the living room made of 3 Akrum wall cabinets from Ikea floating a few inches above the floor.  It was a great solution to a large credenza for hundreds (in some cases, thousands) less.

But the white cabinets alone, left a lot to be desired.  For instance, the top of the cabinets–which normally aren’t visible because they are so high–were very visible here.  So, over the past two weeks, among other projects, we tracked down wood to cover the sides and top and also hardware to finish the look.

Now she’s done!  And she’s a beaut, not to mention a storage goddess.  Getting to this after point wasn’t too hard, but it did take some brainstorming on our part. Lumber yards are seriously hard to come by around here.  We were after one, solid piece of wood that was around 91 inches long, and here’s the kicker–just over 13 inches wide–the width is what killed it.

We spent one Saturday driving around to as many obscure lumber/fence/deck suppliers we could find and no one had anything.  We were absolutely sure our local 84 lumber would have something we could use, but we were met with this:

Wah. Waahhh. So, we headed back to Home Depot (where we started and found nothing wider than 12 inches) with a new plan of attaching smaller planks together to create one large piece.  It wasn’t what I had originally wanted, but if it was the best we could do–then so be it. That’s DIY for ya. We had to buy the lumber, wood glue and clamps and we were right around $100.  Not terrible, but more than I was hoping to spend.  I kept insisting there had to be something we were missing.  Then, when we were headed to check out, we saw huge sheets of pine cabinet grade plywood. They were 96 inches by 63 inches (more than enough for the entire credenza) and get this…$34.  We looked. We smiled. We put everything back that we had picked up and took our big piece of plywood to the back to get cut into the exact sizes we needed.  Woot.

This past weekend, Chris attached veneer to the exposed edges and stained all of the pieces with Minwax Dark Walnut we had on hand and I sealed them all with water-based Polycrylic.

We actually love the look of the plywood.  We were worried it would look so cheap, because it was.  But it looks quite the opposite. Especially after the whole thing was sealed, it took on this incredibly rich tone.  We attached the three parts (one on either side and one board for the top) with 1 inch screws through the inside of the cabinets and into the wood.

As for the edges, we didn’t worry about mitering or angles, we just laid the top on top to square the edges, and attached it.

We are so glad we didn’t settle for Ikea hardware.  Not that there is anything wrong with Ikea hardware, or that we weren’t tempted, we just wanted the whole piece to feel a little higher end than Ikea.  We tracked down these Liberty Hardware pulls at Home Depot and la-hoved them.  Both of us. Immediately.

Apparently, Greta wasn’t completely satisfied until she saw every other option. That’s my girl.

The end result is just as we hoped it would be. It’s clean and slim and purty and has lots of storage. And since the wood and hardware wrap up this project.  How about a budget breakdown in case you are considering doing something similar in your own home?

From Ikea:

3 Akurum Wall Cabinets (30×24)
6 Applad Doors
12 Hinges
6 Hinge Dampers (Soft close. OOoooo)
2 Akurum Suspension Rails–but we only used one

Subtotal: $278
From Home Depot:
Pine Cabinet Plywood
Stain (we had)
Polycrylic sealer (we had) 
6 Liberty Hardware Pulls
Subtotal: $66.10 , minus $10 gift card we had, $55.10
Grand Total: $333.10 
Not too shabby for a custom piece of furniture this large, right? Especially since most floating (or standard) credenzas you buy will run you around and sometimes over a cool grand.  So, needless to say, we’re pretty happy with it.  

Today, we’re filling that bare wall above it and styling the whole she-bang and we’ll hopefully be back with all those photos tomorrow.  Last night I realized, we finally have a surface to decorate for the holidays that’s almost like a mantle.  Which doesn’t for a second mean I’m about to get all crafty with it, but seriously bring on the garland, candlesticks and cloches.


  • […] to have one of those, right?) and most recently the credenza, err fauxdenza (see how we made ours here), which holds most of the girls’ toys. We first introduced our toy storage system back in […]

  • […] Chris Loves Julia also made a version of the fauxdenza that looks amazing. […]

  • Reply January 16, 2013

    Gabbi @ Retro Ranch Reno

    This is gorgeous. I love the stain and pulls you guys used to accent everything. Great job! :)

  • Reply December 3, 2012


    Maybe you answered this in an earlier comment, but I’m doing a similar project with IKEA Billy bookshelves. How did you attach your wood to the top?! That’s the part that has me stumped.

  • Reply October 1, 2012

    Kim @ Yellow Brick Home

    It’s so pretty! We ran into the same problem with ours – the width. Ugh, it was a nightmare, but we found one affordable slab at a local wood warehouse. Well, affordable enough…

  • Reply September 27, 2012

    Nette @ This Dusty House

    I love the dark wood against the crisp white. It was a great idea.

  • Reply September 27, 2012

    Heather @ AccomplishingDreams

    Oh that looks so nice! I like that it covered the screws and separations on the top of it. Great idea!

  • Reply September 26, 2012


    Love it! It definitely looks high-end now. I really like the dark wood + glossy white combo. You guys did a great job!

  • Reply September 26, 2012

    Christina Laming Shelton

    haha! There’s something about 2 year olds and all those drawers! http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?v=4235308074363

  • Reply September 26, 2012

    Julia F

    love it! what a clever idea!

  • Reply September 26, 2012

    Lexy @ The Proper Pinwheel

    SHUT THE FRONT DOOR! You guys are good. That plywood looks le-git. You guys are the best DIYers. Seriously.
    I’m so happy you have a mantle to decorate for the holidays. When I saw the final pic, I immediately thought, “Oh nice! They can decorate for the holidays with frames, prrints, garland, etc.”
    Good onya!

  • Reply September 26, 2012

    Megan R

    Looks awesome! I love that the wood is wrapped around the sides…so chic. I can’t wait to see it styled!

  • Reply September 26, 2012

    Chris loves Julia

    You know what is so funny about your comment? Chris’s exact words were, “This would be the perfect spot for a Christmas village!” Hahahahaha! We don’t have one, but we do have a nice nativity that will find its way there in a couple months for sure. As for the vintage clock, yum. Although, we do already have plans for that (you’ll have to see tomorrow!) a big clock down the road is a definitely possibility.

  • Reply September 26, 2012

    Caitlin @ Desert Domicile

    It looks so good! I love the hardware you chose and that wood top/sides looks nothing like plywood! Can’t wait to see it all decorated!

  • Reply September 26, 2012


    (My whole comment got deleted! Curse!!!!)

    I love this so much! Y’all are so creative! I love the rich color the wood is and the new knobs! I want you to fill those cabinets up with so much stuff and then show us what you have hiding in there. And heck ya to the mantel for Christmas. My mom would toooootally put her little Christmas village houses on there….hahaha but a gorgeous garland, white lights, candles, yes please!!! OOooooo I love Christmas!!

    I don’t know why but I see a nice over sized clock on that wall. Are you guys big vintage clock kind of people??? I don’t know anymore especially with your previous post!

    • Reply February 8, 2016


      There’s a terrific amount of knelgodwe in this article!

  • Reply September 26, 2012


    that looks awesome! i LOVE how you chose to wrap the wood down the sides. very sleek/rich!
    over the next month or two, we will be renovating our two upstairs bedrooms. we live in a cape style house so the ceilings are slanted – i think this floating cabinet idea might be a great storage option along one of the short walls that also has the dreaded baseboard heaters. thanks for the idea!

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