Monday, May 28, 2012

Finished isn't finished

Finished!  After about 3 more hours Saturday the desk is finally complete.  Total work time was approximately 8 hours.  However, that doesn't count the three trips to the store for materials - four, if you count the one Mandy made for me after I cut the last board wrong (short by 1 inch).  Score:  Ana White's time estimate:  1.  My ego:  0.

There's a few key differences in my build compared to the instructions.  Mandy asked me if I was going to describe the changes on my blog.  My response:  "That's not my genre."  I'll leave the "how to" to her blog.  This blog is more for the "how come..."

Speaking of asking "how come" - how come I get plenty of unsolicited input on all sorts of subjects from the future owner of this desk, but when I ask for input on key decisions for the project at hand I get nothing?

Q: (Via phone call from the store)  "Hey babe, what kind of wood would you prefer?  Oak, maple, pine?"
A:  "Dunno.  Whatever's cheapest."

Q:  (right after the shelf units were built) "Do you want me to put trim over the exposed edges of plywood?"
A:  "Dunno.  Whatever you think."

Q:  (right before finishing table top) "Do you want the shelves placed all the way to the ends of the table top or inset slightly?
A:  "Dunno.  Whatever's easiest for ya."

Just for the record, I didn't pick what was cheapest or easiest in any of the above instances. It seems that perhaps she doesn't care so much about the technical details, more that she is getting a desk and that I'm building it (and perhaps that she gets to blog about it).

Man thought process:  Labor + materials = finished product.  Quality of the resultant depends on quality of the inputs.

Woman thought process:  I need more craft space.  I'll bet he'll build it for me if I give him a hint and wear my tight jeans.  And then I'll get to blog about it!

So I started this post by saying it's finished.  It's not.  The nail holes still need filled in and then it needs painted.  These are both tasks that Mandy wants to do.  This means to Mandy that now she needs to pick out a color to paint it.  What it means to me is that I won't be able to park in the garage for another week.


What is depicted in the image below?  Hint:  it's frustrating.


  1. I think you did a great job! The technical stuff she obviously feels safe letting you decide. And as the daughter of a handy guy and a crafter/quilter myself I recognize inset screw joints one of which looks a little chewed up.

  2. Great job!! I love that desk. I LOL at the tight jeans comment. I'm the same way with my husband when he builds me furniture. What every you think is best dear!

  3. I'm really enjoying your blog so far!!! it's such a fun insight!! and i think comparing your posts to mandy's will also be a fun experiment ;) thanks for this blog! and thanks for helping Mandy make pretty things :)

  4. hehe this is funny! I told hubby about your blog, his response? "Don't think you are going to rope me into trying that!"

  5. Yeah for Mandy's husband! I am a cake/cookie baker/decorator on the side, my sweet-adorable (very masculine/firefighting) husband helps me. Who would have ever thought he could roll fondant, ice cookies, arange platters, transport, etc. etc. etc... Husbands that participate are worth their weight in Gold!

  6. Pocket screws/kreg jig! I had my physicist husband read your blog so he can see he's not alone, but in our world I'm the handier one, though he's reluctant to admit it!

  7. pocket holes. Do you have a kreg jig or did you have to do it with a plain old drill bit and go in at an angle? I think it looks great and I love your man thought process versus the woman thought process. So true.

  8. Love your blog! Cracks me up. I love the desk can you make me one just like that but I want it to be a cutting table :) hehe

  9. add me to the fan list and I too recognized the chewed up angled screw placement.
    keep up the good work.

  10. Yep, woman logic pretty much always calls for tight pants... haha!

  11. Just found your blog tonight ... and for a few short minutes, I was wondering if my husband was blogging when I wasn't looking. But I just had to comment when I saw this post. Why didn't Mandy build her own desk? Ana White and Kreg are awesome, she could totally do this without any blows to your ego. :) I built my own desk but I still have to write the blog post about it ... You did a great job on the desk, despite the mangled pocket screw placement.

    I haven't been able to park in the garage for months now ... but that's because my projects take up my side. My husband gets to park in the garage every day. And I'm not sure he'd know what to do with my Kreg jig ... Don't tell him I said that!


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