Well this was an unexpected success!! I say that because almost all my larger scale wood working projects are done by Curtis, but this one was all me! Curtis said he would help me out in making this hood fan cover, but he said I would have to wait until the fall....ppppfffttt, as if!! I can't wait that long! If I want something done, I want it done now! Anyone else guilty of that?? So in this case I decided it was about time I try to tackle a larger wood project myself and just make it happen! I mean I can use a saw and drill, so how hard can it be right??
So here's what I was starting with. Your standard build hood fan with cabinets above the stove. It lacked any character, and was rather boring. I had already added the cubbies above the cabinets to fill in that dead space, and also recently had the subway tile backsplash done.
I knew I wanted a custom looking hood fan cover, but also knew I couldn't afford to loose the storage in the cabinets above. Our kitchen is still very much original and small. So I had to figure out a way to still have access to the cabinet space while creating a custom looking piece. I took a look on Pinterest and came across this blog post by Simply Beautiful by Angela blog.
It was a genius idea! Create a cover that hinges on the top so I can open it like a garage door almost. Wahoooo!! I was so thankful I found her post and was eager to figure this out.
I was lucky that my existing hood fan had the buttons accessible from the bottom. If yours doesn't, there are inexpensive options you could consider to replace yours for under $200. Here's one that I found at Home Depot you could check out as an affordable option.
I really had to customize this entire build as the cabinets that were surrounding the area were stuck out by a 1/2 inch and I only had a small space to work in before I started to run into the cabinet doors swinging open. You will more than likely have to do the same as not all kitchens are created and built equally
Alright so let's get started! The first thing I did was remove the cabinet doors from above. Then I brainstormed building a box base for the hood fan cover. This base would be my foundation for everything else above to get attached to.
Supplies Needed for Base Box
Air Gun with 1 1/2" brad nails
1/2" presanded plywood for my sides
1 x 2" pine strips for support braces
1x8" pine for front cover
*You can see those little blocks in the far back corners. Again I am no wood worker and am truly winging it here guys! I added those for additional support and thought I may need them in the future when I attach my angled sides.
How I assembled the box:
I used wood glue and my air gun through the front of my 1x8 to attach it to my 1/2" thick plywood sides. I opted to go with my corners butting up together rather than at a 45 degree angle. I personally don't mind the look of this, but some people may prefer the 45 degree corners for a cleaner look. To attach the 1 x2's, again I just used some wood glue and my trusty air gun! Man I love that tool!
To attach the base box I first did a dry fit just to make sure everything went over the hood fan smoothly. Then with some
1 1/2" wood screws and my drill, I went through my back of the 1x2" pine board and straight into the lower wood portion of my upper cabinet. I attached 3 screws to securely anchor it to the cabinet.
YAY I got this far and am not gonna lie...I am already very proud of myself and even love the look of it at this point, lol! Did I know what I was going to do next?? Not really! I knew I needed to somehow make some angled side walls and then figure out how I was going to attach them to my box. I did ponder over this for quite some time and couldn't quite figure out how to do it with my odd little cabinet space issues above. So the first thing I did was try and figure out my angles for the side walls. I ended up coming up with this idea (you can slide through the pics below)
I took a piece of bristle board and placed it against a long piece of wood that I angled from the top of my cabinet to the base box. Then with my pencil I drew a line down the wood and onto the bristle board. Now I had my angle and my template for the walls. I cut out the template and used this as my guide on some scrap plywood. In hind sight I wished I used some nicer pre-sanded plywood because its a cleaner look, but I was just using what I had on hand. To cut out the shape I used my jigsaw.
In order to attach it, I nailed some scrap wood on the interior edge of the cabinet and then went through the side of the angled wall into that scrap wood with my nail gun. Esthetically it ain't gonna win any awards, but it was what I came up with and seemed to work well to get the job done.
Told you guys, I'm no carpenter, lol!! I repeated this on the other side. I also realized here that I would need to add a 1x2 above my top cabinet. This gave me the extra space I would need to place my upcoming hinged door I was going to make. If you don't have this extra space, you would need to account for where your hinge will go while making your angled wall side cuts and be sure that your top tip doesn't go right up to the top of your cabinet edge. Am I making any sense??
Now I am ready for the last part of the puzzle which is my cover. I took a look at some design ideas on Pinterest, and eventually settled on something that I knew I could achieve with my skill level and also something that I loved the clean look of.
I went with this design that has a simple flat trim and mimics the look of board and batten. Perfect for my house as this is the trim we pretty much have everywhere, flat and simple!
I went to Home Depot and picked up the smallest piece of presanded wood I could find. The price of wood is so high right now and I didn't want to over spend on a project that is suppose to be saving me money in the end by doing it myself. Here's what I bought....
Yup that's almost $35 for a small board! OH well what can ya do?? At least most of the other wood I had on hand.
....and here's the wood I used for the trim...
Again I used some wood glue and my air gun with 1/2" brad nails to assemble my door front. I didn't angle my corners, because I was going for easy here. Also it's not even noticeable once it's all stained and the wood filler is applied in the seams.
I stained everything in Varathane's Briarsmoke. It's a beautiful warm grey and goes perfectly with the other wood tones in our home.
To attach the door, I used an Everbilt continuous hinge that I purchased at Home Depot. This is also what Angela used on her door as well and it works perfectly!
I attached it with small gold wood screws on the underside of the top of the door and then onto the very top 1x2 that I attached to the upper cabinet. You can see in the picture below that I kinda messed up the first time I attached the hinge....it was too low and the door didn't close and match up properly with the base box, so I had to move it up.
Woopie!! Now I have a functioning door that opens and closes!! Next I decided to add the same trim to the front of my box base. I love how that dressed it up and tied in so nicely with the cover.
Then finished staining the rest of the box and sides and stood back to admire my hard work thus far!!
So...am I done?? Not yet! I still need to attach the gas hinges I bought from Amazon to allow the door to slow open and close. This was the only request Curtis made while I took over the kitchen making this. It's a great idea though! I can barely hold up the door and get out what I need. I'm only 5,2' so I need as much help I can get!
Once I attach the gas hinges I will be sure to add that info to this post!
Hopefully this post gives you some ideas of how you too can create a custom looking hood fan cover for your above your own stove! I did this all by myself and am so incredibly proud, so again if I can do it so can YOU! I came in at around $70 to make it. For some of you that might be a bit more if you have to purchase more wood than I did, or have to buy a new vent fan.
Now I have a more custom looking kitchen and it brings me so much joy to walk in here and see what I built!