Apothecary Console

Apothecary Console
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This beautiful apothecary console features three open cubbies perfect for storing entertainment controllers, four drawers and two cabinets, all concealed by door fronts that look like an apothecary cabinet. Loved by so many, this console is easy to build and can add that touch of character to your family room.

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Apothecary Console

Apothecary Console
Dimensions are shown above.


Shopping List

2 – Sheets of 3/4″ MDF or Plywood, cut into 15 1/2″ wide strips, 8′ Long 1 – 1/4″ Plywood or Lauan or MDF (for the back) 1 – 12′ 1×6 AND 1- 8′ 1×6 Boards 2 – 1×2 Boards 2″ Screws 1 1/4″ Screws Wood Glue Wood Filler and Finishing Supplies

Common Materials
120 grit sandpaper
wood conditioner
paint brush
Cut List

3 – 1×16 @ 61 1/2″ (Shelves) 2 – 1×16 @ 16 1/4″ (Bottom Dividers) 2 – 1×16 @ 14 3/4″ (Drawer Dividers) 2 – 1×16 @ 7″ (Top Dividers) 2- 1×16 @ 27″ (Sides) 1 – 1/4″ Plywood @ 63 x 27″ (Back) 3 – 1×6 @ 65″ (Top) 1 – 1×2 @ 61 1/2″ (Inset front footer) 2 – 1×2 @ 15 1/2″ (Side Footer) 1 – 1×2 @ 64 1/2″ (Front Footer)

Tape Measure
Speed Square
Safety Glasses
Hearing Protection
Kreg Jig
Circular Saw
Brad Nailer
Power Sander
General Instructions

Remember, you can click on images to see a larger view. Work on a clean level surface. Take a square of your project after each step. Use good straight boards. Mark out joints on both sides before fastening. If you are working with MDF, use drywall screws to avoid splitting the MDF and be sure to countersink and predrill the entire length of the screw. Avoid fastening within 1″ of the ends of a board if you are using MDF to prevent splitting. Use glue unless otherwise directed. Use necessary safety precautions and equipment. The box of this cabinet is built with 1x16s (read here on how to get a 1×16). You can also use 1 1×12 width or even a 1×10 width (for a console size, especially if you are using this as a flat panel media console and space is at a premium).


Step 1

Box Partitions Begin by marking out all the joints on both sides of the boards as shown above. Don’t forget that the boards are 3/4″ thick. Then beginning on the bottom partition (yellow) attach the green partition. Now attach the yellow boards to the purple. Finally, attach the blue boards to the purple. Use 2″ screws and glue. Remember, you can click on images to see a full size view.

Step 2

Finish the Box Begin by marking joints on both sides of the boards. Then attach with 2″ screws and glue the top to the top partitions. Then attach the sides to all of the shelves and the top, ash shown above.

Step 3

Back Cut your 1/4″ plywood as shown above. Then use 1 1/4″ nails and glue to attach the back to the box. Don’t forget to fasten to all of the partitions and shelves. Make sure your project is nice and square before attaching the back. The measurements shown here are slightly different from the cut list because I choose to make the cabinet slightly taller for drawer reasons, but either measurement would work just fine.

Step 4

Top Using 1 1/4″ screws and glue, fasten the top boards to the top. Notice that there is a 1″ overhang on the front and the sides, but the back rests flush with the back edge of the sides.

Step 5

Step 6

Footer, Front Using 1 1/4″ Screws or nails and glue, fasten the front footer to the pieces from step 5. Keep outside edges flush.

Step 7

Drawers and Doors: Click here for Part 2 


Annalea (not verified)

Thu, 08/05/2010 - 08:05

Oh Anna, don't let this blog interfere any more with mothering than it has to. Yes, it's an important thing you're doing, helping so many people to be able to learn new skills, beautify their homes, gain confidence and independence . . . but we're all grown-ups, and don't need you like Grace does.

If your production goes down by half, or 75%, because you're taking care of your daughter, don't sweat it! You have such a huge catalog of plans now that there's plenty to keep us groupies busy for quite some time. ;o)

As one whose husband has worked himself far, far too hard, for too many hours while his little children were growing up, trust me on this one. We'll all live just fine if Knock-Off Wood slows down. Grace's growth isn't going to slow any, and she'll be so big before you know it . . . and now is the time to build the foundation of your relationship for the rest of your lives.

I know how attractive it is (ay, irresistible sometimes!) to throw myself into something that's a good cause, and take my mind off of my children. It's good to have something "on the side" . . . but there's one person in the world for whom there is no substitute: Grace's mom. Be her mother, first. Be an amazing, wonderful, lovely, loving mother to your little girl, and wife to your good husband. Then, after that, be the amazing Ana of Knock-Off Wood.

We'll all understand. :o) And Grace will thank you for the rest of her life.

Wolfie (not verified)

Thu, 08/05/2010 - 21:57

I LOVE this! I've been wanting for my craft room. I'll need to modify it a bit because i actually need/want the smaller drawers, but you're definitely made this task much easier. Thank you!

Lex (not verified)

Fri, 08/13/2010 - 09:48

Ooh, I see this as a dresser for my sons' room. I think I will do 8 drawers instead of 4 drawers and 2 cabinet doors, but with your step-by-step instructions and idiot-proof diagrams, even I can easily see the changes I need to make. Beautiful, beautiful. My husband is out buying the wood right now to make them matching twin Farmhouse beds. Love your blog, you seriously rock! <3 <3

Jenn Hoff (not verified)

Thu, 09/02/2010 - 07:43

Haha- that's EXACTLY what I keep thinking of! I want one just because of that episode! And I keep hearing in my head, "Who even knows what an apothecary is?!" And Chandler says, "A pharmacist." ....Awkward silence.....
Ana, this is absolutely beautiful. I can't wait to build it! And Kaptain Spalding, yours made my jaw drop open. Wow.

Molly (not verified)

Fri, 09/03/2010 - 13:51

OMG!!!! I am so glad I found your blog! I cannot wait to make this cabinet-it is beautiful.
Thanks so much for the great plans :)

Tyler (not verified)

Thu, 10/21/2010 - 18:55

This was a sweet project. It totally changed our family room! I would suggest using an extra 1x2 on the back if you're on carpet because ours tilts toward the back due to poor support. But it still looks killer.

Stephanie Clark (not verified)

Wed, 11/10/2010 - 04:11

This is an AWESOME project. My hubby and I have been looking for a dresser to re purpose for a TV Console. We thought of removing the top drawers for component shelves, but just have not found the right dresser yet.

Your design is perfect for what we pictured. I emailed my hubby the links at work and he thought it was "sexy". I think we are going to give it a try. Thanks so much!

Christina (not verified)

Wed, 11/17/2010 - 06:19

This is gorgeous - and perfect! I'm tempted to try it even though my husband is going to call me crazy!

Aunt LoLo (not verified)

Sat, 11/20/2010 - 07:44

Ooh, gorgeous!!! I've been looking all over your site for something I could use in the living room. I need a console sized cabinet. It needs to be rustic, to match my Benchwright PB furniture in the room, but it also needs to have cabinet doors so I can store all my music inside. (I'm a piano/voice teacher and have been collecting music for years!) This might work...if I modified it a little bit? Hrm. I'll have to keep thinking. Thank you!!!!

melissa (not verified)

Fri, 12/10/2010 - 09:38

Are the plans for this one much shorter than the PB one? 27 3/4 inches just seems so short. Has anyone modified it to make it a bit taller?

Amanda (not verified)

Thu, 12/30/2010 - 08:15

I have been looking for more storage for my kitchen! This would be a great buffet and also be able to store my other cookware. I love Apothecary consoles :) Thank you so much for all you do! I LOVE your website and have passed it on to a bunch of my friends. After finishing up the "mom's train table" I will see about making this one. Thank you for your hard work and the inspiration. Never thought I would be able to make furniture :)

Stefanie (not verified)

Mon, 01/03/2011 - 04:21

Is there anyway to make this with just drawers like the first picture? I'm in love with these...but I don't need a media console, or something with shelves.

Stefanie (not verified)

Fri, 01/07/2011 - 16:32

I want it with the smaller drawers too. I'm surprised she hasn't made one yet. Ana, is one in works?

Ashlee (not verified)

Mon, 01/17/2011 - 07:29

I found you website yesterday!! I have already gone thru a majority of your blog and I am in LOVE!! There are so many great projects! This is going to be one of the projects I want to try and build, i'm so excited! Thanks so much for you wonderful blog : )

Angie Smith (not verified)

Mon, 01/17/2011 - 13:02

I absolutely adore this! Thank you so much for sharing your gorgeous work and idiot-proof plans! Any chance you have plans for matching apothecary end tables? I swear I came across some a while back, but can't seem to find them now.

lazerclaire (not verified)

Mon, 01/31/2011 - 07:04

I can see why people want the smaller drawers, its novel I think. But in my mind they don't even seem practical. Perhaps 2 tiny drawers would suit me.

Melissa (not verified)

Thu, 02/10/2011 - 14:02

I am excited to build this media table, but I want to adjust the height to make it 30 inches. How does that affect the other measurements? I'm not sure that I've come up with the correct adjustments.

Monica (not verified)

Sat, 02/19/2011 - 21:23

Hi, I love this apothecary cabinet, my husband will be building it soon. Can you tell me what color this is and where you got the paint for it? It's so beautiful! Thank you!


Wed, 03/09/2011 - 07:42

I love how you redesigned your new website Ana!!! The step by step feature is so awesome!! It should help me out tremendously when I get confused (which is quite often) Thank you so much for all you do!!

nichole (not verified)

Fri, 04/01/2011 - 10:39

I adore this console, and am looking forward to forcing my husband to help me build it...but where is step 7? Is there a link somewhere that I am not seeing?

BellaB (not verified)

Thu, 06/14/2012 - 21:00

Thank you, dan-k! I was freaking out that I couldn't find the rest of the steps. Thanks so much for the link!!!

Guest (not verified)

Mon, 04/18/2011 - 05:39

Help!  There isn't an active link to Part 2 of the plans!

HarrySeaward (not verified)

Sun, 05/15/2011 - 12:21


I set out to make this at DW's request but we wanted the 8 drawers and a few inches taller. With my tendency to over-engineer everything, I decided I wanted a solid wood top. DW and I settled on African Mahogany as a good mix of price and appearance. We purchased the lumber locally and had them end-glue the pieces together and plane it flat for us. Out the door, it was $100 or so, but we have a 20"x30" piece left over for another project.


For the added height, I simply extended the end pieces to 30" and used 4-1/2" footers instead of the 2" called for in Ana's plans. I added an extra footer to the rear of the cabinet and a cross piece in the middle of the bottom to help prevent sagging.

I don't like the way the ends of plywood look in finished projects so I used veneer tape (available at home depot) for the exposed ends of the plywood. You just use a regular clothes iron to secure it to the plywood. You'll need a router or small hand plane to flush-trim the edges but the end result looks so much better than the 'sandwich' plywood effect.

The last thing I did was on the drawers. I didn't see a way to easily add slides or hardware but I was worried about the drawer bottoms dragging on the shelves. I solved this problem in two ways. I have a router table so I used a 1/4" round-over bit on the inside and outside of the bottom edge of the drawer sides (but not the back or front). When I assembled the drawer boxes I raised the bottoms and back up about 1/16" with spacers so that the end result was the sides were 1/16" lower than the bottom and back so that the drawers ride on the sides only. The sides have less surface area, thus less drag. The second thing I did was apply some 1/2" wide adhesive teflon tape (Amazon.com, search "ptfe mouse tape") to the bottom of the edge that rides on the shelves. I don't have anything to compare to, but the drawers slide in and out very smoothly.


If I were to make another one, I think I would use 5/8" plywood for the drawers. 3/4" just seems too bulky.

Because of the hardwood top, this project cost us quite a bit more than if we had stayed with Ana's plans, but wow, this thing looks awesome in our bedroom.

Thanks for the inspiration, Ana!

Emma (not verified)

Fri, 05/20/2011 - 09:49

Hello Anna. My computer won't let me click on step seven is there a way you can e mail it to me? Thank you!

Guest (not verified)

Mon, 08/15/2011 - 16:14

You have posted plans for everything with the apothecary piece but it says "click here" for making the front of it and there is no link to do this. Can you assist?



Guest (not verified)

Sun, 02/19/2012 - 07:37

hey i really would like to build this but i cannot access part two of the building designs. can you please help me?!

Guest (not verified)

Thu, 03/01/2012 - 17:08

I've seen a lot of plans, including this one, where something *should* be linked; i.e., click here for step 7, or another project that said "click here for how to check for square", etc....but there is no link, and search doesn't bring anything up.

Honey (not verified)

Sun, 12/02/2012 - 14:29

My husband and I would like to build this, but Step 7 says: Drawers and Doors: Click here for Part 2. The link is not click-able, and the PDF version says the same thing, so I can't seem to figure out what the next step is! Can you help?

MarlaC (not verified)

Thu, 12/06/2012 - 06:00

I am looking for part 2 of these plans. The wedsite says "click here" for part 2, but has no link to click on.....help please...I LOVE this website. Have already made a doll bed for my grand daughter :-)