As we begin our food storage we are all looking for places to put our food and supplies, we fill out closets, shelves and any nook and cranny we can find, Lisa even puts a few cans food behind the pots and pans, so why not hide it in plain sight?
It is not only important to have this stockpile of food and supplies ready if something were to happen that required us to use it, it is also important to not put all of our eggs in one basket and find new and different places to hide it.
If someone were to find out we had these supplies and decided to come take advantage of our preparedness or if the government decided to “confiscate” it for the greater good of the people forcing us to stand in line for our rations just like everyone else that would put us in the same position we are trying to avoid.
not only can we store food and supplies in different places like under our beds, in the garage and even behind the pots and pans we can also hide it in plain sight. And this is what I decided to do when Lisa asked me to build her a cabinet to go beneath the kitchen counter top.
How to Build a Counter Top Extension
Building a kitchen counter top extension doesn’t require you to be a master craftsman or wood worker. With the right tools you would be surprised how easily this can be done, and it also helps you learn a new skill that might be useful in a post collapse society.
There are some tools what will make this a whole lot easier, but if you don’t have a table saw or a nail gun all you need is…
- A hammer.
- A framing triangle.
- Finishing nails (at least 1″ long)
- A hand held circular saw (or an old fashioned wood saw)
- A sander or sand paper.
- And some wood filler or caulk.
- 1 X 2 trim (for supports and trim)
- 1 X 7 planks (your dimensions might be different)
- 1 large piece of plywood.
- Trim pieces that match your current counter’s trim.
Counter Top Extension Dimensions
The goal of the counter top extension is camouflage, we want it to look like it is a part of the existing counter top, that way is someone comes to take what you have they will hopefully look else where.
Measure the width (how far out the counter top extends over the existing counter) height (from the floor up) and length you want the cabinet.
You might notice that this shelf unit does not go all the way to the end of the counter top and is not flush with the counter top. This is because of the 45 degree angle on the corner where I plan on building a small angled shelf unit to fill this area in, and I also need to finish the base for this unit to connect to the floor.
Constructing the Shelf
- For the outside frame and shelves I used 1 X 7 planks, I used these because my counter top extends over the counter base 7 inches and I wanted to make it flush with the counter top, yours might be different.
- After you get the frame built you need to add your shelves. You can do this any way you want, but I did it this way because the two boards below the long shelf add support.
- For a little more added support you can nail in 1 X 2 supports on both sides of the the vertical dividers and under the main shelf.
- Finish the front face of the cabinet with 1 X 2 strips of wood. This part is a little tedious and requires accurate measurement, but the trim is what gives it that quality look.
- Fill in all of the gaps with wood filler, caulking or Spackle…just remember that it will need to be sanded and caulking can be a little tough to sand.
- After the wood filler has dried sand the entire shelf with 180 fine grit sand paper ( sandpaper comes in different grit levels, 60 is coarse and 180 is finishing level)
Build the Front Face
Now we need to make the front face of the shelf unit and makes it look like this shelf and the existing counter are one piece.
- Measure the finished dimensions of the shelf you just built, you will need to be as accurate as possible to create a seamless fit
- Once you cut the plywood (or whatever wood you use) trim around the outside of the ply wood with some trim that matches the trim on your current cabinets.
- You can glue the trim on the plywood, nail it on or do both like I did. But if you nail it on you will need to use a Dremel to file off the nails so they don’t stick out of the back side.
- Make sure all of the trim pieces fit together at 45 degrees, this can be a little tough without a miter box but you want it to match the current cabinet area as much as possible.
Connecting the Face to the Shelf
To connect the face to the shelf unit you can use magnets (like your current shelves) or even Velcro. I chose to use the magnets because I didn’t want the shelf to have Velcro all over it and look ugly when the face is off of it.
If you use 3 or 4 magnets in the right spots you should have no problem putting the face on and taking it off very easily.
Painting the Shelf to Match
Now that you have everything built you can paint the shelf to match the existing cabinets. Try to find the same type and color of paint that is on the existing cabinets. Black is not just Black, paint comes in flat, gloss, interior, exterior, semi gloss etc. so try to match it a close as possible…or you could just redo the entire kitchen while your at it. We were lucky enough to have some of the same paint leftover that we used for the kitchen.
Hide it in Plain Sight, Think outside the box
This is just one way I have thought about hiding food and supplies in plain sight, but this is just another example of thinking outside the box.
It was also mentioned in the private Facebook group that you could build a coffee table or end table the same way. I have also seen where you can take part of your floor and make a little hatch, put food below your floor and it is camouflaged to look like it’s just part of the floor…that’s a little trickier, and Lisa wouldn’t be too happy if I destroyed or floor, but who knows haha.