Advice and suggestions wanted for tricky space

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17 Mar 2018
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Sarf Landun
Hi, been a while since I posted, good to see so much activity on the forum.

I want to build a run of cabinets in my basement, but the space they're going into is quite irregular and I can't work out the best way to approach it.

The wall along which I want to install is like this:


At the base of the walls are concrete plinths(?), which have varying heights. I want the cabinets to go from on top of one raised section across to the other, with taller cabinets in the middle, lowered section to make for a consistent line across the top of the cabinets just beneath the windows.

Nothing lines up or is regular. The walls in fairness aren't too bad, but the windows aren't level to each other, the floor slopes down to the right, and the concrete sections aren't quite the same height, nor are level and have had the top boxed in with a layer of ply with a round-over on the edge which is not at all level nor protrudes quite the same amount between sections.

I pulled together some ideas in Sketchup involving 1x2 leveled plinths under 4 separate cabinets with filler strips between them, with overlay doors, but it felt a bit 'inelegant'.

What I'd really like to do is something a bit more like this in terms of style, with inset doors, and drawers making up the space in the lower section in the middle to make up the height, having everything lining up across the run:

Is that too much to ask given the irregularity of the space?
I made a longish run of built-in wardrobes across 2 alcoves and a chimney breast last year, but that was simpler - just a case of leveling the cabinets on a long plinth and adding filler strips either end and between the carcasses. With this basement one I'm not so sure.

Keen to hear any thoughts or suggestions from those with a bit more experience than me.
So, the exercise of writing that post out seems to have done the trick of getting the approach sorted in my head…

First, make and level plinths to the datum lines of the high points of the lower and higher sections, measure up to a laser line across the top where the continuous cabinet top edges will be, then build the cabinets with the outer frame for the inset look, the drawer boxes in the lower sections up to the datum line of the top of the plinth of the higher section. :unsure:

Left to my own devices I think that’s how I’d do it, but wondering if I’ve missed anything obvious?
I don't see anything wrong with your approach. However, assuming it was all like this when you moved in, I would suggest ripping off some of the ply 'boxing' to see if it is all necessary. Maybe some of the irregularities could be reduced or eliminated?? Also it would be good to check that there isn't pipes or cables that may need access in the future, before you make it more inaccessible.
First physical thing I would probably do is to tackle the irregularity of the windows. These are at your natural site line and your eye will go straight to them.
If you ran an oversize and totally flat architrave around the window, with the bottom piece being of a different depth to balance out the differences, this can then be lipped to form a surround for a roman blind that will run inside the surround, which is basically an L section.


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