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Custom Office Desk Bases with Quartz Top

Our office area is adjacent to the kitchen, so I wanted the cabinetry and countertops to match the kitchen. 

Here is a video of me building these office desk bases-


I built the two bases exactly the same size, but customized the interiors for different uses.  On the left, the base has a pull out printer shelf and a large bottom shelf for extra storage.  On the right is a row of drawers and then a cabinet hiding the wastebasket.  You could also put a CPU in there.

This is the design configuration for the printer side.  For the drawers/wastebasket side, I did have a divider in the center (two bays), but only one shelf in each bay. The tops are open, just bay supports under the countertops. I order through Shelf Help.

The plywood panels for the desk arrived about a week later in the mail.  I didn't have to go buy the plywood, haul it, cut it, and then deal with (and pay for) scraps I didn't need.

shelf help order in package

The front edges of the plywood panels are also edge banded, so no need to finish them!

shelf help front edge banding

shelf help building

Instead of a full plywood top or back, I used 1x3 furring strips to tie the sides in.  This saves weight, cost, and bulk in the project.

shelf help building step 2

 Once the carcass is done, it's easy to customize to suit your needs.  Since you are working with a square project, you can just measure as you go - no need for a detailed plan.For the desk base on the right, I added three drawers and a cabinet door.

adding drawers to a built in desk

roll out printer shelf

The finish on the desk is primer and white semi-gloss paint from Sherwin Williams (color is Extra White).  The countertop is quartz, the color is Rococo.  The quartz countertop is just sitting on the desk bases.  It is very heavy, so glad the desk bases are well made with 3/4" thick plywood!

Here's how I changed it up for the printer pull out:

Doors/Drawer Faces

I built the door and the door faces are just slabs of poplar.  There's a 1/4" gap in between all the doors/drawers, and a 1/2" gap on top of the door/drawer. 

I used a full overlay euro concealed hinge for frameless cabinets for the hinge - this is a standard hinge that is available everywhere.

I used 22" drawer slides for both the printer slide out and all the drawers, the bottom corner mount white ones.  They are very easy to install and very forgiving.


I like enclosed bases because it is easier to clean around, and I like the taller baseboard because it elevates that lowest shelf up off the ground - but this does take up storage space, so if storage space is important, maybe go with a 3-1/4" or 4-1/4" baseboard.  I used 5-1/4" baseboard, with the shelf height at 6" to the top, so the 5-1/4" comes to the bottom of the shelf. There's also a 1x6 directly behind the baseboard on the front, this brings the baseboard out 3/4" to match the doors/drawer faces being out 3/4" from the front edge of the carcass.


The quartz countertop just sits on top.  The bases are plenty strong enough to support - I used alot of bay supports to make sure they were solid and could hold a 300+ pound countertop!

Template Available

The template for this desk base is here.