Wednesday, April 24, 2013

diy - make your own side table

Last weekend I made a simple side table for my kitchen.  It was super easy and I love it.  It's sleek and functional and since I made it, it is exactly the right size.

My first idea for this space was a single tiered table with tapered legs.  My friend Liz posted about these tapered legs on Facebook and my mind immediately began churning with ideas. 

I was all set to make a basic table {top and four legs} until I realized that the tapered table legs on this site were max 28" high.  Since the table is in my kitchen, I wanted it to be counter height, which is typically about 36" high.

I looked around online for 34-36" tapered legs {or something similar} but an affordable version does not exist.  I was about to admit defeat until I got the idea to make the table two tiered.  It's perfect because I was able to achieve the correct height {and still not spend a lot of money} and I have a little shelf for storage.  I.Love.Storage.

Here is what I did to make my little table.  Trust me, very little wood working skills are required.  All you need is a drill and some patience. And maybe a dremel or a little saw.

-8 table legs and 8 brackets for attaching the legs.  Make sure you buy the brackets that are meant for these legs.  They can be found at Lowe's, Home Depot, etc, or online.  I used four 28" round tapered legs and four 8" round tapered legs***

-two wood boards - to fit the spot in my kitchen, I needed boards sized 36"x16".  I figured I would have to get a larger piece of wood cut to size at Lowe's but they actually sell wood boards meant for shelves and they had 36"x16" wood shelves.  Perfect!

-wood stain - I used Rust-Oleum in sunbleached {I love this stain and also used it for my dining room table}

-sand paper {the edges of the boards might need a little buffing}


***Note about the second, shorter set of could easily substitute four small pieces of wood in a square or cylinder shape.  They sell long pieces at Home Depot or Lowe's and they will cut them to any size for you.  I will explain below but this is likely an easier option than the four short legs.

Step One
Stain or paint the legs and the boards.  Allow to dry {I left them overnight}.

Step Two
Take the board that will be the table top and attach four brackets to the underside of the board {one in each corner}.

Step Three
In order to attach the short legs to the bottom wood board, I had to remove the metal feet and then saw down the legs. Removing the metal feet is a total pain, which is why I recommend buying a cylinder or rectangle piece of wood and having it cut into four equal lengths.  

If you decide to use the shorter legs, pry off the metal feet and cut off the wood that remains.  I used my dremel tool to saw off the little stub of wood that remains once the metal feet are removed.

Step Four
Take your table top {the one with the four brackets screwed into it} and flip it over so that you are looking at the brackets.  Take each leg short leg and screw it in place.  

If you opt to use basic pieces of wood, rather than the short legs, I suggest using wood glue and small brackets to hold the pieces in place.

Step Five
Take the second board {the one that will serve as the "shelf}, flip it over and place it on the bottom of the small feet.  Make sure it is lined up correctly and screw in medium length crews through the bottom of the board and into the bottom of the short table legs}.

Step Six
Finally, attach the remaining four table leg brackets to the bottom of the lower board {the one that is now screwed into the smaller legs} and screw in the long table legs.  

Flip over and you have a table!

I got really engrossed in what I was doing and forgot to take any in-progress photos.  I feel like I need to make Ikea-like instruction drawings for you guys!  If you plan on making something similar and have any questions, feel free to leave them in the comments :).

I still need to get a few bins for the small shelf.  I want something in a different color than gray.  I bought these two boxes at an antique store on Saturday.  I love them, but for this shelf I ned something functional.  I am keeping my eyes peeled for something that will hold stuff.  I feel like I spend half my buying time purchasing items to hold other items.

This project cost me about $70 {I already had sand paper, wood stain, and screws}.  It definitely wasn't the least expensive project I have ever tackled, but considering the result, I think $70 was a pretty good deal.

Have you ever done a wood working project?  This is the first thing I made from "scratch"{meaning not a furniture makeover} and it was so fun!  My husband wants me to make a coffee table next and I am already dreaming up ideas.....


  1. well done you, it's brilliant, i want one!!

  2. I love that there is two pieces to this table! Perfect little nook for storage. xx. McKenna Lou

  3. It turned out great! I love the 2-tier idea. I may have to make something similar...

  4. I've never done a wood working project before, but this is awesome!

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  6. This looks so good!! I'm a sucker for nice looking Designer wood Dining Tables . I hope to get a table much like yours.

  7. Good idea and simple to create your own side table. Maybe, we'll gain more inspiration for such furniture.

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