Pretty much the whole reason I DIY furniture is because I just can’t find exactly what I want at a price I’m willing to pay. Fine, call me cheap – I’m cool with that. Or call me super picky about what I want. I’m cool with that too. Whatever the reason, I just keep making my own stuff so I get what I really want. And that’s just what I did for our breakfast nook table. After searching around for the perfect breakfast table, I ended up doing an Ikea hack when I made my own DIY dining table from an Ikea desk top, a 4×4, and a few other scraps of wood.
The table needed to be narrow, rectangular, and have some sort of pedestal base so people could easily get in and out of our banquette. I also wanted a clean white table (well, clean before kid marker attacks) to make this bright spot in our house even brighter. So I decided to use the Linnmon table top from Ikea (this one, for $35.99) to create a whole new table. The size was perfect (approx. 30×60″) and I just needed legs. I first tried these trestle legs but it just wasn’t sturdy enough. Seriously, we tested it and it toppled in about 1.1 second. So now the trestle legs are just sitting in my basement waiting for a future project or for me to quit being lazy and just Craigslist them already. After ditching the trestles, I decided to make my own base. Here’s how I did it.
First, I went all two-tone on this project and attached stained wood trim underneath the table top with a nail gun, so the edge shows a band of white and a band of walnut underneath (walnut stain, not walnut wood).
Next, I built my base by cutting a 4×4 into equal lengths and with each cut on an 8 degree angle. I did a little test positioning (’cause that’s a thing) and decided to butt together two of the legs and have the other two just attach to those.
Then I put the base together with some wood glue (weighted down by books) and then wood screws, attaching it all to a piece of scrap plywood.
I attached the entire base to the top by screwing the plywood square into the underside of the table top. With a ton of screws – I’m pretty sure I went overboard on that. And the key here is to make sure your screws don’t go through the top. Then I stained the legs super dark brown. The “super dark” part might have been on accident – I probably should have tested the stain first.
I tested out the table and it was a little wobbly, so I added additional support for the base. I used two small pieces of scrap wood to put in between the legs, like this:
And that was it.
Once I had the idea down, the execution was pretty easy. The legs aren’t heavy enough to make the table extraordinarily sturdy (no sitting on this guy) but it is sturdy enough to handle daily meals by our family of four, homework sessions, and the occasional dinner party that just wants to get cozy at this little table instead of fancying it up at the real dining table. I think my favorite part might just be the walnut colored wood under the bright white table top – clearly I’m into wood and white furniture lately.
And here it is once we actually got chairs!
So anyone else too cheap and/or picky to buy a table so you built your own? Or get so antsy to finish a project you just skip test-staining your wood? Luckily, we’re pretty happy with how it turned out. 🙂