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How to: Make a craftsman-inspired table

How to: Make a craftsman-inspired table

Dining Table 3.jpg

Dan and I wanted a rustic, hearty table that seats six to go in our newly designated dining room. We were about to order a gorgeous one from Etsy, but Dan came home from work one day determined to make it himself. So we did. The final size of the table is 54”x36” and 30” tall.

Dan’s “ingredients list”:

Disclaimer: this is not a sponsored post - I included the brand names of the ingredients below to help you get the same results.

  • 5- 1”x8”x6’ pine boards (these will make up your table top)
  • 3- 1”x4”x6’ pine boards (these will make up your table skirt)
  • 1- 4”x4”x10’ Douglas fir boards (this will make up your table legs – we had the experts at Menard’s cut it into four equal pieces; also, if you don’t want to paint the legs white, we recommend white wood to stain - the stain on fir came out really dark)
  • Minwax Wood Finish in Early American
  • Minwax Polycrylic in Clear Semi-Gloss
  • Dutch Boy Platinum in Ultra White Semi-Gloss (paint and primer in one)
  • Hot-dipped galvanized box nails (both 1 ¼” and 1 ½” in length)

Cut it:

8” pine boards into the following pieces: 4 at 27”; 3 at 13.5; 3 at 40”
4” pine boards into the following pieces: 2 at 54” and 2 at 34 ½”

Assemble it: 

First of all, I apologize but we built the table in the evening and thus don’t have pictures of the process due to poor lighting.

  1. Lay the 8” boards prettiest sides down (I like a lot of character and knots exposed) to stagger the seams.
  2. Lay the leftover pieces from the 4” pine boards across the seams (you will need three cross boards of 34 ½”).
  3. Using the 1 ¼” nails, attach the crossbeams to the tabletop boards.
  4. Flip the structure over and reinforce the seams by hammering three 1 ¼” nails on either side of the short seams into the crossbeams.
  5. We then balanced the top on the 4” boards that will serve as the table skirt and nailed down into them. With our lack of tools, this was the best way we had to make sure it was square and flush. Dan also nailed the corners of the skirt together.
  6. After the tabletop was assembled, we awkwardly balanced it on top of the four legs and I held on to each leg from underneath while Dan nailed the table together. (We never said we were experts.) In order to get the right look, Dan nailed the top onto the legs through the skirt and not the top.
Dining Room 2.jpg

Finish it:

  1. Tape off the legs underneath the tabletop.
  2. Apply one coat of stain. Let it dry for 24 hours. Apply a second coat of stain. Let it dry for 24 hours. Lightly sand it.
  3. Apply one coat of poly. Let it dry for 3 hours. Apply a second coat of poly. Let it dry overnight. Lightly sand the tabletop. Wipe clean (I used a tack cloth) and apply a third coat. Let it dry for a day.
  4. Tape off the tabletop from the legs.
  5. Apply one coat of white paint. Let it dry overnight. Apply a second coat of paint.
Dining Table 4.jpg

And you’re done! Like I said, we’re not construction experts, but the table is super stable and just beautiful. Don’t you think?

Total aside: Community is DEFINITELY our new favorite TV show. It makes me laugh out loud every episode. If you haven’t already, check it out. Look up episode 505 - “Geothermal Escapism.” You can thank me later.

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