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Share to PinterestHow to Build a Custom DIY Sofa Table

How to Build a Custom DIY Sofa Table

By Staff Writer
Share to PinterestHow to Build a Custom DIY Sofa Table

A good sofa table or console table compliments your seating area with functionality, but a great one does it with style. This DIY sofa table is the latter, transforming your living room on a budget.

Maximize space with a narrow sofa table between your couch and the wall. Paint your finished console white and display a vibrant collection of houseplants behind your sectional. Whatever your design goals are, here's how to build the perfect customizable sofa table to complement your space.


Measure up the right spot

Share to Pinterestperson measuring the back of his sofa with a measuring tape

Before getting started, consider where your sofa table will go and how you plan to use it. Next, measure the height and length of your sofa. The table should be the same height as the back of the couch or shorter.

While most consoles have at least six inches of space on each side, yours can run the sofa's length to maximize storage. Depending on its location, the tabletop can measure from 6 to 15-inches wide.


Make your design choices

Share to Pinterestwood color swatches

Now that you have your measurements, it's time to decide on the style of your custom table. Did you score a few lengths of reclaimed wood? Try creating a rustic design with warm, natural wood tones and metal corner guards.

Are you interested in a contemporary, streamlined silhouette? Use pocket holes to hide hardware, and brush a dark wood stain over your design. If there's a need to incorporate storage, add a glass shelf or woven baskets. The possible combinations of materials and textures are endless.


Assemble the proper tools

Share to Pinterestman in workshop measuring a length of wood

Building this DIY sofa table requires basic tools like a tape measure, a hand or miter saw, clamps, a drill, a palm sander, and a level. You'll also need the lumber, which some hardware stores can cut for you for a nominal fee.

Other materials include wood screws, sandpaper, wood putty, wood glue, wood stain, and a sealant. If you want to hide your hardware, get a pocket hole jig and some 3/8" wood dowels.


Cut your lumber to size.

Share to Pinterestsmiling woman in workshop cutting wood

Here's the lumber required for this narrow table design: eight 2"x2" furring strips and one 2"x6" stud cut to the length of the table. If you want more surface area, you can opt for a 2"x8", a 2"x10", or a 2"x12" piece of wood.

You'll also need six furring strips cut to the height of the table; these will be the legs. Six pieces cut to the width of your tabletop will provide support as the stretchers. Finally, cut four furring strips to the length of the table, then divide them in half to create eight equal-length rails.


Start with the legs

Share to Pinterestassembling the support of a wooden table

  1. Begin by gathering two leg pieces and two short stretcher pieces. Form a rectangle by arranging the shorter pieces inside the longer strips, like rungs on a ladder.
  2. Next, drill a pilot hole through both ends of each leg piece and smear wood glue on the outer end of each stretcher.
  3. Attach the legs to the stretchers with wood screws to form a rectangle, like a picture frame. For a cleaner look, cut the wood with a miter saw and drill pocket holes.
  4. Repeat the process until you have three identical rectangular legs.


Create a support system

Share to Pinterestbuilding the base of a console table

Build the structure of your table by connecting the legs to the side rails.

  1. Start by drilling two pilot holes through each corner of the rectangular frames, a total of 24 holes.
  2. Next, attach one side rail to each bottom corner of a leg, using a smear of wood glue and two 3" wood screws to secure each joint.
  3. Attach the second leg to the opposite ends of the side rails so that both legs stand upright.
  4. Repeat the process until all three legs stand up, with four side rails supporting the structure.


Work on the flipside

Share to Pinterestman using an electric drill on table legs

Carefully flip the table upside down to connect the remaining four stretchers to the opposite ends of each leg. Use clamps to steady the structure as you work, and don't forget to wipe any excess wood glue that squeezes out from the joints as you tighten the screws.

Your table should resemble a hollow rectangular box with support rails in the center. Allow the wood glue to dry completely before moving on to the next step.


Give the surface some attention

Share to Pinterestperson oiling the surface of a wooden table top

Your design aesthetic will lead the way on this next vital step: prepping the table's surface.

  1. First, sand the tabletop and the lower structure. Even if you're keeping the natural wood tones or going for a rustic motif, you'll need a smooth surface for even coverage of wood stain and sealer.
  2. Fill your pilot or pocket holes with wood dowels or wood putty, and seal any gaps in the joints with more putty.
  3. Sand everything to a smooth surface.


Add your personal touches

Don't forget those personal touches that add function to your space while updating your decor.

Need more storage? Use the bottom rails as the base for a low shelf or a platform for oversized baskets. Is your sofa blocking a power outlet on the wall? Cut an opening in the tabletop and affix a USB port underneath for each access.


Finish with a fresh coat

Share to Pinterestwoman staining a table top outside

  1. Apply wood stain to your table frame and tabletop—including the underside—with a microfiber cloth, wiping away excess to ensure even coverage.
  2. Finish with a coat of wood sealer or varnish, and allow everything to dry before continuing.
  3. Smear glue on the top-facing sides of the rails and legs, then press the tabletop onto the console, securing it with clamps. Drill two pilot holes through the underside of each rail and use eight 3" wood screws to fasten the tabletop to the console.

Your DIY sofa table is ready for use! Check you out!



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