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When we moved into our house I was dying to build a farmhouse kitchen table!! I had a ton of ideas saved on Pinterest and I was super excited to get started on our custom made table. Then as I started really reading all of my material, I realized I didn’t have any actual plans!! I had a lot of pictures and a lot of tips…but zero plans!! I was even willing to buy plans online but I couldn’t find any that fit what I wanted. So I did some reading, half-way created some plans myself, and then told Neil we were ready!! I knew some of my calculations would have to be done on the spot…which got a little awkward when Neil would ask for the next cut and I didn’t have an answer yet. He quickly figured out I was kind of winging this whole project…but no stress…I’m semi-decent at math!!
So after all of our hard work I wanted to share our designs with everyone because I know how hard it can be to find plans online!! Also…just as an FYI…this is the first piece of furniture we’ve built from scratch. So it’s a pretty basic design and a great project for beginners!!
- Wood Planer (optional: A wood planer ensures that the wood is all the same thickness)
- Table Saw (optional)
- Router (optional)
- Miter Saw
- Kreg Jig
- Brad Nailer
- Electric Sander
- Tape Measure
- Wood Clamps
- Wood Glue
- Wood Filler
- Sand Paper (Course and Very Fine)
- Tack Cloth
- Table Top Fasteners
- Forstner Bit
- 2-1/2 inch Kreg Pocket Screws
- 2-1/2 inch Wood Screws
- 4 inch Wood Screws
- 1-1/4 inch Brad Nails
- Stain (we prefer MinWax Special Walnut)
- Semi-Gloss Polycrylic Top Coat
- Staining Pad
- Kilz Original Primer
- Behr Urethane Alkyd Semi-Gloss Enamel Paint
- Paint Brushes
- We planed our lumber first because our planer will sometimes leave little indentations at the ends. So we plane and then as we’re cutting our lumber we try to cut the ends off (if possible).
- Using our miter saw, we cut the 2x12x16′ for our table top. We cut 3 pieces that were 5 feet each (our table is 5 feet long and it comfortably sits 4-6 people).
- Using our miter saw, we cut 4 pieces of 3.5 inch (each) off the 1x3x8′
- Using our miter saw, we then cut the 2x4x96 studs to the following measurements:
STEP THREE: ASSEMBLE TABLE TOP
- We did a pretty basic assembly, but if we were going to do it again we’d make some improvements to the table top. We’d start by using a table saw to edge joint the wood. Edge jointing is the process of making the edge of a wooden board straight in preparation for jointing two pieces of wood together. You can use a jointer or you can use a table saw to edge joint. Check out this table top tutorial here.
- We used the Kreg Jig to drill pocket holes and assembled the top using 2-1/2 inch pocket screws. If you’re new to the Kreg Jig check out this helpful tutorial here.
- Then we sanded the edges of the table top so that if someone bumped into the table it wouldn’t hurt them. If you have a router, then I’d recommend using a router to smooth the edges of the table (otherwise an electric sander will be fine).
- Another improvement to the table top that we’d suggest is using wood filler to fill in the gaps between the wood (or any other crevices/holes). We skipped this step and we have a ton of crumbs stuck in the crevices of our table top…don’t skip this step!
- We attached two of the 2x4x25.5 using 2-1/2 inch wood screws. We used a wood clamp to hold the pieces together while drilling; it makes it easier and less likely for the wood to move around. Once they’re attached, we cut the edges at a 45 degree angle. This is the bottom of one of the table legs. Repeat this step for the other leg.
- We cut one 2x4x25.5 at a 45 degree angle on both edges and attached it to another piece of 2x4x25.5 using 2-1/2 inch wood screws. This is the top of one of the legs. Repeat this step for the other leg.
- Here’s a good picture of what the side of your table will look like once it’s all assembled:
- Next, we used a wood clamp to clamp together the 2x4x20.75, the 2x4x8-5/8, and the other 2x4x20.75. We used 2-1/2 inch wood screws (blue arrows in photo below) to attach these pieces together. Then we used 4 inch screws (red arrows in photo below) to attach the tops and bottoms of the legs. Repeat this step for the other leg as well.
- It’s pretty easy to cut a 30 degree angle on a miter saw, but what about a 60 degree angle? We’d never cut a 60 degree angle on our miter saw before, but thank goodness for YouTube! Here’s a helpful tutorial on how to make those 60 degree cuts for your legs.
- We cut all of our 2x4x12 pieces with a 30 degree angle on one side and a 60 degree angle on the other side. Be careful not to chop off too much from the length (the length needs to be 12 inches still).
- We didn’t attach these to the legs yet, but we made sure it would work/fit before moving on to the next step.
- We used wood filler to cover all of our screws/holes in the legs.
- Once our wood filler was dry, we sanded over every piece of wood with a fine grit sandpaper and our electric sander. EVERY PIECE OF WOOD!
- We cleaned the wood with tack cloth to remove all of the sawdust and to prep for painting.
- We stained our table top with Minwax Special Walnut. For this project we used a staining pad to apply the stain…talk about a game changer! In the past we’ve stained using cloth, brushes, foam brushes, etc…the staining pad is definitely the best way to apply stain! We waited several hours and then wiped off the excess stain that didn’t get soaked into the wood. We repeated this process until we had our desired color for the table top. We then lightly (LIGHTLY) sanded the top by hand, cleaned it with tack cloth again, and added about four/five coats of polycrylic top coat. I read a post between professional woodworkers that compared top coats and they all recommended General Finishes over Minwax…but honestly I can’t tell a big difference. We lightly sanded after every 2-3 coats of topcoat. We wanted our tabletop to be super smooth!
- We decided to paint all of the remaining pieces white. Our floors are wood and we wanted a nice contrast against the wood floors. We used Kilz Original Primer to prep the wood before painting. We then painted the leg pieces with Behr Urethane Alkyd Semi-Gloss Enamel. We were hesitant to use the alkyd paint because we haven’t read many reviews where people used it on furniture. It’s harder to work with but it’s more durable than regular latex paint….so we decided to give it a shot. Six months later and we’re still loving it!! There’s not a single chip in the paint…it’s super durable!! We did a good job sanding in between coats and probably put a total of 3-4 coats of alkyd on the legs and center beam. No top coat needed for alkyd paints…so after your 3-4 coats you’re done.
- So you might be wondering why we painted everything before we finished assembling the table? Well it’s much easier to paint when it’s in parts and the paint job will look a lot better! Less brush strokes, less drips, and just a better look overall!
- We attached the center beam using 2-1/2 inch wood screws. We made sure everything was centered before screwing it all together.
- We attached the remaining pieces with 4 inch screws (red arrows in the photo below) and our brad nail gun (purple arrows in photo below). We did some touch up paint over the brad nails.
- To finish, we attached the legs to the table top using table top fasteners and a forstner bit on our drill. Here’s a great tutorial on attaching Figure 8 Table Top Fasteners. Make sure everything is centered and spaced appropriately before attaching….and you’re done!!
I hope you found this tutorial helpful and if you have any questions feel free to reach out!!