Step-by-step instruction for making your own coffee table

CLEVELAND - There's no need to spend a lot of money on a beautiful, solid coffee table when you can just build your own! All you need are just a few pieces of wood and some sweat equity.

Step by Step for Coffee Table

Materials Needed: (2) 2x4's at 8 feet long, (4) 2x2's at 8 feet long, (1) 1x12 at 8 feet long, (5) 2x6's at 8 feet long, chop/miter saw, preferred stain, drill, sanding pad, paper towels, measuring tape


1. Using the chop saw, cut the 2x4's to the desired length for the legs of the table. To give you an idea, finished coffee tables have a height of 16-18 inches. Determine the desired length of the table and cut four 2x2's to that length for the apron or side trim. We definitely recommend drilling pilot holes first to prevent the wood from splitting. Create two rectangles by screwing the apron or side trim to the legs a few inches from the bottom of the leg. Attach the top apron to the legs flush with the top of each leg. You'll have two separate rectangles at this point.


2. Attach the two rectangle forms to each other with four cross pieces cut from the 2x4's at 22.5 inches long. Scew them in at the same height as the aprons you previously attached.


3. To create the lower shelf, cut the 1x12 into two planks that run the length of the coffee table (same length as the aprons) and screw them into the apron all the way around.


4. Now it's time for the "X' detail  that sets this piece apart! Cut the 2x2 down into two pieces that span from the top left corner of the piece to the bottom right corner (for ours, we measured 22.5 inches) and miter the ends at a 60 degree angle. Screw into place. Now cut the remaining 2x2 into four pieces at half the length of the pieces you just cut (for ours, it was 11.25 inches) and again, miter the ends at a 60 degree angle. Screw into place to form the "X' shape on either end. 


5. Build the top of the coffee table by cutting the 2x6 into five planks cut slightly longer than the  length of your table, so that you have a nice overhang. Screw into the side apron all the way around.


6. Brush on your desired stain with a paint brush, and wipe off with a paper towel in the direction of the wood grain. Let dry completely and finish with a coat of matte water-based polyurethane.


For less than $100, you have a sturdy, stylish coffee table that people will think you spent the big bucks for!"