Sunday, October 20, 2013

Rustic Furniture: End Table

With my Rustic Coffee Table build coming along nicely (seen here), I decided that I needed to make the rest of my living room furniture match.  

So my next project will be to make an end table that matches my new coffee table, and replace the old one I have that sits in between my two recliners.

Ana White has a matching end table on her blog (seen here).  Like the coffee table, I will base my end table on her designs, with a few small changes.  Mainly the cross beams will be 2-criss-crossed pieces of wood instead of one X shaped piece of wood.  The size will also be altered slightly to fit the space needed.  I drew up my design in SketchUp. 

And then made out a lumber list...

...and went to the hardware store and had the lumber cut to size.

Making this end table will be just like making the coffee table.  First I started by drilling pocket holes for the table top, and assembling it with pocket screws.

Then I assembled the frame, again using pocket holes and screws.

On my coffee table, I used 2 pieces of whitewood to form the bottom shelf.  Luckily for that project, the 2 pieces screwed together made a perfect fit for the shelf in the frame.  The same will not be true for this project.  So instead of whitewood planks, I cut down one sheet of 3/4" thick plywood to form the bottom shelf.  I also had trouble putting in the shelf on the coffee table because the frame was already assembled at the time.  This time I only assembled one half of the frame and then added the bottom shelf before completing the frame.

I placed the table top onto the frame to get an idea of how it will look when done.

And it's looking good so far!  Next I placed the frame upside-down on the table top and centered it.

I drew in where the frame connects to the top, and then made markings for where the screw holes will be drilled.

I then clamped the frame to the top to keep everything in place while I drilled.

After all the holes were drilled I used my countersink drill bit to deepen and widen the drill holes.  This will make the screws sit slightly below the surface of the table, allowing them to be covered with wood filler.

Once the holes were widened, I screwed the top to the frame.

Next I began filling in the countersink holes, and other imperfections on the table top with wood filler.

While that dried I put the end table on it's side and began working on the cross beams.  I laid one beam down diagonally and traced the corner cuts with a pencil.  I marked each piece of wood and it's corners so that I know which board goes where it's supposed to.

Once the tracings were done I began cutting the wood.

When all the wood was cut I fitted them into the frame to make sure they fit correctly.  I did not glue them in at this time.

Then I used my block plane to level out one or two spots where two boards connected that were not too even.

Then it was time to sand!  I gave the whole thing a rigorous sanding using my belt sander, mouse sander and sand paper.  A few areas needed some additional filler.

While the filler dried, I glued on the side criss-cross beams.

Then I gave the entire end table a good sanding, followed by a good cleaning.

I then placed the end table in between my recliners and loved how it looked!

At this point both the end table and coffee table await staining, but both are quite pleasing additions to the living room.

When a nice day finally arrived I brought the end table outside.  I stood it upside down on a table to make it easier to apply the stain.

The stain I decided to use was a stain plus polyurethane in one, so I didn't have to worry about wiping away excess stain with rags, or applying the polyurethane later.  I really love how the color looks!

When it dried I flipped it over...

...put it back on the table...

and stained the rest.

Below the end table dries, while a partially stained coffee table also dries.

When all was dried I gave a second coat to the table top.

And let dry again.

Once the end table was dry I brought it inside.  I placed pieces of cardboard underneath the legs to protect the carpet in case there was still some wet stain still left over.

The next day I screwed on decorative hinges onto the corners of the table top.

And I screwed a hole for some decorative bolts on the sides....

...which I ratcheted in.

This guy is almost done.  Next up is sanding.

I started off with some steel wool.

This softened the surfaces.

Then I switched to medium and fine sandpaper to roughen up the look.

Then I gave the whole table a good cleaning.

And put it back in place.

I added on some decor and I'm done!

This beautiful end table matches my beautiful coffee table.

Now that I have an End table and Coffee table I might have to redo my other livingroom furniture to match....

Thanks for reading!!


  1. Another brilliant tutorial! Your builds are getting better and better - love the step-by-step photos that describe everything so well. I guess it's a bit more expensive getting the timber cut at the store, but it certainly results in a great project with zero waste.

  2. Hey Phil. Thanks again for your comments. It actually doesn't cost anything extra having the timber cut at the store. I've been told that after a certain amount of cuts, they will charge a little for the service, but I've been there so many times and built up a rapport with the Man who does the cutting. So he doesn't charge me the extra fee.