How & Why I Made A Custom Console Table

I normally start off my DIY posts with a story but today I’m just gonna dive right in & tell you why I made this custom console table.

Our entryway is not a “proper” entry. Meaning there is nothing making it standalone as an entryway, per se. As a matter of fact, there’s only 1 true wall in the entryway.

Also, we don’t use the front door very often so we don’t need a “drop zone” in this area.

BUT… when things starting shifting around here because of COVID, we sacrificed an entry table to create office space for everyone since we’re all working from home & virtual schooling.

Honestly I didn’t think I’d miss it. Until I did.

I made that table too & it was perfect in the entry because it could also be used for extra serving space for the dining room. But I was pretty sure I didn’t have the materials to make another since I used reclaimed wood from our deck.

I knew I wanted something super slim to fit snugly along this long wall at the same depth of the pseudo column, and long enough to have some presence to it.

Soooo on the hunt I went. Thrifting, searching all the online shops, looking for DIY plans on Pinterest.

Thrifting turned up nothing. I found a couple of options online, but 1 was way too dainty. Very pretty though.

And the others cost WAY more than I wanted to spend.

Pinterest is amazing BUT… all the plans I found out there were either not sturdy enough to stand on their own (but great between a wall & a sofa that would support it) or too big & bulky.

I loved the base of the first option we tried (shown above) – the matte gold was really pretty the legs were just the right amount of modern. So I decided to take matters into my own hands & come up with something of a hybrid.

Custom Console Table

Make a Custom Console Table

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Active Time: 4 hours
Total Time: 4 hours 5 minutes
Estimated Cost: $30

Custom console table made to in a specific space. Measurements can be adjusted for any space as needed.

Materials

  • 1 - 1 x 8 x 8
  • 1 - 1 x 4 x 8
  • 1 - 2 x 2 x 8 furring strips
  • 1 - 1 x 6 x 8
  • 6 - corner braces, 1" or longer
  • #6 wood screws - at least 2" long
  • ¾ screws
  • Wood glue (optional)

Tools

  • Saw - miter, table or circular saw will work (if you don't have one the hardware store will make these simple cuts for you)
  • Drill & drill bits
  • Screwdriver
  • Level
  • Sander & sandpaper (80 & 120 grit - 220 grit is optional)
  • Pencil
  • Paint
  • Tile (optional)

Instructions

  1. Cut the 2 x 2 & 1 x 4 wood pieces to 30". You will need a total of 4 1 x 4's @ 30"H and 2 2 x 2's @ 30"H
  2. Lay the 1 x 8 on a flat surface (this is the top).
  3. Measure out the placement of the 1 x 4's on each end of the 1 x 8 (these are the legs). I wanted a bit of a modern look (as opposed to a plank look that's more farmhouse) so I kept a small space between the legs.
  4. Mark the placement of the screw holes on each piece of wood. I marked & numbered mine to be extra safe (because I can be pretty forgetful these days). Drill a pilot hole in each of the place you marked.
  5. Mark the INSIDE edge of the 1 x 4 legs - this is important for the next step.
  6. Measure the distance between the inside edges of the 4 x 4 legs (end to end on the 1 x 8). Repeat steps 3 & 4 with the 2 x 2's (these will be the center legs).
  7. Using the 2" screws, attach each of the end legs - the 1 x 4's - to the to the top (the 1 x 8).
  8. Measure out where you want the bottom shelf. Mine is 9 ½" from the bottom. This dos NOT factor into any other measurement so it can be wherever you want it.
  9. Using the short screws, attach the corner brackets to the inside center of the 4 end legs (the 1 x 4's), 4 brackets total.
  10. Put the 1 x 6 on top of the brackets with 1 edge flush with the back edge of the legs & attach each bracket to the BOTTOM side of the shelf. This will be the BACK of the table.
  11. With the table standing right side up, place a 2 x 2 in the spot you marked in step 6 - in FRONT of the 1 x 6 shelf - and attach it to the top with a 2" wood screw.
  12. Lay the table on it's front - the long side with the 2 x 2 attached. Attach the shelf to the 2 x 2 the same as you did the 1 x 4x's in step 10.


NOW THIS IS WHERE I MADE A PRETTY BIG MISTAKE. SCRATCH THAT - IT WAS A MISCALCULATION.

When you buy dimensional lumber, the actual dimensions are a smidge off. Typically the width of the boards are about 1/2" smaller than described. So a 1 x 6 (which I am using for my bottom shelf) board is actually 1 x 5 ½.

When I planned out the table I was so happy to not have to rip a 8' board. Or so I though! My shelf was supposed to sit right in the middle of the 2 x 2 legs & if I wanted that I'd need a 1 x 4 not the 1 x 6 that I got.

DOH!!

No matter! This tuned out much better AND a 4" shelf would not have been substantial enough for the space or for styling or storage.

So there ya go... mistakes DO happen. This is real life. The solution was...

  1. The 2 x 2 that you DID NOT attach in step 11 above now needs to be cut at exactly the height you chose for the bottom shelf (9 ½" in my case). Mark & drill pilot holes into the middle of the longer piece on each end.
  2. With table standing right side up, wedge the longer piece of that 2 x 2 between the top (the 1 x 8) & the shelf (the 1 x 6). Attach it to the top from above using a 2" wood screw.
  3. Flip the table over & attach the other end of that 2 x 2 to the shelf from the bottom using a 2" wood screw. This is the top back leg.
  4. Using the short screws, attach 1 side of a corner bracket to the side of the short 2 x 2. This will be the bottom back leg.


The structural part of your table is done! It should be stable on a flat surface and completely level. (I made the mistake of thinking mine wasn't level because our floors have a little texture. Once I took it into the garage to paint I realized it was perfectly level.)


Finishing off


Sand your new table with 80 grit paper to smooth it out.

Follow with 120 grit & wipe it down well with a clean dry cloth or "sweep" with a paintbrush. A 220 grit sanding is optional - remember that some imperfections in the wood add character & shows that this is not a mass produced piece.

I knew that I would add this gorgeous Italian tile to the top of my table so I didn't bother with sanding it. If you do the same, just make sure it's clean.

I attached the tile with construction adhesive applied to the back & laid it in place. This unique tile adds beauty and some heft to the table.

The original plan was to finish off the edges of the top with a piece of finishing trim but we decided we like the look of tile edges. So I painted them the same color as the rest of the table & we LOVE the faceted look it has.

Overall this table turned out perfect for our space - the size, the style, the color... it's all just perfect! And that's the great thing about it... you make make this custom console table to your exact needs & specifications!


Notes

If you don't have a saw, most hardware stores will make simple cuts for you. Just make sure you have the exact measurements you need when you ask.

The longer the screws the better. 2-3 inches is optimal for strength & sturdiness.

Predrilling holes is NOT optional. This table is very low profile & I used 1" lumber to achieve that look. Without predrilling, the wood WILL crack & split AND it will be much more difficult to screw the pieces together.

Use your level at every step of the way to make sure the table is structurally intact & level. It's best to do this on a floor that's also level. The floor we're using this on has texture so it's not perfectly level. I kept thinking the table was off but it was the floor the whole time!

I personally prefer to spray paint furniture because it provides a much smoother finish with less work & often fewer coats than hand painting. I used Krylon Metallic gold because I really like the matte gold look.

I knew that I would add this gorgeous Italian tile to the top of my table so I didn’t bother with sanding or painting it. If you do the same, just make sure it’s clean.

I cut the backing off the tile with scissors and a utility knife. I attached it with construction adhesive applied to the back & laid it in place.

Attaching the tile

This unique tile adds beauty and some heft to the table. It’s definitely too long & heavy for me to move by myself now.

The original plan was to finish off the edges of the top with a piece of finishing trim but we decided we like the look of tile edges. So I painted them the same color as the rest of the table & we LOVE the faceted look it has.

Overall this table turned out perfect for our space – the size, the style, the color… it’s all just perfect! And that’s the great thing about it… you make make this custom console table to your exact needs & specifications!

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