Inside: Make this DIY Coffee Table with a chevron pattern to add style and character to your space. It works well with many design styles such as farmhouse, coastal and rustic.
It props my feet up. It holds my popcorn, Godiva and glass of cab while I am sucked deep into my latest Netflix binge-watching marathon. The only thing it requires of me is a dusting every now and then. Such a small request for all that it gives.
I would be lost without it!
Your coffee table is an important piece of furniture. It’s a friend to your couch, it centers the room and it holds your 10 remotes. If you are ready for a new coffee table you are in luck. I have a DIY Coffee Table with Chevron Pattern that will bring up your family room a huge notch. Plus you can build it for $50 for the cost of the wood.
Before you get started make sure to measure your living/family room, sofa and surrounding furniture to make sure you have adequate space for your planned coffee table build.
How to Determine the Correct Size Coffee Table to Build
The beauty of DIY is you can pick any size you want your coffee table to be. Since a sofa, and living rooms come in various sizes build your coffee table to fit your specific room’s needs. For the best fit and scale consider these measurements:
- The distance between the coffee table and sofa should fall between 14-18 inches. Close enough to reach drinks but far enough away for no bruised knees.
- Most coffee tables are around 16-18 inches tall. Since sofa heights vary aim to keep the coffee table height the same height of your sofa cushions or between two inches higher or lower than the cushions.
- The length of the coffee table should be at least 1/2 the length of your sofa and even better if it is 2/3 the length of the sofa.
- The width of most rectangle coffee tables are 18-24 inches. If you have more room or an L shaped sectional, a square or round shaped coffee table works well.
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*Before you get started make sure you have your Safety Gear. For this project, I recommend safety goggles, ear protection and a P100 mask.
Let’s build it!
TOOLS FOR DIY COFFEE TABLE
- Tape measure
- Miter saw – I use this miter saw
- Table saw or circular saw
- Drill – I use this drill
- Kreg Jeg – I have the K5
- Sander – I use this orbital sander with 150 grit sandpaper
- 18G Brad nailer – I use this 18G brad nailer
SUPPLIES FOR DIY COFFEE TABLE
- 3 – 2 x 4 x 8 (rip cut down to 1 1/2 inch wide) or 6 – 2 x 2 x 8
- 1 sheet of 48 x 96 x 3/4 inch sanded plywood (you will use less than a half sheet)
- 4 – 1 x 3 x 8
- 32 – 2 1/2 inch pocket hole screws
- 22 – 1 1/4 inch pocket hole screws
- Wood glue
- Wood filler
- Wood stain – I used Varathane Sun Bleached and Minwax Early American
- Glaze (optional)
- Black and white latex paint (optional)
- Sealer – I used Varathane Triple Thick Poly
- Felt pads (optional)
CUTS FOR DIY COFFEE TABLE
*My coffee table measures app. 48L x 22W x 16T inches. Adjust your measurements according to your sizing preference. Due to variances in thickness of wood, errors in measurements and cuts, I recommend cutting your pieces as you progress through the build. Remember always measure twice, cut once.
- 4 – 2 x 2s cut 42 inches for long sides of base
- 4 – 2 x 2s cut 16 inches for short sides of base
- 4 – 2 x 2s cut 14 1/2 inches for legs
- 2 – 2 x 2s cut 48 inches with a 45 degree miter cut for long sides of top frame
- 2 – 2 x 2s cut 22 inches with a 45 degree miter cut for short sides of top frame
- 1 – 3/4 inch plywood cut 45 x 19 inches for tabletop
- 1 – 3/4 inch plywood cut 42 x 16 inches bottom shelf
- Several cuts – 1 x 3s – sizes vary due to chevron pattern
*Optional – I added a 22.5 degree bevel cut taper to the bottom of all of the legs. This adds a nice customized touch to the legs.
STEPS TO BUILD DIY COFFEE TABLE
Step 1) Start out by building the base. Drill 1 1/2 inch pocket holes on the ends of both the long and short side base pieces.
Attach the sides to the legs using wood glue and 2 1/2 inch pocket hole screws. I attached each long side to the legs first then the short sides. *Tip I think it would be easier to attach the short sides first and then attach the long sides as it was difficult to get my drill and the long bit in the smaller space. It’s helpful to use clamps to clamp the pieces together while you insert the pocket holes or your joint can become misaligned. I used a piece of scrap wood under the bottom part of the base to create a 2-inch clearance for the legs. Attach the two sides of the base together using the 16-inch wood cuts (short sides of base).
Step 2) Mark and drill pocket holes for the bottom shelf. I marked my pocket holes two inches from the ends and about 6-8 inches around the board. I used a 5/8 inch pocket hole as I found out that the screw poked through the plywood using a 3/4 inch pocket hole. I recommend doing a practice test on the boards to find the best pocket hole depth.
Attach the bottom shelf to the bottom 2 x 2 frame using 1 1/4 inch pocket hole screws.
Step 3) Attach the plywood tabletop using wood glue and 1 1/4 inch 18G brad nails.
Step 4) Cut and attach the tabletop frame. Apply wood glue to the edge of the tabletop plywood and nail the 2 x 2 frame to the plywood using 2 inch 18G brad nails. Make sure to run the nails along the bottom 3/4 inches of the 2 x 2 so the nails go in the plywood and not above it. It helps to hold a scrap 1 by board (3/4 inch thick board) up to the frame to keep it flush as you nail all four sides of the frame.
Step 5) Cut and add your chevron pieces. I marked center and drew a horizontal and vertical line on the tabletop. This helps for your measurements and for keeping the chevron pieces aligned. Start in the center and work your way out. You may have to make several cuts to get the pieces to fit well. To make the chevron pattern each end has a 45-degree miter cut. Dry fit all your pieces to test them out.
With the small triangle pieces at the ends, I used scrap 1 x 4. Once you are satisfied then keep all the pieces in place and apply wood glue to one piece at a time. Allow to dry.
Step 6) Apply wood filler and sand the coffee table. I applied wood filler to all the nail holes and to small gaps between the chevron pieces. I sanded using 150 grit sandpaper.
Then I mixed 4:1 glaze to black latex paint and dry brushed it. I repeated this with a 4:1 glaze to white latex paint and dry brushed it on as well. This added a worn, layered look.
Step 8) Apply a sealer. I used a triple-thick poly and applied a couple of coats. I also added felt pads to the bottom of all the legs to keep it from scratching the floors.
I hope you enjoyed this build! Now back to my next Netflix episode and popcorn!