Category Archives: Projects

Be Thou the unseen guest at every meal

My wife wanted a farmhouse table for Christmas this year. She found plans online, and apparently the window boxes I made her for Mother’s Day ¬†(incredibly rustic and simple window boxes, I might add)¬†impressed her enough that she came to believe I could actually construct furniture.

Out of wood.

Sometimes I don’t know whether to be pleased or frustrated with her confidence.

I consulted with my master-carpenter father on the plans, but this was my first significant DYI project flying solo. I’m actually quite pleased with how it turned out.


The only modifications I made to the plans were cutting the length of the table top down by about 16 inches, pushing the two outside supports back from the table edge by 20 inches to allow seating at the ends, and adding an extra layer of 1x6s between the tabletop and the outside supports for additional reinforcement.


A hand-held jig saw was essential for cutting these corner pieces. I built the three supports first, from untreated 2x4s and 2x6s. Predrilled all holes and then added wood glue. When they were dry I stained with two coats of whatever my wife picked out (dark walnut, I think).


A Kreg jig was essential for the tabletop to drill the pocket holes. The tabletop consists of two panels of 1x6s drilled into a 2×4 frame. The central support rests on the 2×4 in the middle of the table, but the original plans had the outside supports resting on only the 2x4s at the table’s edge. I added the extra layer of 1x6s at each support to address this. (Kids tend to climb on tables at our house.)


The top also got two coats of stain and then three of polyurethane. This guy seems pretty happy with it. The plans estimated the total cost of the project at $125 dollars, but the plans omitted some lumber and then I bought some bad 2x2s. With stain and polyurethane and maybe buying myself a cheeseburger or something on one of my multiple trips to Lowes, this project cost us $200 and three days worth of labor.

My wife helped me wrestle the tabletop up from the basement, out the back door, and around into the dining room where it was all assembled.

I may have miscalculated though, because now she seems to believe I should be able to construct additional furniture-type items.