If you’re an avid DIYer, you already know there’s something so satisfying about building your own furniture.
Maybe it’s because you know just how much hard work went into it, or maybe it’s the fact that DIYing allows you to customize your furniture to fit your home’s aesthetic perfectly. Whatever the reason may be, nothing beats proudly displaying something you made with your own two hands in your home. Even better if you can save money along the way, too!
So whether you’re brand new to the DIY furniture world or are just looking for a new project to spruce up your space for the season, you’ve got to check out this fantastic DIY console table tutorial. Whether you use it as a TV stand, a bookshelf, or a makeshift entryway table, this DIY console table is the perfect way to add a little storage to any room in your home that needs it.
Learn How to Create Your Own Console Table: A DIY Tutorial
We love this console table design for its farmhouse style, versatility, and inexpensive supply list. You can find many ways to use a DIY console table like this in your home, and everything on our shopping list should cost under $50. Plus, it only takes an afternoon to put together, making it a great project for DIYers of any skill level. Let’s get started!
Console Table vs. Sofa Table: What’s the Difference?
You might be wondering: If I build a DIY console table, can I also use it as a sofa table? Before we get into the DIY, it may be helpful to address the difference between these two terms so that we’re all on the same page.
Some people may use “sofa table” and “console table” interchangeably, but technically, they’re two different things, even if they look pretty similar at first glance.
Console tables are typically placed against a wall and are used to house small decorations or maybe even provide a little extra storage. Sofa tables are designed to be placed behind a couch, especially if you’ve placed your couch in the center of the room (rather than against a wall). Because of this, sofa tables are generally shorter in height than console tables and often don’t provide that extra storage element.
Ultimately, this DIY tutorial is incredibly versatile, so it can be used however you see fit. No matter what specific space you need to fill in your home, this DIY console table is sure to be a beautiful addition.
DIY Console Table Tutorial
To make this console table you will need:
- (10) 8-foot 2×4 boards
- (2) 8-foot 1×2 boards
- 2 ½ inch premium trim screws
- 4 ½ inch HeadLOK screws
- Miter saw
- Nail gun
- Brad nails
- Wood glue
- Rubber mallet
***Important note: Always use extreme caution and common sense when using power tools. Follow all manufacturer’s instructions, wear safety gear and build at your own risk.***
Step 1: Cut, Sand, and Prep Your Wood Pieces
When it comes time to cut the wood for your console table, you might be wondering: How tall should my console table be?
Console tables can vary in size, but for this tutorial, you’ll first need four 5-foot pieces of 2×4 boards for the top. FYI: I used 1x2s as brace pieces for the console. You will need six of these 10 ½ inch long brace pieces.
While my console was in pieces, I drilled in two of my support pieces underneath the console’s top. They are positioned ½ inch from the edge with 1 ¾ inch left on each side. I used 2 ½ inch premium screws to hold this in place. These screws are a bit pricey, but with their smaller head, I think they look better and are hardly noticeable.
Pro tip: Always drill a pilot hole before drilling the screws into the wood. A pilot hole will prevent the wood from splitting.
Alright, now let’s get back to the wood pieces. For the two bottom shelves, you will need three 59-inch long pieces each of 2×4 boards. That is six total pieces all together.
For the legs, you will need four 32 ½-inch pieces of 2x4s. Then, I sanded all my pieces with a hand sander.
Pro Tip: What kind of wood should I use for my DIY console table?
When it comes down to it, the type of wood you use for your console table doesn’t matter too much— simply choose a type of wood that fits your desired home aesthetic!
Hardwoods like oak, maple, mahogany, cherry, and walnut look great and are typically widely available if you don’t already have a type of wood in mind or aren’t sure where to start.
Step 2: Assemble Your DIY Console Table
Now it’s time for the fun part— assembly time!
I already showed you how I assembled my table top. The legs were the second thing that we put together. The first brace piece is ⅛ of an inch from the bottom and middle brace piece is 16 inches from the bottom on each leg. To hide the screws, we screwed in the 2 ½ inch screw from the back and at an angle. Be careful not to let your screw show on the other side.
Attaching the Tabletop
Next, we attached the tabletop to the legs using HeadLOK decorative screws. I have used these screws on our farmhouse kitchen table and picnic table— be sure to check out those great DIY tutorials if you haven’t already! What’s great about these decorative screws is that they’re very pretty, so you won’t mind them showing on your finished piece of furniture. You’ll need one of these on each corner of your console table–four screws in all.
Adding the Shelves
Next, we set the first shelf into place beneath the tabletop. The fit was tight, so we used a rubber mallet to ensure everything was properly in place.
Then we flipped our console upside down to drill the brace pieces.
Pro tip: To keep all the boards lined up nicely, we used a clamp to hold everything in place as we drilled the boards into the brace pieces. While your console table is flipped upside down, you may also want to place some boards underneath, so the tabletop doesn’t get scratched.
And don’t forget to drill your pilot holes before screwing these boards together, too!
This step is optional, but we drilled two screws on each side at an angle for extra support. If you decide to do this, definitely take it slow! You don’t want to drill through your wood at a weird angle. Note: This is also how we drilled the brace pieces into the legs earlier.
Next, we carefully laid our console table on its side and drilled on the bottom shelf using the same method as above.
The last thing we did before this DIY console table was complete was add two Xs on each side. While they’re completely decorative, the Xs are a great touch to finish the project. These were custom cut for each spot using 1×2 boards and 50° on each end. To attach them, we used a nail gun, brad nails, and a little wood glue in between each piece.
Here is the finished DIY console table. Wasn’t that easy? If you’re going for a more rustic look, feel free to sand it down again or even just in certain spots as needed.
Step 3: Stain Your Console Table
Staining your DIY console table is entirely optional. But I think a great stain can take just about any project to the next level, especially if you’re working with wood. Yes, that even includes furniture that’s made with 2x4s!
What color should I stain my DIY console table?
Personally, my go-to stain color is dark walnut. It looks great and can fit just about any home decor aesthetic! But when it comes to staining, your options are endless. Simply choose a stain color that works best for your personal style.
Pro tip: Always use rubber gloves when staining a DIY project. I also use an old rag, work the stain into the wood, and then wipe off any excess stain with a clean rag. Let that dry for 24 hours.
Step 4: Decorate Your Console Table
Once your console table is fully dry, it’s time to place it in the perfect spot in your home and decorate it to your heart’s content. Console tables are the perfect place to house seasonal decorations or even store different home decor items when you’re not using them.
This is how you’ll make your console table your own, so have fun!
Try This Versatile Console Table DIY Today
In a pinch, console tables can be a fantastic storage solution in so many spots throughout your home. In our house, we have it in the family room with the TV on top and miscellaneous living room clutter on the bottom shelf in cute storage baskets.
This DIY console table could be used in an entryway, as a sofa table, or even as a bookshelf. I love versatile furniture pieces that you can use all over your home. I’m constantly changing up the furniture around our home, and using a similar style as my other DIY pieces (like this DIY blanket ladder) will help me fit this console table right in wherever I need it to go.
I hope you tackle this project for your home. Don’t forget to pin this project for later. 🙂
Pin for Later:
- 5 Small Bathroom Storage Ideas That Will Blow Your Mind
- How to Build a DIY Wooden Crate for Extra Storage at Home
- How to Organize Tools with a Garage Pegboard
Update: This post was originally published on November 28, 2017 by Ginger Bowie. It was revised on January 24, 2019, with new information from Molli Spear, and was revised again on October 7th, 2022 with further information from Emily Malkowski.