Tutorial: A Table for the Holidays

This year, with more space in our new home, we will be hosting two holiday events.  The first is a holiday thanksgiving potluck with friends.  The second, is a christmas dinner and gift exchange with my husband's family.  Although we enlarged our dining room table top so that we could easily sit 10 at the table, we are still short a couple of seats for all of our guests.  So to remedy that we saw a couple of solutions - we could purchase or borrow a folding table.  However that would only set about an additional 6 -8.  Plus it meant that I would have to use a tablecloth (not my first choice).  So instead, I built this simply table for an elegant, yet simple way to additional seating.

Here's what you'll need:
2 - 20" x 96" unfinished tabletops from Lowe's
2 - 2x4x12
4 - butcher block legs (or you could use 4x4's)
4 - 1x4x12
wood screws (2.5")

First, I laid the two table top pieces side by side on the floor and laid the 1x4's on top to create the apron (outside of the support frame).  The dimensions for the pieces are 78" on the long side and 29" on the short side.  (Note: most of my measurements are rough - make sure you test your measurements and cuts to fit)

Then cut 3 ~28" pieces from a 2x4.  Space these evenly within the frame.  These will be your tabletop supports.  Pre-drill two holes on each side and attach with screws.

Then use screws to attach the 2x4s to the table top.

Next, cut 4 corner supports from the 2x4 (ends should be cut at 45 degrees).   Screw in from the outside of the frame and attach to the table top (like the supports in the middle).

Next, you just need to attach the legs.  We purchased four butcher block legs from Lowe's just because it was a little more finished looking than 4x4's (Click Here).  They're a little pricier.  The legs come at countertop height, so if you want a counter top height table, great - leave them as is.  For us, they were a little too tall, so we cut them to 29.5".

To attach them, pre-drill and use two screws from each apron to attach to the table.  We used 2.5" screws.

Finishing Touch - So you are going to have some screw heads still showing on the apron of your table. If you counter sink your screws, you can cover them with wood putty and stain or paint.  We simply cut a couple of additional 1x4 pieces and nailed them over the outside of the other pieces to create a nice finished look.

Now, get a friend to help flip the table over and finish as desired.  We used Varathane Stain in Early American.  Here's the table after one coat.

We used two coats of stain on the table and finished with a coat of polyacrylic.


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