Inglewood Craftsman Home

Restoring our 1906 home in Inglewood CA on a budget

Inglewood Craftsman DIY Coffee Table

Handmade Wood Table for the Front Patio


–Guest post by Jon–

For the past year or so, on our front porch we’ve been using a Craftsman-style coffee table that Morgan originally found on the side of the road. It was the perfect size and matched the house, but was not meant to be outdoors. Over time, the veneer around the edges of the table top peeled off, and water damage began to discolor and warp the wood. So I decided to just make a new table top, since the rest of the table seemed to be in good shape.

Old, weathered table top

Old, weathered table top

I modified the design a bit from the original table top by using wood slats, in order to drain water, instead of a solid wood surface. I started by making a frame out of 3/4×3″ boards. Using a dado blade on the table saw, I cut rabet joints on each of the end boards, where the horizontal slats would fit in. Then, after cutting rabets on each end of all of the slats, I put them into the frame and spaced them out with 1/16″ spacers that I cut earlier.

Table Frame

Table frame with rabet joints cut at the top and bottom

Closeup on rabet joint

Closeup on rabet joint

Spacers keep each slat the exact same distance apart from each other while the glue dries.

Spacers keep each slat the exact same distance apart from each other while the glue dries. You can see the table legs and frame int he background.

After the top was assembled, I attached a 1″x1″ frame on the underside to mount into the existing table legs.

Frame on the table top

Frame on the table top

I then stained the top. However, the color was a bit different on the top than on the legs. I actually preferred the look of the new table top, so I decided to just make new legs as well. I took a picture of the old frame and legs and went to Home Depot to get more supplies.

The legs and frame of the table

The legs and frame of the table

I cut the four 2″ legs out of a 4×4, used 3/4″ x 3″ wood for the frame, then cut 20 3/4″x 3/4″ square rods for the vertical slats at each end of the table.

4x4 Cut Down

Cut down a 4×4 in to 2x2s

Vertical Slats

3/4″ Vertical slats, with 3/4′ spacers

routed wood

Routed out the 3/4×3″ pieces of wood to accommodate the vertical slats.

Assembling the end pieces with the 10 vertical slats was a bit of a challenge because of how many small pieces of wood needed to be glued, but once those were finished, the process went very smoothly.

I put the frame together using a pocket hole jig and two screws going from the frame rails into the legs. Then I added a 10 inch wide piece of 1/4″ plywood for the bottom, since Dante likes to sit there when he’s hiding from Skinny.

Frame all put together and waiting for glue to dry

Frame fully assembled and waiting for glue to dry

Skinny hard at work, as usual

Skinny hard at work, as usual

Then it was on to stain and poly. I put two coats of polyurethane on everything, then an additional two coats on the table top and the legs, since they are the most exposed to the elements.

IMG_3988 IMG_3987

After a week of drying and curing in the basement, we have a brand new patio table that should last us a long time!

IMG_4030 IMG_4027


Author: Morgan | Culture | Meredith

Morgan Meredith writes about mental health, travel, and tech, based on her own experiences. Morgan left her job at a tech startup in 2017 to travel the world, and hasn’t stopped! She’s passionate about making travel as accessible for people with mental health challenges as it is for those who are nerotypical. She is also an outspoken advocate for destigmatizing mental health. Morgan received an MFA from Washington University in St. Louis, and a BFA and BA at Bradley University. Hire Morgan for your project or speaking engagement at

2 thoughts on “Handmade Wood Table for the Front Patio

  1. Pingback: Homestay | Inglewood Craftsman Home

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s