My wife’s parents had an old dining table for over 15 years that had to be replaced. My wife suggested to come up with a design and build a functional table considering the floor layout. Their small dining area sits right next to the kitchen with cabinets that divide the two. With a limited amount of space in their small dining room, I designed a corner bench with storage and a DIY Dining Table with Intertwined Legs. I made sure that the lid on the bench could be easily opened without hitting the table.
Having a table with four legs in this scenario would not work because of the corner bench. The legs would have blocked the entrance for someone to slide into the far corner. My first thought was to make one leg in the center of the table. But then after playing around in my design software, I came up with a design that looks much better than just one straight leg in the middle. I used regular 4×4 construction lumber from Home Depot that was cut at 45 degrees and intertwined together in a bundle. The table design works well and does not block the entrance to the corner bench.
Choosing a Dining Table
The dining room is an essential part of your home. This is where you serve food and enjoy a meal with family and friends. This area is where many memories are made and a place that is utilized more than a lot of furniture around the house. If you happen to have a smaller house, this table can be used for many purposes besides food: have private conversations, play board games, or children can do their homework as well. There are many factors to consider when building a dining table. How big is my dining area? Do I want a rectangular or round table? Should I have chairs or a bench? What type of material should a table be made out of? Choosing the right furniture is very important, which in turn will make the room even more comfortable.
Benefits of Family Meals
The study has shown that families who eat together are twice as likely to eat their five servings of fruits and veggies. Also, kids tend to eat a wider variety of foods and are less picky. It promotes language and social skills as well. Families that eat together have a stronger bond, that’s when they reconnect after their diverse activities throughout the day. And when more home-cooked meals are made it also saves them money. Family meals can become a tradition that can be passed down to the next generation, reaping the benefits for their own families as well.
The plans I created for this table are free to use and could be modified to your needs. You also might be interested in DIY wooden bar stools for this table set as well.
Tools for this project
- 1x10x8′ (x3)
- 4x4x8′ (x2)
- 2x4x8′ (x4)
- 1 1/4″ Pocket hole screws
- 2 1/2″ Pocket Hole Screws
- 2″ Wood Screws
- Wood Glue
- 3/8″ Dowel Rod
Note: Lumber dimensions are listed as nominal size. See lumber sizes for actual dimensions vs nominal.
Disclosure: Some of the links on this page as well as links in “tools for this project” and “material list” sections are affiliate links.
Step 1 – Cut and Assemble Top
Take 1×10 board and cut five boards to 48″ in length. The two boards on each side of the table will need to have a 45° cut, see picture. Make the 45° cut per dimensions shown below. Then drill pocket holes using Kreg Jig that is set to 3/4″ thick board. Assemble the top boards together using 1 1/4″ pocket hole screws and wood glue. Use pipe clamps to hold the boards in place before screwing in.
Step 2 – Assemble Sides of a Tabletop
When attaching the sideboards to the tabletop, it’s important to make sure there are no gaps between the seams. The sideboards need to be perfect in length, you don’t want the board to be too short or too long. Before cutting these boards, each side would need to be measured individually. The 2×4’s side will need to be cut at 22.5° using a miter saw. The short 2x4s will have pocket holes for 1 1/4″ screws, but the long boards will not have any pocket holes. Attach these boards with pocket holes screws and wood glue. Clamp the sideboards to the tabletop to prevent any movement before attaching.
Step 3 – Notch a Section in Two of the Legs
To build the legs, take 4×4 and cut two boards to 40 3/4″ in length at 45° on both sides. Cut 1 3/4″ deep and 3 1/2″ wide notch in the center using a miter saw or a skill saw. Use a wood chisel to clean up the notch from any high areas.
Step 4 – Assemble the Table Legs Together
Apply wood glue inside the notch and slide both legs together creating a cross shape leg. Screw-in two 2 1/2″ wood screws right in the middle of the notch to hold the legs together.
Step 5 – Cut and Drill Pocket Holes for Legs
To attach the remaining legs, take 4×4 board and cut four pieces to 20 3/8″ in length at 45 degrees as shown in the picture. See cut list for exact measurement. Drill two pocket holes on each side of the leg for 2 1/2″ screws.
Step 6 – Attach All Legs Together
Draw a horizontal line in the center of the cross. Place the cross legs on a flat surface so that legs will sit flat on the floor. Then place the lower 4×4 leg against the horizontal line and attach it using 2 1/2″ pocket hole screws and wood glue. Once the lower legs are attached, do the same thing with the upper 4×4 legs.
Step 7 – Attach Legs to Table Top
Take 2×4 and cut three pieces to 46″ in length. Flip the tabletop face down on the floor. Attach one of the 2×4s using 2″ wood screws to the tabletop in the center. The other two supporting boards would need to be placed so that the legs would land on them and attach these using 2″ wood screws as well.
Step 8 – Cover Pocket Holes with Dowels
If you prefer to cover up the pocket holes, take 3/8″ dowels and cut 16 pieces to 2″ in length. Dip the dowel into wood glue and hammer it inside the pocket hole. Using a dovetail saw cut off the dowel leaving you with a flat surface. Using a random orbital sander, sand around the dowel area to make it smooth. Paint and stain. You’re done with this DIY Dining Table.
5 thoughts on “How to Build a DIY Dining Table with Cross Legs”
Very crafty. I bet you are, now, the favorite son-in-law. I like the table and especially with the arrangement of the corner.
Yes, so far I’m her favorite son-in-law.
Is this table top heavy? I have a 3 year old little boy. Do you think it could fall over on him?
Yes, the tabletop is heavy.