Shaker Style DIY End Table

Build a shaker style DIY end table with these free plans and tutorial.

DIY End Table

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Alright, here it is – table #4 of the four part end table series! In case you missed it over on my Instagram page, we’ve been considering new end tables for our living room but couldn’t decide on a style, so I just went ahead and built a few! This table is the most detailed of the four and would also make a great nightstand if you’re in the market!

I’ll be honest, I ran into a few issues during assembly on this one … basically I took this thing apart and assembled it like 57 different ways before I figured out the best way to do it. But don’t worry! I wrote the plans the correct way and you shouldn’t have any issues! Nothing like winging it to remind you NOT to wing it haha. But it worked out in the end.

For a full video of the build, head to my BRAND SPANKIN’ NEW YouTube channel! And don’t forget to SUBSCRIBE while you’re there to see lots more how-to videos.

Enjoy the plans!

TOOLS & SUPPLIES

Lumber:

  • 2 | 2 x 2 @ 8′
  • 2 | 1 x 2 @ 6′
  • 1 | 1 x 3 @ 6′
  • 1 | 1 x 6 @ 6′
  • 1 | Sheet of 3/4″ Plywood (You could get away with a 1/4 sheet and a 1/2 sheet if you prefer. They usually sell partial sheets next to the full sheets)
  • 1 | 1/4 Sheet of 1/4″ Plywood

Cuts:

  • 4 | 2 x 2 @ 23″ (legs)
  • 8 | 1 x 2 @ 12″ (frame)
  • 4 | 2 x 2 @ 12″ (top frame)
  • 3 | 1 x 6 @ 16 1/2″ (table top)
  • 2 | 1 x 3 @ 6 3/4″ (cabinet door rails)
  • 2 | 1 x 3 @ 13 1/2″ (cabinet door stiles)
  • 1 | 3/4″ Plywood @ 13 1/2″ x 13 1/2″ (see cut diagram below – top shelf)
  • 3 | 3/4″ Plywood @ 12″ x 15 1/4″ (cabinet sides and back)
  • 1 | 3/4″ Plywood @ 12″ x 12″ (bottom shelf)
  • 1 | 1/4″ Plywood @ 7 1/8″ x 8 7/8″ (cabinet door)

DIY End Table Top Shelf Cut Diagram:

Once you cut the top shelf to 13 1/2″ x 13 1/2″, use a jigsaw to cut 3/4″ out of each corner. These little notches fit around the legs when you put the top shelf in place.

Shaker Style DIY End Table step 10

Step 1.

Build two frames as shown below.

Shaker Style DIY End Table step 1

Use wood glue and two 1 1/4″ pocket hole screws on each end of the 1x2s to attach them to the legs. Position the 1x2s so they’re flush with the outside of the legs and face the pocket holes toward the inside to best hide them.

Shaker Style DIY End Table step 2

Step 2.

Join both frames together with 1x2s in the front and back. Again, position the 1x2s flush with the outside of the legs and face the pocket holes toward the inside of the frame to best hide them. Use wood glue and two 1 1/4″ pocket hole screws on each end of the 1x2s.

Shaker Style DIY End Table step 3

Don’t forget to flip that bottom front 1×2 horizontal! It will be part of the bottom shelf when you put the plywood in place. Line the bottom of it up with the bottom of the rest of the 1x2s (2″ up from the ground).

Step 3.

Attach the 3/4″ plywood sides and back. Line the plywood panels up so they are flush with the bottom of the 1x2s and attach with wood glue and 1 1/4″ finish nails.

If you don’t own a brad nailer, you can use screws (or a hammer and nails). I just used brad nails and wood glue since the panels aren’t structural for the frame – they just close it in.

Shaker Style DIY End Table step 4

When the plywood is lined up with the bottom of the frame 1x2s, there should be 3/4″ exposed along the top of each of those top 1x2s.

Here’s a top view:

Shaker Style DIY End Table step 5

And from the side:

Shaker Style DIY End Table step 6

Step 4.

Next, put the bottom shelf in place.

Shaker Style DIY End Table step 7

Use wood glue and 1 1/4″ pocket hole screws to attach it to the frame.

Shaker Style DIY End Table step 8

Step 5.

Apply wood glue to the tops of the 3/4″ plywood side panels and put the top shelf in place. It should slide in and sit on top of those plywood panels like this:

Shaker Style DIY End Table step 9

Step 6.

Once the top shelf is in place, attach the top 2x2s to complete the frame with wood glue and two 2 1/2″ pocket hole screws on each end.

Shaker Style DIY End Table step 11

Originally, I built the entire frame and then tried to put the top shelf in … guess how well that worked haha! This order of assembly should work much better for you!

So that’s it for the DIY end table base. Next up – the cabinet door and tabletop.

Step 7.

I went with a shaker style cabinet door for this end table. I wrote a whole separate post on my go-to method to build shaker style cabinet doors, but there are a million ways to do it. If you’re an experienced woodworker, feel free to build it as you see fit. If you’re interested in how I did it, see my post on how to build shaker cabinet doors.

Here are the dimensions for the door to fit this end table:

Shaker Style DIY End Table step 12

Step 8.

Put the tabletop boards together with wood glue and 1 1/4″ pocket hole screws. I stagger the pocket holes in opposite directions for a good joint along the length of the tabletop.

Shaker Style DIY End Table step 13

For more information, see my post on how to build a tabletop.

Step 9.

I recommend sanding and staining the end table before you attach the door and tabletop so you don’t have to work around as many corners.

DIY End Table

I stained this DIY end table with my latest favorite stain combination – pre stain, white wash pickling, and early american – then sealed it with glossy water based polyurethane.

Step 10.

Attach the cabinet door with 2″ butt hinges and install a small magnetic door catch behind the front frame to stop the door flush with the frame when it closes. I used a small scrap 1×2 as a block to attach the magnetic catch.

Shaker Style DIY End Table magnetic catch

Finish the door off with a knob or pull of your choice. I used a 4″ soft iron handle to match the rest of the cabinets in our house.

Lastly, attach the tabletop to the base. You can screw directly through the top 2x2s into the bottom of the tabletop, but you’ll have to go at a slight angle since a standard size drill won’t fit between the top shelf and tabletop.

I used small 3/4″ corner braces and attached them to the bottom of the tabletop first, then put it in place on the frame and screwed them to the top 2×2 frame. I wouldn’t recommend this method since it was such a pain to get the corner braces positioned correctly, but that’s what I did!

Honestly, this would be a great time to use one of those nifty right angle drill attachments. I seriously just ordered it after building this table haha!

DIY End Table

Please let me know if you have any questions on this DIY end table and I’ll get back to you as soon as possible!

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DIY End Table

Reader Interactions

Comments

  1. Julie-Ann says

    This looks great! How did you do the finish? Did you stain with the early american first then use the white wash over the top?

    • tylynn_sattler says

      Thanks! I did pre-stain, white wash and let it dry. Then I did early american and wiped it off immediately.

  2. Donnie says

    I really like the shaker style end table could you send me the plans .29 w Oak st Mascoutah ill 62258
    Thank you
    Beginner wood worker.

    • tylynn_sattler says

      Thanks! I sanded it to 120 grit, applied pre-stain then whitewash pickling and wiped it off. Let the whitewash pickling dry. Then apply early american stain and wipe it off immediately. That should do it! The white wash takes the yellowy color out of the pine, but you have to make sure it’s pretty dry before applying the stain so the stain pigments don’t just separate when you put it over the whitewash. I usually let it dry for about 20 minutes before going over with the early american

  3. Annette says

    Hi! We love these plans! Such a cute table! Could you lease give us inside cabinet dimensions? We want to use it to store vinyl records and can’t tell for certain how big the inside cabinet is with the door shut. Thanks!

  4. Dustin says

    Thank you! As I started I noticed I had a lot of scraps in almost the dimensions you referenced so I kept it true “early American” and used what I had and modified as I went. Table top and 2x2s are oak taken from my wife’s great grandparents barn so I hand planed and scraped to smooth and used left over birch plywood for the sides. I’m torn n how to stain it now. My thoughts were natural on the oak and then play with mixes until I get the plywood close. Any suggestions?

    • tylynn_sattler says

      Yeah I think I’d do that and just see if you can get it close. Otherwise, just make it a totally different color so it doesn’t look like you tried to match. That might be kinda a cool accent.

    • tylynn_sattler says

      About a day of building and two days of finishing. I did stain and polyurethane so I had to wait for them to dry.

  5. Kelly says

    Is the 2×2 actual size? Or are you using 1.5×1.5? The measurements didn’t work out when we put it together with 2×2. Also curious how you got yours with squared edges, we can not find them anywhere. Thank you.

    • tylynn_sattler says

      The ACTUAL dimensions of dimensional lumber (2x2s, 2x4s, 4x4s, basically anything you buy at a normal home improvement store – not a sawmill) is different from their dimensional name. So 2x2s are actually 1.5″ x 1.5″. 2x4s are actually 1.5″ x 3.5″. And so on. You can look up charts to see what the ACTUAL dimensions are for each size of dimensional lumber. Dimensional lumber is named for the dimensions it’s cut to before they run it through the planer and send it to the store.

      You can buy squared 2x2s at Home Depot, Menards, Lowes. They’re usually called “select” boards. I cut these ones myself on my table saw. They’re the standard size of a 2×2, which is 1.5″ x 1.5″.

    • tylynn_sattler says

      Thanks! I don’t usually give cost estimates since the price of lumber and supplies can vary a lot depending on your location and what supplies you already have on-hand.

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