Farmhouse table

  • Advertise with us
Project by tworedballs posted 06-29-2010 07:15 PM 11831 views 9 times favorited 22 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This is my first attempt at making furniture. I used some legs I purchased from Lowes and hand cut my tenons while using a chisel to make my mortises. I got the pine boards from my father who dismantled a book case he made 30 years ago. I bought a Stanley hand plane and got the top to the thickness I wanted and left the plane marks so it has a more “hand made” feeling to it. I painted the base with milk paint after staining it and then distressed it. A couple of different colors of stain and some poly on the top and there you have it.

Damn thing weighs around 150 lbs., but the pinned joinery keeps it tight.

22 comments so far

View Knothead62's profile


2600 posts in 3233 days

#1 posted 06-29-2010 07:27 PM

Well done!

View schloemoe's profile


709 posts in 3210 days

#2 posted 06-29-2010 07:57 PM

Nice table I like the contrasting top color over the legs. Very nice…....................Schloemoe

-- schloemoe, Oregon , http://www.

View swirt's profile


3677 posts in 3244 days

#3 posted 06-29-2010 07:57 PM

It has a really nice look to it. The painted legs with the aged top look great.
Did you do anything for the end banding to deal with the seasonal movement of the wood? (is it floating, how is it attached…)

-- Galootish log blog,

View tworedballs's profile


36 posts in 3162 days

#4 posted 06-29-2010 08:03 PM

The top 3 boards are 6/4 pine with 3 pine stringers running underneath attached with brass screws to keep them in line. Then I took the 4th board and ripped it to 9/4 and turned it on end and used it to “band” the pieces together. So the top appears to be 9/4, but it’s really 6/4.

View swirt's profile


3677 posts in 3244 days

#5 posted 06-29-2010 08:12 PM

That creates a nice illusion of a massive top. I see the side banding looks like it is either pegged on or screws hidden with plugs, but I can’t tell how the end banding is attached.

-- Galootish log blog,

View tworedballs's profile


36 posts in 3162 days

#6 posted 06-29-2010 08:17 PM

The top is the only piece that uses screws. I used 3” wood screws to secure the banding to the 3 center boards and covered them with plugs to give the illusion of being pinned with wooden dowels.

Thanks for all the kind words, guys. I’ve already contracted with a lady in my city to build her 2 coffee tables and an end table in the same style, so it looks like this is going where I wanted. Now I just need to buy some tools!!!

View swirt's profile


3677 posts in 3244 days

#7 posted 06-29-2010 08:56 PM

Congrats on the new requests for work.

You might run into wood movement issues as those large top planks breathe a lot in width and the end band breathes only a little bit in length. It is a common crossgrain seasonal wood movement issue. There are lots of solutions but unfortunately none of them are perfect.

• breadboard ends
• elongated screw holes on the banding for the screws that go into the two outer planks
• joining the mitered corners and only putting a screw in the center
I’m sure others here have other solutions.

-- Galootish log blog,

View tworedballs's profile


36 posts in 3162 days

#8 posted 06-29-2010 09:10 PM

The only movement I’ve seen thus far is the gap between the center board and the two boards either side of it. When I started the project there was no gap at all and now I have a 3/32 gap, but nothing on the corner banding (as the picture shows, it is still a VERY tight joint held together with nothing).

I contemplated doing a bread board style end, but didn’t like the idea of having it be wider.

how is it that companies like Pottery Barn make tables like this all day long, but you don’t see the bread board being wider to account for movement?

View swirt's profile


3677 posts in 3244 days

#9 posted 06-29-2010 09:49 PM

Not sure about the pottery barn…never been inside one. Are their tables made from real wood?

As you point out, the gaps between the two long boards are there. They are likely caused by your method of attaching the end banding as well as the cleats holding the boards together underneath. You are expecting them to open up at the corners, but that is only one of the two possible cases. The wood in the center has essentially exhaled, but the screws in the end banding have prevented the screw locations from moving, so essentially the centers of the boards stayed in place and the gaps opened up between them. If the screws were in slotted holes, they would have moved and probably stayed together … though the cleats underneath may be have caused the similar thing.

As the seasons swing you will likely see those gaps close up and new ones open up at the corners as the boards push the long edge banding away from the end banding. Mostly what determines where the failure will occur depends on when you assembled it. If you assembled it in the humid part of the year, the gaps will be as you see them now. If you assembled it at the dry part of the year, you will see them at the corners, and if you assembled it at the inbetweens, then you will see it at both places. The good side of the building in the inbetweens is that twice a year your table will be perfect. If you build it at one of the extremes, it will only be perfect once a year. ;)
When grains cross, somethings got to give.

-- Galootish log blog,

View olg28's profile


21 posts in 3228 days

#10 posted 06-29-2010 10:02 PM

Pretty nice table. Well done for a first !

View swirt's profile


3677 posts in 3244 days

#11 posted 06-29-2010 10:04 PM

I think I have an answer to your pottery barn question
Looking at this table
breadboard end
It actually has a breadboard end … but it is actually a faux breadboard end. The breadboard end slides out on rails so a second leaf can be dropped in. (which is actuall kind of cool) You can see it below.
sxtending breadboard
It isn’t fixed to the plank top, so there is no crossgrain issue at all.

This other one looks to have true breadboard ends
breadboard end
with tennons that fit into wider mortices. The peg (possible hiding a screw) you see in the picture probably fits into a oval slot in the tenon to allow for movement.

I couldn’t find one that showed any full banding, so I can’t say how they did it as it relates to your design.

-- Galootish log blog,

View BertFlores58's profile


1698 posts in 3194 days

#12 posted 06-29-2010 10:47 PM

Nice work on the table. I can see good proportion in there.

Sometimes, the wood is much lively, cooperative and does not give any problem if he likes what he is. I consider wood to have life. The grain pattern, the seasoning, strength and other aspect will always affect how you make it. ANYONE can always deserve to be LUCKY in doing woodwork because they do it BY HEART and partly with EXPERIENCE and TECHNOLOGY.

Thanks for posting. very impormative.

-- Bert

View michelletwo's profile


2778 posts in 3288 days

#13 posted 06-29-2010 11:12 PM

grand table for a first..looks strong enough to have the whole family around it, & you could butcher an elk on it!! whopper of a table!

View Ken90712's profile


17643 posts in 3461 days

#14 posted 06-29-2010 11:24 PM

Good looking table you have made here. Looks like it was from a old farm or barn congrats!

-- Ken, "Everyday above ground is a good day!"

View F Dudak's profile

F Dudak

342 posts in 4083 days

#15 posted 06-30-2010 01:58 AM

Great looking table! I could use one of those to throw some chairs under.

-- Fred.... Poconos, PA ---- Chairwright in the making ----

showing 1 through 15 of 22 comments

Have your say...

You must be signed in to post the comments.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics