Mission Style Coffee Table

  • Advertise with us
Project by Joe Heskett posted 02-14-2008 01:14 AM 2166 views 6 times favorited 14 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Here’s a coffee table I made for my charming wife. The design is based on a coffee table from the Stickley Mission Collection. This is my third project. I really learned some valuable skills (some of them from LJs, some of them by error). Next project: two end tables to match.

The table is made out of quarter sawn white oak I purchased from a local sawmill.
The table is 17 inches tall, 36 inches wide and 44 inches long.
Mortise and tenon construction throughout.
I used figure eights to attach the top.

The finishing routine:
1. Sanded to 220 grit
2. Applied one coat of custom mix of Minwax.
3. Applied one sealer coat of thinned Minwax Fast Drying Polyurethane.
4. Applied one coat of General Finishes Brown Mahogany Gel Stain.
5. Applied 4 coats of Minwax Fast Drying Polyurethane

-- Joe Heskett---Illinois

14 comments so far

View jeremy's profile


53 posts in 4837 days

#1 posted 02-14-2008 01:28 AM

Beautiful. Did you do all the mortises by hand. I did a morris chair in the same style. Arts and crafts is probably my favorite style. Keep up the good work.

-- Jeremy, Saratoga, NY

View Tim Pursell's profile

Tim Pursell

501 posts in 4840 days

#2 posted 02-14-2008 01:35 AM

Great looking table! I just love the look of QSWO. I’m sure the wife is very happy!


View Scott Bryan's profile

Scott Bryan

27249 posts in 4880 days

#3 posted 02-14-2008 01:40 AM

Very nice table. I am a fan of arts and craft furniture and quarter sawn white oak.

Thanks for sharing.

-- Challenges are what make life interesting; overcoming them is what makes life meaningful- Joshua Marine

View Grumpy's profile


26811 posts in 4909 days

#4 posted 02-14-2008 01:54 AM

Very nice job Joe.

-- Grumpy - "Always look on the bright side of life"- Monty Python

View Max's profile


56000 posts in 5331 days

#5 posted 02-14-2008 02:33 AM

Nice table. How thick is the top? Looks to be 5/4. On the glue up of the top did you use biscuits or just butt joints?

-- Max "Desperado", Salt Lake City, UT

View relic's profile


344 posts in 4995 days

#6 posted 02-14-2008 03:21 AM

The table is great. I’m making end tables and was thinking of this style for our coffee table, just not as wide. What is a custom mix of mixwax?

-- Andy

View griff's profile


1207 posts in 4820 days

#7 posted 02-14-2008 04:20 AM

Great looking coffee table, I like the oak

-- Mike, Bruce Mississippi = Jack of many trades master of none

View SPalm's profile


5338 posts in 4940 days

#8 posted 02-14-2008 04:34 AM

Good job. I like it. Your finish job is excellent.

-- -- I'm no rocket surgeon

View GaryK's profile


10262 posts in 5046 days

#9 posted 02-14-2008 05:20 AM

Great looking job! There is one thing that I noticed about the legs though.

The pattern is different on each side. I noticed that did turn them to make them match on the same side you are facing, which is good. To make this a lot less evident you could select the wood for the legs differently.

When you look at the end grain for the wood try to cut it so that the grain runs from one corner to the opposite corner. This will make the grain run straight on all four sides so they all look the same.

It’s something I learned a while back. Something to try on your end tables.

You can see what I am talking about here:

-- Gary - Never pass up the opportunity to make a mistake look like you planned it that way - Tyler, TX

View rikkor's profile


11295 posts in 4932 days

#10 posted 02-14-2008 01:49 PM

Beautiful. You did a very good job on this.

View Critterman's profile


601 posts in 4868 days

#11 posted 02-14-2008 10:56 PM

Great job Joe, one of the best mission coffee tables I’ve seen, the finish is very nice, not too shinny, and I really like the tone you came up with. Great advice from Gary as well, I didn’t notice the first look, but I have seen a video on FWW (someone from College of the Redwoods I think) talk about making legs like Gary’s Blog. But again, I didn’t even notice it at first. Guess we both learned something…LOL Good advice and a GREAT table. You couldn’t be persuaded to reveal you secret recipe could you?? :>)

-- Jim Hallada, Chesterfield, VA

View Joe Heskett's profile

Joe Heskett

23 posts in 4981 days

#12 posted 02-15-2008 05:03 AM

Jeremy, Thank you. I cut the mortises using a combination of chisel and a router.

Max, The top is 1 inch think. I glued the top using butt joints. What are the pros/cons of biscuits/butt joints? Should one be used over the other?

Relic, The custom mix of Minwax is a secret mix put together by the guy I bought my wood from. At this time he holds that formula dear to his heart. I probably need to find another finish that I can reproduce.

GaryK, Congrats on your recent accomplishment with the contest. What a great looking box. The different grain patterns in the legs were something I had to consider. I’ll give your suggestion a try. Thank you.

Critterman, I would gladly share any recipe I had with you but unfortunately it wasn’t mixed by me. I know I’ve seen some other great looking finishes her at LJs I’m going to give a try.

I thank all of you for your comments. This really is a great community, isn’t it?

-- Joe Heskett---Illinois

View Keni's profile


42 posts in 4942 days

#13 posted 02-27-2008 02:14 AM

Excellent job! I really like the finish in particular.


-- Williamsport, MD

View Dan'um Style's profile

Dan'um Style

14189 posts in 5041 days

#14 posted 01-17-2009 01:49 AM

nice work … what have you been making lately ?

-- keeping myself entertained ... Humor and fun lubricate the brain

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