Modern Coffee Table

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Project by Todd A. Clippinger posted 03-11-2007 05:23 AM 4619 views 33 times favorited 14 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This piece was originally intended to fit inside the Cooper Entertainment Center as the TV console. The plans for the electronic components changed and so I had to make a new console.

I thought that this piece would do well as a freestanding modern coffee table. I added the black base and then had to address the issue of the unfinished back. Since this piece was intended to go inside the entertainment center, the back would never be seen and it had holes to accommodate component and speaker wires.

My solution was to create a floating back panel. There is a 1/4” black recessed channel and then the finished panel is attached to “float the panel.” The solution turned out great and the clients loved it so much they ordered 5 more pieces to with it. You can see them here.

The case is made of curly maple plywood. I had to veneer the drawer face myself. A relief cut into the face and adding a second handle balanced the drawer visually. It was an awkward size for a single drawer and so I made it look like two.

-- Todd A. Clippinger, Montana,

14 comments so far

View Roger Strautman's profile

Roger Strautman

657 posts in 5470 days

#1 posted 03-11-2007 05:28 AM

Once again you made a very beautiful piece!

-- " All Things At First Appear Difficult"

View Dollarbill's profile


91 posts in 5475 days

#2 posted 03-11-2007 05:37 AM


Where in the world did you find curly maple plywood? Did you have to sell your truck to get it?


-- Make Dust

View Todd A. Clippinger's profile

Todd A. Clippinger

8901 posts in 5436 days

#3 posted 03-11-2007 05:58 AM

I can tell you have a clue. My client’s have a deeper wallet than me. I didn’t pay for it.

-- Todd A. Clippinger, Montana,

View Don's profile


2603 posts in 5514 days

#4 posted 03-11-2007 08:43 AM

Todd, I particularly like this piece because it represents a number of design solutions. Even after you described it, I could swear that was a four drawer unit. Very clean and beautiful. When using wood this lovely, I think it best to keep the design clear – let the wood do the talking.

-- CanuckDon "I just love small wooden boxes!"

View oscorner's profile


4563 posts in 5648 days

#5 posted 03-11-2007 02:27 PM

Those are single drawers! You did a great job making them look like two drawers.

-- Jesus is Lord!

View jockmike2's profile


10635 posts in 5583 days

#6 posted 03-12-2007 04:05 AM

Very nice Todd. Nice lines and color. jockmike

-- (You just have to please the man in the Mirror) Mike from Michigan -

View Diane's profile


546 posts in 5460 days

#7 posted 03-22-2007 06:19 PM

I love this design. I can’t tell that is single drawers either.


View Damian Penney's profile

Damian Penney

1142 posts in 5328 days

#8 posted 06-26-2007 01:55 AM

Very nice indeed, I love the back of it and like the other people have said I’d never have guessed that was a single drawer and the fake double definitely gives the piece balance.

-- I am always doing that which I can not do, in order that I may learn how to do it. - Pablo Picasso

View Napaman's profile


5535 posts in 5414 days

#9 posted 07-08-2007 05:20 AM

just seeing this with the new LJ’s format…beautiful piece…this is still new to me but I really love the curly maple…we need a low entertainment center and that is a knock out…great…

-- Matt--Proud LJ since 2007

View mot's profile


4928 posts in 5373 days

#10 posted 07-08-2007 06:11 AM

Tod! Very nice. I missed this one…I don’t know how, but I did. I really like this. I’m doing an entertainment center in a home theatre below a drop down screen. This piece is going to change my direction. I really like the modern look to it. Thanks for sharing it. I know it’s been posted for awhile, but I find the shear volume of projects on LJ getting overwhelming!

-- You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation. (Plato)

View Rj's profile


1047 posts in 4968 days

#11 posted 06-20-2008 04:46 PM

Your a man with taste this is the style I just love, Modern but not going over board ..
I love Maple & Black together .

-- Rj's Woodworks,San Jose & Weed Ca,

View Alan's profile


443 posts in 4741 days

#12 posted 01-30-2009 09:05 PM

This is great. I’m adding it to my favorites to look back on when it’s time for me to build my TV stand.


-- Alan, Prince George

View yuri's profile


140 posts in 4940 days

#13 posted 01-25-2010 06:42 PM

Beautiful modern piece of furniture.
What kind of finish did you make for maple surfaces?

View Todd A. Clippinger's profile

Todd A. Clippinger

8901 posts in 5436 days

#14 posted 01-25-2010 06:42 PM

Yuri – I used a pre-catalyzed lacquer with a satin sheen.

-- Todd A. Clippinger, Montana,

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