DIY slat side table

If you guys can’t tell, we’re on a roll with the outdoor projects! We are totally gearing up for Spring, and the quickly approaching Summer months! So far we’ve tackled our front porch by installing horizontal slats and railings down our stairs!

Once we finished our front porch, we got started on some outdoor patio furniture so we had somewhere to sit on our new front porch! Our DIY outdoor chairs were such an inexpensive project, and we will definitely be building more of these for the back! Make sure you check out that blog post below which has the material list, tutorial, and cost breakdown!

Our most recent build, as you can tell from the photo at the top of this post is our new DIY wood slat side table to accompany our new DIY chairs! This side table, like our chairs, was so incredibly easy and inexpensive to build! Today I’m going to show you guys how to make your own DIY slat side table for your outdoor or indoor spaces! Ready? Let’s do this!

Ok so first thing you’ll want to do is collect your materials!


Now gather your tool to build this DIY slat table!


Now let’s break down the build! This side table is SO simple! You essentially are going to build two free standing slat squares and then add the top of the table! Here is simplified cut list!

30 cuts @ 20 1/2 in (square slat sides)

12 cuts @ 20 1/8 in (top of table)

2 cuts @ 18 in (table top front and back support)

2 angles for stability support (will include photo)

You’ll get FOUR cuts out of each 1×2 furring strip!

Here are some photos to better help explain this build!

You’ll start out with your 20 1/2 cuts! This will make the frame. As you can see above mine started as a “U” shape. I did this by nailing the top piece to the sides using my nail gun.

I didn’t take as many photos of the first side frame, so let’s jump to the second one that I was able to semi-document!

As you can see from the photo below, my first side frame was completed. Now I’m going to show you how to assemble! Turn your “U” away from you and take TWO scrap pieces of 1×2 to act as your spacer! This will ensure that every 1×2 is evenly spaced on your frame! I assembled the first one standing up, so there were a few discrepancies. My tip is to build the side frames LAYING DOWN on a FLAT surface. Take your time! This is a vital part of the build.

Refer to the photo below for the 1×2 spacers! I inserted one at the top where I was nailing the 1x2s in and one at the open bottom! You’ll want to repeat this process until you get to the last 1×2!

TIP: Make sure you don’t nail your spacer on accident!! It’s a pain to remove the finishing nails from these thin boards! Work slowly and pay attention! 🙂

A few of my cuts were a tiny bit off because we have the original blade on our miter saw and it desperately needs to be replaced! I had to go back and trim a few of my inside slat boards! Avoid this by making your cuts and stacking/re measuring to ensure they’re all the same length!

You’ll notice my small spacing mistake on my first side frame on the bottom right corner! I could’ve gone back and fixed this, but because it was such a pain to remove the nails (damaged ends were almost unavoidable), and it was going to be on the far side underneath and no one was going to see it, I left it.

This is a no judgement zone. Just sharing my mistakes and being honest so you can avoid them! Scot is definitely the more precise builder when it comes to cuts, but I wanted to make this on my own!

OK so here’s how I personally decided to build the top for the table. You can obviously take another spin on this, but I love how it turned out!

I took a 1×2 and slid it through the sides of the side frames all the way across. I nailed it into place from the front and the back of the 1×2 so it didn’t move while I was installing the top pieces! See photo below!

Once the bottom of the table top 1×2 was installed, I added a front piece on the front and back to conceal the ends of the table top 1×2’s! I secured the table top pieces using wood glue as opposed to nails so I had less holes to fill on the top, giving me a more smooth surface!

Here’s a photo of underneath the table where we installed angled supports. You could obviously install this on the front and the back, but since this side table isn’t necessarily holding any kind of significant weight, I opted to just install on the back! Make this angle cut as big or small as you want!

That’s it! Now you have a fully assembled easy and affordable DIY modern wood side slat table for your patio, front porch, or outdoor space! You can’t beat custom furniture! Here are a couple photos of it fully assembled before I painted it!

And now the final styled photos of our new DIY slat side table!!!

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