Big Ur Farm Table and Bench

Submitted by Ana White on Mon, 02/07/2011 - 19:09
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A substantial leg modern version of the Farmhouse Table.

Today I had a photo shoot for Fresh Home Magazine (make sure you get signed up for your free issue so you'll get to read the article when it publishes) and the set just needed something . . . more than a honeysuckle pink bench . . . . it needed a farm table.  And you know me, if I get a chance to build a farm table, I'm building it!

It just so happens that I was in The Home Depot last week and spotted these gorgeous 4x4 posts, just $12 for a 10' long post.  Some quick math 30" x 4 legs = 10 feet, and I was tracking down an orange apron and begging the associate to cut the post down into exactly 29 7/8" pieces (saw blade takes up the other 1/8").  The associate looked at me like, of course, lady, we do this every day, and made perfect cuts for me.

So I need a farm table, had 4 - 29 7/8" long 4x4 posts . . . you take a guess.  What Farm Table should we build?

Many of our readers have been requesting plans for a table inspired by Crate and Barrel's Big Sur Collection. This is what they would call a win-win-win situation.

Me especially wins  :)  I'm having a hard time NOT moving this table into my teeny dining space or moving my computer and other office mess on top of it.

We had scrap 2x4s leftover (yes, can you believe these are the scrap pieces?) so I used them as a tabletop - thus the breadboard on the end.  Aren't those 4x4s beautiful?  I just sanded the whole table and haven't decided on a finish yet.  For the photo shoot, au natural was best.  What do you suggest?

The plans here will show you how to build a 65" x 35" x 30" dining table, but I'll also give measurements for the bench in this post.  I can't show you more of the table just yet because it's part of the photo shoot, but you get the idea.

The beauty of this table is highly dependent on your access to high quality 4x4 posts.  If you can't find beautiful 4x4 posts at Lowes or Home Depot or Menards, try a specialty hardwood dealer.  Also, for those of you excited about spring being just around the corner, you could use cedar 4x4s and make this an outdoor table.  For water drainage, I suggest spacing the tabletop boards about 1/4" apart, and also cedar boards for the tabletop and supports.

Dimensions are shown above.


Shopping List

1- 10′ long 4×4 Post, cut into 29 7/8″ pieces
10 – 2×4, 8 foot or stud length
4 – 2×2 @ 8 foot long
1 – 2×3 @ 6 foot long
2 1/2″ Screws
3″ Screws
Wood Glue and Finishing Supplies

Cut List

4 – 4×4 Post @ 29 7/8″ (Legs)
6 – 2×2 @ 30″ (Joists)
8 – 2×4 @ 65″ (Tabletop Boards)
2 – 2×4 @ 58″ (Tabletop Side Boards)
2 – 2×3 @ 28″ (End Joists – you could use 2x2s here if you cannot find 2x3s)
2 – 2×2 @ 58″ (Side Aprons)

Tape Measure
Speed Square
Safety Glasses
Hearing Protection
Kreg Jig
Circular Saw
Power Sander
Drill Bit Set


Step 1

Bench mods as shown above.

Step 2


For those of you with a Kreg Jig™, you will want to build your tabletop first (all 10 tabletop boards) with a Kreg Jig™ and then add the supports. For those of you without a Kreg Jig™, the pocket holes will make your joints between the tabletop boards smooth and tight (like mine in the photo) but if you just can’t afford one, you can screw through the supports into the underside of the tabletop boards, minimizing the gaps between the tabletop boards as you go. Use 2 1/2″ screws and glue. For those of you looking for that super smooth tabletop – you could run your 2x4s through a table saw and trim off any rounded edges first but beware that this will change the dimensions of your support boards. I did not run mine through a tablesaw, and think that’s what a farm table is all about – being a little rustic and obviously made of real boards. Predrill all holes.

Step 3

Top Ends

Add the top ends as shown above. Minimize the gap between the tabletop boards and predrill and screw down with 2 1/2″ screws and glue.

Step 4

Side Aprons

Now add the side aprons by screwing to both the tabletop end boards and the joists. Use glue and 2 1/2″ screws. Predrill all holes.

Step 5

Step 6

There should be no exposed holes visible on the outside of the table. I simply sanded my table with 120 grit sandpaper and vacuumed clean. Make sure you stain or seal your table to keep the wood from accepting food or other unwanted stains.


Gina (not verified)

Mon, 02/07/2011 - 19:26

Aww man!!!! This is beautiful, but I've been trying to figure out how to make a TALLER table (counter height, plus). Any suggestions on a taller farmhouse table?

Sandra (not verified)

Mon, 02/07/2011 - 20:19

Ana- That would be awesome. We would love to build a counter top height table!! ;o) BTW You rock! We are working on finishing our first project!

mamma_joy (not verified)

Mon, 02/07/2011 - 20:47

So pretty and I'm pretty sure will beat out the other tables now for our new table! We are wanting a square table and prefer the legs on the outside so that it doesn't limit the seating space between the legs. A couple of questions...Your end looks a little different than the plan (the breadbox piece?). Is there a benefit to one vs. the other or just easier to have the boards extend? And I can't quite picture where the pocket holes go on the legs that you can't see them on the outside. I would have thought they screwed into the aprons but I would think you'd see them? Thanks again for another plan!

Ana White (not verified)

Mon, 02/07/2011 - 21:06

Erin, I'll post a photo for you to look at of the ends. We did the breadboard ends because we had a bunch of 2x4 scraps that were the same length and couldn't just waste them. If you do do the breadboard ends, it'll be easy to modify, just do the ends just like the sides. Hope that makes sense. Ana

Kelly (not verified)

Mon, 02/07/2011 - 23:36

Any chance you could show an actual picture of the finished item similar to the diagram in step 4? I cant quite picture all of the pocket holes :) thanks

Meg (not verified)

Tue, 02/08/2011 - 02:29

We love your furniture since we are always on a budget. I hope to have a corner cabinet plan to share with you soon...complete with used horseshoes:). Where can we get untreated 4x4 posts??? We are in Charlotte, NC and our Blue and Orange stores do not have those.

Matthew (not verified)

Sun, 03/11/2012 - 00:58

The blue store will custom order them for you, but it will cost you. A local lumber store will save you some, but I like to make my own. It takes 2 2X4s wood glue and screws. Take 2 premium 2X4s (not stud grade) cut to length (I like to leave them a little long so I can cut them perfectly even after) place them together so that the grain is cupped together. (should look like this (()) as opposed to this (((( or this ))(( or they will warp and pull apart) Now put wood glue in between and clamp it tight. While it is clamped pre-drill and counter sink 2 deck screws every 12" and at ends on the B side. (careful not to split your lumber) When assembling your piece turn the B side in to hide the screws or out for an industrial look.

rhilborn (not verified)

Tue, 02/08/2011 - 03:15

I'm so excited! I wanted the farmhouse table look but with a smooth table top. I had already learned to join a table top with pocket holes when building Clara's play table and thought maybe I could try the same with the farmhouse. Is there an easy modification I can do so that the legs can be removed for moving? We're in the Army and we're looking at 2 moves by next Christmas:). I know that often the modifications involve using lag bolts instead of screws, is that applicable here? Would my legs be of sufficient heft to handle that many bolts or would I use fewer? I look forward to seeing this project in the magazine:).

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