Schoolhouse Desk Single Pedestal

Submitted by Ana White on Tue, 07/23/2013 - 11:54
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Free DIY plans to make a schoolhouse style desk!

I know you don't want too ....  but you are, aren't you?

Summer's winding down, and I'm already thinking about our big girl going off to 1st grade.  It's almost back to school time.

Sad, I know.  These summers are just too darn short.

My friend Jaime from That's My Letter just moved into a new home, and one of her first projects to tackle is a craft/study space for her three children.  Going back to school is alot easier when you are organized, isn't it? 

I'm so excited that Jaime asked me to draw up plans for her!!! 

Didn't these desks turn out amazing?

Jaime built three desks, one for each of her kids.

We've got you covered with the plans following, but first, please take a second to check out lots more photos and step by step building details from Jaime at That's My Letter.

Thank you Jaime!

Plans folllow!

XO Ana

Dimensions shown above


Shopping List

16” wide project panel 48” long for single desk (desktop)
1 set 14” white bottom corner mount euro drawer slides
2 knobs or handles
1 set inset hinges for frameless (euro style) cabinets)

For each pedestal, approximately 1/2 sheet 13” plywood, ripped into strips 15 1/2” wide (you may need to purchase a whole sheet to get the cuts)
1 - 1x2 @ 14 1/2” long
1 - 2x2 @ 8 feet long
1 - 1x6 @ 6 feet long
1 - 1x8 @ 14 1/2” long (1x8 is expected to be 7 1/4" wide)
1/4 sheet of 1/4” plywood

For end leg, you’ll need an extra 2x2

Common Materials
Cut List

2 - 3/4” plywood 15 1/2” x 25 1/2”
2 - 3/4” plywood 15 1/2” x 14 1/2”
1 - 1x2 @ 14 1/2”
4 - 2x2 @ 3 3/4”
2 - 2x2 @ 12 1/2”
2 - 2x2 @ 13”

2 - 1x6 @ 12”
2 - 1x6 @ 14 1/2”
1 - 1/4” plywood @ 13 1/2” x 14 1/2”
1 - 1x8 @ 14 1/4”

1 - 3/4” plywood @ 15 1/2” x 14 1/4”
For Shelves, use plywood pieces 14 1/2” x 14 1/2”

1/4” plywood 16” x 25 1/2”

2 - 2x2 @ 12 1/2”
2 - 2x2 @ 29 1/4”

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

Please read through the entire plan and all comments before beginning this project. It is also advisable to review the Getting Started Section. Take all necessary precautions to build safely and smartly. Work on a clean level surface, free of imperfections or debris. Always use straight boards. Check for square after each step. Always predrill holes before attaching with screws. Use glue with finish nails for a stronger hold. Wipe excess glue off bare wood for stained projects, as dried glue will not take stain. Be safe, have fun, and ask for help if you need it. Good luck!


Step 1

Build the basic box out of the 3/4" plywood pieces.

Step 2

Attach the trim for between the door area and drawer area -

Step 3

Build the base sepertely, then attach to bottom of the pedestal.

Step 4

Measure the drawer area and read instructions included with your drawer slides. Build drawer to fit your cabinet and drawer slide clearances (as shown for 1/2" drawer slide clearances).

Step 5

Step 6

Attach drawer face, with an even 1/8" gap around all sides of drawer face.

Step 7

Attach door to base with inset hinges.

Step 8

Attach back to back, use glue and 1 1/4" finish nails.

Step 9

Build the support leg as shown in diagram.

Step 10

Attach tabletops - for wider tabletops, the back can extend past the pedestals.

Step 11

Jaime also added a strip of wood to the inside of the door to act as a door stop.

Finishing Instructions
Preparation Instructions
Fill all holes with wood filler and let dry. Apply additional coats of wood filler as needed. When wood filler is completely dry, sand the project in the direction of the wood grain with 120 grit sandpaper. Vacuum sanded project to remove sanding residue. Remove all sanding residue on work surfaces as well. Wipe project clean with damp cloth.

It is always recommended to apply a test coat on a hidden area or scrap piece to ensure color evenness and adhesion. Use primer or wood conditioner as needed.


Pam the Goatherd

Tue, 07/23/2013 - 17:13

I like the simplicity of this! My daughter, who is moving back to the US after spending the past year living in London, England, was just saying that she needs a new desk. This might be just the thing she is looking for.


Wed, 07/01/2015 - 04:49

I love the desk and the colors are perfect. I bought my son an old school wooden desk with the chair attached for his room from a flea market before my DIY days. I had someone else revive it and restain it. I could have done it myself. Your work is inspiring. It looks fabulous and was well worth saving. I hope your niece is enjoying it.

Regards, expert writer from


Tue, 07/23/2013 - 20:08

This is just like what I am in the middle of designing for our kids to use. The space I'm working with is about 3.4m (~11 feet) and I was going to make the desk about 600mm deep (~23.5in) and 750mm high (29.5in). I'm thinking of making the support cabinets a bit wider and maybe incorporating some cubbies. I'll definitely be able to grab some ideas from this plan. Thanks!

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