Build your own outdoor coffee table. This DIY square wood coffee table or ottoman woodworking plan features a cross-brace wood X base, built with either pocket hole joinery or mortise and tenon joints.
By popular request, I’ve put together a woodworking plan inspired by this piece (no longer available in stores) so you can build your own DIY outdoor coffee table.
DIY Square Outdoor Coffee Table
The original outdoor coffee table has a stone top. To recreate the look, you’ll need to find a 34″ x 34″ stone piece or make the top from an alternate material. (See more ideas at the bottom of the post.)
You could use wood planks instead or a sheet of plywood or other solid surface (which could then be painted like zinc or marble or given some creative treatment like any of these DIY countertops, appropriately sealed for outdoors).
See more DIY table top ideas at the bottom of this post.
You might also like: Build an Outdoor Coffee Table with Drink Cooler Trough
How to Build an Indoor or Outdoor Wood Coffee Table Base
The outdoor coffee table woodworking plan includes 2 options to build the X base for the table: complex (for advanced builders) and simple (for beginning builders).
The simple version of the wood coffee table base is a little more “chunky” than the original. It uses lumber that is readily available at the home improvement store, with pocket hole joinery. Recommended for advanced beginner builders.
The complex version of the coffee table base more closely matches the original inspiration table dimensions and construction. It is built using mortise and tenon joints and rough cut wood (dimensions actual 2″ x 2″ and 1″ x 2″) which you’ll have to purchase at a wood distribution store. Because it is more complex, this version is recommended for more advanced builders who are already familiar with cutting mortise and tenon joints as well as lap joints.
What size is a square coffee table?
DIY Outdoor Coffee Table with X Base Materials
Click here to purchase the woodworking plan with cut list and assembly instructions.
Simple Pocket Hole Joint Version – Beginner
Estimated lumber cost: $22
- 1 – 4″ x 4″ x 8′ post (actual 3 1/2″ x 3 1/2″)
- 6 – 2″ x 3″ x 8′ boards (actual 1 1/2″ x 2 1/2″)
- 2 1/2″ pocket screws
- wood glue
- 34″ x 34″ top
- Stain/top coat
Complex Mortise and Tenon Joint Version – Advanced
Estimated lumber cost: varies by region and species of wood
- 1 – 2″ x 2″ x 8′ board (actually 2″ x 2″)
- 8 – 1″ x 2″ x 8′ boards (actually 1″ x 2″)
- 1 1/2″ pocket screws
- 1″, 2″ brad nails
- wood glue
- 34″ x 34″ top
- Stain/top coat
You might also like: Build an Octagon/Round Outdoor Coffee Table with Lattice Base
DIY Coffee Table Stone Table Top Ideas
After building the wood table base, add a 34″ x 34″ top. Since purchasing a slab of stone can be pricy, here are a few ideas of alternate materials to the stone:
- Use 2″x 6″ or 2″ x 8″ boards to create the planked look, like this octagon/round coffee table
- Pour your own concrete table top
- Build a wood frame and tile top (similar to this)
- Faux paint a stone tabletop, such as Faux Zinc or Faux Marble
- Use a countertop painting kit for a different faux stone tabletop look
- Create a metal wrapped table top
**Note that the table base may need additional reinforcement for a particularly heavy table top, such as concrete.
How to Weatherproof an Outdoor Wood Coffee Table
After building the base, you’ll want to make sure to give it some weather protection. Depending on the harshness of the elements in your area, a paint or stain meant for outdoors might suffice.
For extra protection, we recommend using a clear coat (like the drink cooler patio table) or spar varnish (like the outdoor sectional sofa). You could also try using a wood-penetrating sealer like the one used on these DIY wood countertops.
More DIY outdoor tables to build:
- Octagon/Round Outdoor Coffee Table with Lattice Wood Base
- Patio Table with Built-In Drink Coolers
- Outdoor Coffee Table with Drink Trough or Planter
- Bucket Base Outdoor Coffee Table
- Build an X-Base Table with Concrete Top
- Build a drop-down outdoor buffet table
- Build a wood slab coffee table
For more build plans check out Hertoolbelt:
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Published May 15 2015 // Updated Mar 12 2020