Photography: Bryan Gardner

Source: Martha Stewart Living, September 2014

Introduction

Sources

McCobb table legs, 16", in Soft Maple, $18; angled-leg cleats, 12", in Soft Maple, $15, tablelegs.com. Vintage décor paint, in Beetle Black, $10 for 8 oz. (available late August); and Vintage décor clear wax, $10 for 8 oz., Martha Stewart Crafts, michaels.com

materials

  • Wood putty and putty knife

  • Birch plywood, 15 by 48 inches

  • Sanding blocks, 180 and 220 grit

  • Décor paint and paintbrush

  • 2 cleats with screws

  • 4 16-inch table legs

  • Dust-free cloths

  • Wax furniture finish

  • Drill with 1/8-inch bit

steps

  1. Using putty knife, fill in any gaps in edges of plywood with wood putty. Let dry. Sand flush with 180-grit sanding block, then soften all hard edges of plywood. Gently sand top with 220-grit sanding block.

  2. Dilute paint by combining 2 parts water and 1 part paint. Brush onto plywood tabletop (all sides), cleats, and table legs. Partially screw legs into cleats to hold them upright; let dry. Add a second coat of paint, if desired; let dry.

  3. Remove dry legs from cleats. With a dust-free cloth, apply wax to all surfaces; rub in (it’s okay if it looks streaky and slightly inconsistent). Let sit overnight. Buff with another cloth.

  4. Place tabletop top-side down on a clean work surface. Center leg cleats widthwise 6 inches in from both ends, and mark holes with a pencil. Drill pilot holes. Reposition brackets and screw them in. Screw in legs.

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