Build It

DIY Coffee Table for $8 in Lumber

People are often getting rid of mirrors or pieces of glass for cheap or free. I had a piece of glass that came on top of an old coffee table that I took the legs from to turn into a console. See that project here.

I almost didn’t take the glass when I bought the coffee table, but I’m so glad I did. I’ve been wanting to make a coffee table with a cube-like base for awhile now, and realized that I could use this piece of glass as the top.


  • Glass top
  • Four 2″ x 2″ x 8′
  • Paint
  • Bumpers
  • Wood Glue
  • Kreg Jig and Screws


The measurements will differ depending on the size of your glass top. It helps to sketch out and label the lengths of each piece. Before you cut, keep reading through the next step to make sure you’re making the right sized cuts.

The two longer lengths make up the top and bottom squares of the table and the shortest pieces are the four legs. After you cut, lay the longer boards on the glass to make sure that your dimensions are correct. Sand and wipe down.

Make sure boards fit perfectly on the glass


I built the top and bottom squares first, not thinking ahead. When you do it this way, you end up seeing the pocket holes on the legs.

Visible pocket holes on legs

If you are building a table where you are just building a square top with four legs (not have a square on the floor as well), you are fine to do it this way, because the pocket holes will be towards the top of your table and not overly visible. BUT, when you’re building a square-based prism shape, you need to pay attention to where your pocket holes are. The way you SHOULD build this kind of table is by making the right and left rectangles first, then connecting the 4 longest boards at the end.

Build this rectangular section first. Make 2, then connect the 2.

Don’t forget to use wood glue at the joints. I’ve always had amazing results with the Elmer’s wood glue.

Drilling pocket holes and screwing in the screws is another part where kids can help. I love when they ask to help…it teaches them skills that they’ll need when they’re adults.


Sand down all corner areas to make them flush with each other. Fill in any spaces or holes with caulking.

I had to fill the pocket holes on the legs, so I used pocket hole plugs and sanded them down. Just in case you ever find yourself in this situation…

Or, anytime you have a project where your pocket holes will show, you can fix that using these plugs.

Pocket hole plugs on lower board



I wanted to use mirror effect spray paint. Since spray paint is so much more expensive than regular paint, I had the goal of only using 1 can of it. To help with this, I painted the whole thing gray first, using a brush and roller. This helps with coverage. The technique I use to keep the paint flat and without brush strokes is explained in my refinished accent table post.

I only did one coat, then applied the spray paint.

I don’t love Valspar spray paint, but Rustoleum didn’t have a mirror-like spray paint in the hardware store I went to. I just went to Amazon and saw that they actually do have a spray paint by Rustoleum. Really wish I would’ve known this existed, I’d have ordered it and waited. Why? Every time I use Valspar I have to be so so careful to not get drips; Rustoleum just goes on more smoothly and is much easier to use. 

Two coats of spray paint


This is sooooo much easier than applying any kind of poly to protect. I use it on so many things. Rustoleum is my favorite spray paint brand by far.



I wasn’t sure what I’d find in terms of something to put between the wood and glass. I went to the section of the hardware store that has furniture bumpers and found these square ones.

They have round ones, too, but I felt like these were perfect for a square-shaped table. They are stickers, so just stick them onto the wood, then center the glass, clean it, and you’re done!

Here is the finished product…

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  1. Your DIY coffee table looks awesome. That is so cool you built it totally from scratch, and even got the kids involved. Thanks for sharing your DIY project at the #HomeMattersParty

  2. Beautiful!! as I mentioned on your dining table post, we also built a coffee table using pocket tool (which we will be sharing later). It has glass panels that we found at the curbside. Someone just got rid of them 🙂

  3. Another great project! Thanks for sharing with SYC. I’m sure it’s not intentional, but I don’t see Share Your Cup on your link party list.

  4. I have two stained glass pieces that I’d like to do something similar with, maybe make a set of matching tables. Thanks for the great idea and step-by-step. Love the colors. From Dare to Share.

    1. Thanks Amy! Every time I’m working on anything I get: “Can I paint?” “Can I help you?” “Can I do that part?” I say no to the more complicated things, but anytime there’s something they are able to do I love watching them learn to build, stain and paint.

  5. I’ve been eWa tong to invest in a Keegan jig for a while, and now I have a perfect tutorial for my beginner project! Thanks for sharing at Fridays Furniture Fix, pinning this for later!

    1. A Kreg Jig allows you to make pocket holes so you can make perpendicular connections more easily. Instead of the Kreg Jig, you could use a countersinking drill bit (it’s just like drilling a hole, but makes it so you can put the screws in deeper into the wood so they can be hidden), then cover the holes with wood filler.

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