DIY Modern Turned Leg Dining Table

How I built the $3500 dining table of my dreams for less than $500

Has anyone else had this beautiful dining table following them around the internet in ads 🙋🏻‍♀️

I love its playful, oversized take on the classic turned legs of antique furniture, but it’s just not in my budget to spend thousands of dollars on any one object (except for maybe a custom Interior Define sectional 🙈).

For much of my furniture, I thrift vintage or antique or scrounge up something for cheap on Facebook Marketplace. But it’s hard to find a good-looking table that seats 8 comfortably, and I’d have to hire movers to haul it for me anyhow.

Plus, I’ve been itching to try my hand at woodworking for a while now, and the Spring 2022 One Room Challenge seemed like a perfect time to challenge myself.

When I found these turned legs for sale, I knew it was a done deal… I was going to build a dupe*!

*Let me preface this by saying I have some qualms about dupes. If it’s from a massive ecommerce giant that grossly overcharges for low-quality furniture, own it! However, in my case, I built a dupe of a very high-quality piece of furniture created by a reputable business employing hundreds of craftsmen, James+James.

That being said, I’m pretty dang proud of what I made, and for my purposes, taste, and budget, it’s exactly what I needed. And it all started with good ol’ inexpensive #2 pine.

As any woodworker will tell you, the quality of your boards makes all the difference! When you go shopping, check for straightness and flatness and avoid boards with deep knots or holes. If you buy from a big box store like I did, your boards will come with beveled edges, so you’ll need to shave them off or you’ll end up with divots between every board when you laminate the tabletop.

I started by shaving the beveled edges off all of my boards (6 2x8x8 and 5 2x4x8) with my table saw.

This provides a nice crisp edge to laminate boards together flush.

Then, I marked my boards every 6 inches and used a biscuit joiner to cut slots for biscuits that would Tetris the tabletop boards together and prevent buckling as they set up in wood glue and heavy-duty clamps.

PSA: If your wood joints will ever be under tension (like a tabletop or a bench), you need to clamp for 24 hours, not just the amount of time it takes your glue to set!

I ended up joining 5 of the 2x8x8s and 1 of the 2x4x8s to get a total width of ~37 inches, exactly the width of the James+James table.

I could give you a full breakdown of how to build the base and attach the tabletop, but instead, let me direct you to the main resources I used for this build with step-by-step instructions:

Wood conditioner helps fill the pores of the wood before stain to prevent blotchiness.

See the unconditioned board on the bottom? Blotchy.

Here are the base and tabletop after stain!

If you’re into this aged, chalky-looking “unfinished” finish, you could seal with a matte polycrylic.

Legs cost: $275
Lumber cost: ~$100
Fasteners: $30
Total cost: ~$400!

  1. lenchen raeside says:

    beautiful! strong work! I am trying to find the legs in counter height. Do you know a site that I can find them?

  2. Kathleen says:

    I have dreamt of these legs after seeing them online. I just had them delivered and can’t wait to begin. You did a beautiful job!!!

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