A Speedy and Stylish DIY Coffee Table

Tile-topped tables are very popular pieces of furniture because they are not only stylish, but durable and easy to clean.  While they can be expensive to purchase, tile top tables are a perfect DIY project. If this style appeals to you and you have 30 minutes to spare, it is possible to make one quite inexpensively using materials like slate. Or, you can choose a more luxurious top of marble or other stone.

DIY coffee table project with tile on topView in gallery

12”x24” tiles are a great size for making tabletops.  They can be purchased inexpensively and have nice straight edges.  I got this slate 12”x24” tile for about $5.

I chose to make a coffee table, but it’s just as easy to make taller versions of this table. All you have to do is make the legs longer.  Of course, the taller the table, the more careful you have to be that the joints of the table are nice and square.

Whatever height you choose, you can build a  sleek, multi-purpose table that works in any room of the house.

Project Time and cost:

$15 and 30 minutes

Supply List:

All of the materials and tools to make this project can be purchased at Home Depot.

  • Four 2” x 36” balusters for use as legs
  • One 12” x 24” Montauk Gauged Slate Floor and Wall Tile for use as the table top
  • 2” Drywall Screws used to attach the legs together

Tools:

  • Chop saw or circular saw
  • 18 volt cordless drill
  • Glue gun (or construction adhesive)
  • Orbital sander or sandpaper

INSTRUCTIONS:

Used my chop saw to cut the balustersView in gallery

STEP 1:When working with a precut piece, it’s a good idea to measure it for the exact dimensions, which I did. I used my chop saw to cut the balusters into 10 pieces: Two at 23⅝” (the length of the tile) and 8 pieces at 11⅝” (the width of the tile). These may seem like random measurements, but if you measure the tile you’ll find that it comes up a bit shy of 12” x 24”. I used a chop saw because it’s the fastest and easiest way to get a good straight cut. If you don’t have a chop saw, a circular saw will work just as well.

pre-drilled holes before screwingView in gallery

STEP 2: Take a good look at the picture of the table and arrange the wood pieces.  Measure and mark where you want to insert the screws. I pre-drilled holes before screwing the pieces together. The reason for this because is the closer you get to the end of a piece of wood, the more likely it is that a screw will split the wood. As long as the size of the drill bit is comparable to the gauge of the screw, you should be able to avoid this problem.

DIY Table TutorialView in gallery

pre-drilled holes before screwing secondView in gallery

The balusters have a really strong grain, which is aesthetically pleasing, but it can also make it tricky to drill a straight hole. Pay extra attention to the angle at which you hold your drill.

I chose to leave the wood in it’s natural state, but you could stain or paint it — whatever you desire or whatever best fits your decor.

Place the Tile AtopView in gallery

STEP 3: Place the tile atop the assembled baluster legs and you’re finished! I didn’t feel the need to adhere the top to the legs but, if you prefer it to be a single unit, there are a couple options: I would use a hot glue gun because it’s fast and easy. Construction adhesive would be a sturdier hold,  but it’s also pretty messy.

If your table isn’t level and wobbles, you can always sand down one of the legs with an orbital sander or sandpaper to make it stable.

DIY Wood base and Tile on TopView in gallery

The simple arrangement of the wood pieces adds the stability and interest to the table’s design. It’s a far better design than a simpler frame.

DIY Tile Table Vodka DisplayView in gallery

Thrifty and stylish, the piece is functional and a great addition to any space. A taller version could serve as a side table, or a smaller tile piece could make a nice nightstand or occasional table.