Barn Door Coffee Table

After getting a few furniture projects under my tool belt, a client approached me to design and build a coffee table for her using a fantastic old barn door that she had bought from a salvage yard. It was truly a beautiful, historic, perfectly weathered door. I couldn’t wait to get started. Yep, I was a teeny bit nervous… she had trusted me with her special door and I wasn’t totally sure how I was going to make this happen. Fueled by her faith in my creativity and skills, and my desire to transform this piece of history into a functional, unique furnishing, I dove in.

The door itself would be the top, which just needed to be scrubbed and cleaned of years of dirt and debris. I did have to cut it down to a reasonable size, because it was pretty huge. I then sealed it with a matte varnish, to be sure any potential lead paint and rust on the hardware was safely contained under the varnish and wouldn’t chip off. Now I just had to come up with the base and four short pedestal legs to put them together. I was able to find some pretty, unfinished, chunky, hardwood turned legs. For the base I just purchased a large piece of unfinished 3/4” oak plywood. The tricky part was distressing the legs and base to appropriately match the top. It took some trial-and-error, a bunch of glue, paint and sand paper, but it finally came together.

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The Barn Door Coffee Table Project

During the process I decided to make a simple, overview instructional video to post on YouTube and for my design website. It’s far from polished, and doesn’t go into super detail, but you can get the gist of how I made it all come together. Please forgive the distracting background – wow, our garage needs a good clean out!

 

Here are a few of the materials that I used in the process, as well.

The big point I want to drive home is, don’t be afraid to dive in to these sorts of projects. You get better with every one, you learn a lot, and you get more confidant in tackling your future awesome DIY adventures! So go for it!!

 

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Save Me! ~ Salvaged Wood Furniture & Design

In middle school I really enjoyed shop class. I loved working with wood, in particular.  I made a beautiful bowl using the lathe and enjoyed every bit of the process. Fast forward to about a year ago. I was inspired to get my hands dirty and work with wood again. I decided to build a coffee table using salvaged historic home doors. Fortunately, I live in an area chock full of old stuff pulled out of barns, homes, you name it. I bought a couple of wonderful, dirty, weathered doors and went to work in my garage. I pretty much had NO knowledge of how to transform these doors into a beautiful, functional coffee table, but I dove in. After quite a bit of trial and error, lots of mistakes, a whole bunch of mess, I had a great table! Yay!

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Historic Home Salvaged Door Coffee Table

It was soooo satisfying and fun and creative… I was quickly thinking about my next carpentry project.

It was soooo satisfying and fun and creative… I was quickly thinking about my next carpentry project.

I began brainstorming what other wood could I salvage to create my next design. No further did I need to look but outside my kitchen window. On the back of our property stood the kids wood swing set that only a few years ago, it seems, my husband and a friend spent the night building for our kids. Sadly, it was now neglected and my husband was bothering me to remove it from the yard. I just couldn’t part with it. It occurred to me, there was a huge pile of wood that of which I just couldn’t part. Could I re-purpose it for my next furniture project? I went out there and started strategically removing pieces of wood that I felt had potential. I’m pretty darn sure my neighbors thought I was a bit crazy, out there suited in goggles, work boots, cammo pants and a power saw. BUT, I salvaged some great stuff and went to work creating a design for another coffee table. I used only the wood from the swing set, some basic supplies (nails, stain, varnish, etc) and some metal plumbing supplies. The design took a little engineering and creativity, but the pieces I salvaged really worked out well. I prettied up the steel plumbing pipes with some black paint and embellished them with gold accents. I love, love, love the table I created. Not only do I love the design & look of the table, but also, now I can keep a piece of my children’s’ childhood in my house forever!

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Salvaged Swing Set Wood Coffee Table

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