This DIY end table does double, or even triple, duty on your deck or patio! The top level serves as a side table and the lower level features a built-in planter. When it’s time for a summer barbecue, switch out the flowers for an ice bucket to keep drinks cool!
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Our quest for the ultimate deck is slowly starting to come together. The outdoor sofa and loveseat set I built creates a cozy seating area in the corner, and outdoor rope lights around the perimeter give it just the right ambiance. But what good is all that when there’s nowhere to set your drink?!? This end table provides the perfect solution to two problems in one compact space!
Materials Needed for DIY End Table
- 2 – 1 x 4 cedar boards @ 8 feet
- 3 – 2 x 4 cedar boards @ 8 feet
- 2 ½” exterior pocket hole screws
- 1 ¼” pocket hole screws
- Kreg Jig
- 3 – 1 ½” L angle brackets
- 18” long plastic planter box
- Buy two if you plan to switch out the flowers for an ice bucket occasionally!
- Exterior wood stain
- Miter or circular saw
|1 x 4||2 x 4|
|2 @ 13 ⅛”||2 @ 11”|
|2 @ 14 ¾”||2 @ 10 ¾”|
|2 @ 16 ⅞”||1 @ 14 ⅞”|
|4 @ 20 ½”||1 @ 18 ⅞”|
|2 @ 19”|
|2 @ 22 ¾”|
|4 @ 26 ¼”|
Start by cutting all the pieces listed above. Don’t forget to wear the proper eye protection (you can find my safety glasses recommendations here) and hearing protection! Sand any rough edges before starting assembly.
Assemble the End Table Legs
Drill pocket holes in both ends of each of the 19” 2 x 4 pieces at the 1 ½” board thickness setting.
Then drill pocket holes along one length at the ¾” setting.
Attach these to the 26 ¼” 2 x 4 legs with 2 ½” pocket hole screws. The holes along the long edge should be facing up and will be used to attach the top later.
Repeat the process for drilling pocket holes for the 11” 2 x 4 pieces. Attach them to the outside edge of the end table legs with 2 ½” pocket hole screws.
Attach the other set of legs to the ends of the 11″ pieces. It may be a little tricky to fit your drill inside the frame to attach this piece. I used a right angle drill attachment to get into this tight spot.
The planter side of the end table only needs one pair of legs. Assemble it the same way as before, using the 14 ⅞” piece between the two legs. The 18 7/8″ piece fits between the 10 3/4″ side pieces.
Assemble the End Table Tops
The tops of the end table are made out of 1 x 4’s. Drill two pocket holes into both ends of the 20 ½” pieces. Attach these to the 14 ¾” 1 x 4 pieces with 1 ¼” pocket hole screws, leaving about ¼” between each slat.
Assemble the planter side the same way, but leave a space in the middle that is big enough for the lip of your planter box to rest on top securely. This one was custom fit to this plan. You’ll want to buy two planter boxes if you want to switch out flowers for the ice bucket, unless you like dirt in your ice!
Attach the End Table Tops to Legs
Attach the table tops to their matching frames with 1 ¼” pocket hole screws. One long edge should be flush with the legs, and the other sides should overhang by ¾”.
Now is a good time to paint or stain your end table. I used the same exterior stain as the outdoor sofa and loveseat I built, so the entire set matches perfectly!
Attach Both Sides Together
Stand both halves next to each other on a flat surface with the flush sides together. Check that the planter side is level, then attach it to the upper end table side with 1 ½” L angle brackets.
Fill your planter box with flowers (or ice) and drop it in. The lip of the planter box should rest on the edges of the table top, and can easily be switched out.
The planter box comfortably fits a six pack, so you always have your favorite beverage cold and close at hand.
Or switch out the box with one full of beautiful flowers to enjoy while relaxing on your deck or patio.
I still have another end table and a coffee table to build for our deck, so stay tuned for more woodworking plans! Until then, don’t forget to check out my outdoor loveseat plans too!
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