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DIY Serena + Lily Inspired Coffee Table

This is part 1 in a 2 part series. Sharing the tables that inspired my latest furniture project and how the coffee table project is taking shape.

I have been slowing giving our living room a refresh this year. It has been a bit of a snowball project as the projects and furniture swaps keep mounting, but as a result it is truly turning into the living room of my dreams and it is so neat to see my true style come to life.

As is the case with most rooms in my home, I have big and expensive design dreams, but a fraction of the budget to bring it to life. But I’m not about to let a small budget keep me from having the beautiful home I’ve dreamed of. So I decided what any regular ole SAHM of 4 little kids would do…I’ll build it myself!

Here’s the two coffee tables that have inspired my latest furniture building project.

Both of these coffee tables are from Serena and Lily and both fall into the price range just over $2K. With 4 young kids at home I just cannot justify paying that price and the more I looked at the design the more I realized I can totally do this!

I went right to my Lowe’s app and got to ordering. I took a gamble and went ahead and purchased the lumber online without looking. I know this is a huge risk and wouldn’t recommend it, but it felt like a safer bet than bringing all 4 kids in the store with me.

Supplies to purchase for Coffee Table:

  • (1) sheet of sanded plywood
  • (4) 1x3x8 whitewood board
  • (2) 3x3x3 poplar
  • (1) box of 1 1/4″ pocket hole screws

These items have totaled $176.

supplies for the coffee table project
Click image to shop for supplies – see disclosures regarding affiliate links

Other items needed:

I did not have to purchase these as I already had them on hand.

  • Kreg Jig
  • Circular Saw
  • Accucut
  • Miter Saw
  • Sander
  • Sandpaper
  • Drill
  • Jigsaw
  • Bondo
  • Floetrol – to create the grasscloth look with paint
  • Primer
  • Paint
  • Paint Brush

Steps to Build Coffee Table

cut 1x3s and 3x3s to size

Cut 1×3 and 3x3s down to size. I wanted my table to be 47″ square and about 17.5″ high. You can tweak these dimensions to your desired size. Because the 3x3s are 2.5″ in width I subtracted 5″ from the length of the 1x3s and cut them each 42.”

Create pocket holes on both sides of 1x3s. These you will join to the 3x3s.

attach 1x3s to 3x3s

Make sure the boards are lined up flush. Once the screw attaches to the joining board it can be hard to correct. Some people prefer to use joinery clamps, however I prefer the old fashioned line up and muscle them together method!

assemble frame

Here is what your frame will look like when the 1x3s and 3x3s are assembled. It’ll be nice and sturdy and now you will be ready to add the inserts for the top and bottom.

Rip the 3/4″ plywood down to size. As I mentioned before, mine is 47″ square. I used the KregJig Accucut to ensure my line was straight and precise which can sometimes be a challenge with a circular saw.

drill pocket holes in plywood

Add pocket holes to the plywood. I added 8 pocket holes, 4 sets of 2 holes to each side. These will screw into the 1x3s.

If you want to make your coffee table more like the Mercer (the first inspiration image), I would go ahead and add your caning to the top and paint the frame white before proceeding to this step.

Attach plywood top and bottom to sides

Place frame on top of plywood and inset the plywood. Add pocket hole screws and attach the plywood to the 1x3s. Be careful the boards are nice and flush together for a smooth transition. Repeat for the bottom.

Cut 1x2s and drill pocket holes to create a support for under the plywood. The 1x2s will attach to the 1×3 side pieces.

adding supports to coffee table

Coffee Table Reveal – Part 1

The table is built! Here is how it turned out, now we are on to paint! I will be doing a Faux Grasscloth Painting Technique. I have never done this before so it will be interesting to see how it turns out!

Coffee Table part 1 reveal
Coffee Table part 1 reveal
Coffee Table part 1 reveal

More DIY Tips

Did you try this? Tag me on social and let me know how it went! @fraicheandco

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