A step-by-step tutorial to make a DIY Laptop Sofa table for a Christmas gift this year or maybe just for yourself.
If you’re anything like me, I have my laptop all the time while I am sitting on the couch watching TV. A couple of years ago, I saw the idea of a laptop desk for a couch and I loved it! I wanted one but I am too cheap to purchase one so why not make my own? I really wanted to try my hand at metal but in the end, I decided to make the whole laptop table out of wood. This post is all about how to build a DIY laptop sofa table. Plus this would be the perfect gift for really anyone, it’s my Christmas gift to myself!
For this holiday season I have something very special for you, Deck the Home Blog Hop! The Deck the Home Blog Hop is a 5-week series of amazing Christmas DIY and home project from 26 DIY bloggers.
Each week there is a new theme and this week’s theme is Christmas gift ideas. I will be sharing my project below but after the tutorial, there is a link-up of all the Deck the Home Door Decor project for the week, so be sure to check those out!
Just in case you missed one of my other Deck the Home blog hop projects!
Now back to the current project.
DIY LAPTOP SOFA TABLE
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If you happen to like the look of this table, I am basing my design from the Metal Edge Laptop Desk from World Market, so you can purchase a similar one there.
The size of the laptop desk is 20″W x 14″D x 25-1/2″T
STEP 1: cut the wood
The first thing you must do is cut the wood. Here is the cut list:
- 2″x2″ boards = 24″, 24″, 12″, 12″, 16″, & 16″
- 2″x4″ or 1″x4″ boards = 20″, 20″, 20″, & 20″
STEP 2: add Kreg Jig pockets
Once all the wood is cut its time to add some pockets to be able to attach the boards together.
- three of the 2″x4″ (or 1″x4″) boards
- Place three pockets on each board (close to the ends and middle).
- both of the 16″ boards
- There will be four pockets on each board. Place two pockets on one side at both ends. Then on the opposite side of the board, place two more at the ends.
- both of the 12″ boards
- Place one pocket at one end of each board
STEP 3: sand the wood
After the pockets are added, sand all the boards with #220 grit sandpaper.
TIP: You want the boards to be very smooth, so take your time.
STEP 4: build the table top
Now that everything is cut and sanded, its time to build the top of the laptop table. Take two 20″ boards that have pockets on them.
Place them on a flat surface with the pockets facing the same direction. Align the ends of the boards and clamp them together.
TIP: Because the boards are on a flat surface, press down on the boards while clamping to mark sure the boards will be level.
Once the boards are clamped and both ends are aligned, take the 2-1/2″ screws (1-1/4″ if you are using a 1″x4″ board) and attach the two boards together with the screws.
Add the two other 20″ boards the same way until you are left with your tabletop.
TIP: If your clamps are not big enough to clamp all the boards together, use a wall!
Now that the top is assembled, sand the wood to make sure you have a smooth top plus round the edges.
When you are happy with the smoothness of the top (it will not be completely bump-free) add the wood finish you want. This could be a stain or just Tung Oil to help protect your wood. I wanted a natural look so I just applied Tung Oil to the top.
STEP 5: build the frame of the table
Start with the 12″ boards, 24″ boards, and two 3″ corner braces. Take a 24″ board and place it on a flat surface. Place a 12″ board at one end of the board, so that the two boards together are forming an “L”. Use a clamp to hold the boards in place.
SIDE NOTE: Have the pocket on the 12″ board be at the bottom of the “L”. Mine is on the side but the bottom would have been a better placement.
TIP: It’s a great idea to use wood glue!
Next place the corner brace on the inside of the “L”. Center the bracket then pre-drill a 1/8″ hole where each screw will be placed.
After, attach the brace with the screws provided. Then place a 2-1/2″ screw into the pocket of the 12″ boards.
TIP: You don’t want to split the boards, adjust your drills dial so its set somewhere between 6-9 while installing the screws.
Complete this process again for the other two boards and brace. This is the sides of the frame.
Now its time to install the last two boards to finish the frame. Place one of the sides on a flat surface. Take one of the 16″ boards and place glue on the bottom end.
Place this end on top of one end of the side frame, “L”. Clamp the two boards together.
Attach the boards together with the 2-1/2″ screws, using the pockets. There are two on each side of the 16″ board.
When this board is attached, install the other 16″ board the same way but at the other end of the “L”.
Now take the other side piece, “L”, and place it on a flat surface. Place glue on both ends of the 16″ boards.
Then place this part of the frame onto the other side piece (you just placed the side pieces on a flat surface).
SIDE NOTE: Flip the side piece over if the boards are not lining up.
Clamp each 16″ board to the side pieces, making sure the ends are aligned. Then attach the boards together using the 2-1/2″ screw. You will be placing two screws on each 16″ board.
Now that the frame is assembled, its time to add the 6″ corner brace to the frame. Sit the frame so that the longer side is on a flat surface.
Place a brace on one side of the frame. Use a scrap board to make sure the brace will be aligned with the frame and table top. Once everything is aligned, mark where the three screws will be drilled.
Then with a 1/8″ drill bit, pre-drill holes for the screws on the marked spots. After drilling holes, attach the brace using the 1″ screws.
STEP 6: painting the frame
Before painting the frame it needs to be prepped. The pockets holes need to be filled in with plugs. To do this, place wood glue inside the pocket holes and some glue on the plug. Then insert the plug into the pocket. The plug should go in smoothly, sometimes a screw is not drilled in far enough.
Install a plug for each pocket hole and allow the glue to dry completely before moving on.
Next take spackling paste with a putty knife and apply it to where the plugs were just installed. This is to give you a seamless finish.
SIDE NOTE: If you are not painting the frame, you will want to use a wood filler instead.
Let the spackling paste dry completely before moving to the next step.
Once everything is dry, sand all the wood again with a #220 grit sandpaper. Just like the table top, you want the wood smooth.
After sanding wipe the frame with a cloth to remove the dust. Then place the frame on an old sheet, cardboard, or newspaper so you can spray paint it.
Using the spray grip tool, paint the frame with a can of black spray paint. Remember you want smooth LIGHT coats of paint, meaning you will have to apply at least two coats of paint.
SIDE NOTE: Follow the instructions on the can for dry times before applying more coats.
Once you are happy with the paint coverage on the frame, let it sit for at least 2 hours before moving to the final step.
STEP 7: attaching the top and frame together
Now its time to bring the whole project together. Place the table top, pocket holes facing up, on a clean flat surface. Then sit the 6″ braces of the frame onto the table top.
Align the frame, so that the sides are spaced evenly, and the back has that same space. Mark the brace screws holes and pre-drill a 1/8″ hole into each mark, there will be six.
Then attach the brace to the table top using the 1″ metal to wood screw.
If you want, you can add felt furniture pads to the bottom of the table to help it move easier.
Now the laptop table is complete! Go try out your laptop desk at your favorite chair or couch.
I hope you enjoyed the tutorial and now you have a solution for using your computer on the couch. This could be a great Christmas gift or perfect for yourself.