This kiddies desk or storage table and chairs is actually quite simple to make and looks stunning once painted with Rust-Oleum in shades of blue. The desk lid lifts up and offers a nice storage space for toys or craft and painting supplies. - See more at:
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Step 1:

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1 X 16mm mdf  250 x 500mm - chair back  
1 x 16mm mdf  218 x 250mm - chair front  
2 x 16mm mdf  250 x 250mm - chair top/bottom  
2 x 16mm mdf    50 x 250mm - chair supports  
1 x 16mm mdf  400 x 600mm - table top  
1 x 16mm mdf  300 x 600mm - table base  
2 x 16mm mdf  284 x 600mm - table front/back  
2 x 16mm mdf  284 x 268mm - table sides  

3,5 x 30mm wood screws
16mm wood screws
Wood glue
Wood filler
4 legs
120-, 240-grit sanding pads
400-grit sandpaper
Rust-Oleum 2X in two colours
Piano hinge
Drill/Driver plus assorted bits
Countersink bit
Orbital sander
Tape measure and pencil
Optional: Corner clamps

Step 2:

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Assemble chair

At the front of the top and bottom sections pre-drill two 2mm pilot holes and countersink.

Drill the holes 30mm from each edge.

On the top and bottom of the front sections measure in 30mm from the edges and drill pilot holes.

Step 3:

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If you are working on your own corner clamps come in handy for holding the sections together.

Place the front panel between the top and bottom and drive screws through the pre-drilled holes.

Make sure the screw head is below the surface, as you will fill this with wood filler later on to conceal.

Step 4:

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On the back section measure and make a line at 16mm, 235mm and 250mm. Use these guides to pre-drill 2mm pilot holes and countersink.

Place the back section on top of the assembled seat section and drive screws through the back. Again, make sure that the screw heads are below the surface for filling in later on.
dezine (author) 11 months ago

Just to let you know, the table and chairs were donated to a pre-school much in need of furniture for their toddlers. It has been in use now for over a year and the only change I would make would be to round-off the corners a bit more. I used 16mm MDF and it has stood up very well to the everyday demands of young children. But I do agree with a slow-closing hinge mounted on this lid.

RnP11 months ago

First of all, the design is simple yet interesting.

MDF is fine for furniture, I have plenty of MDF cabinets here in my office. They are flat, easy to install and much cheaper than hard wood plus sustainable.

However, being constructive, I think the table is fine but a slow closer like 2blonde suggested is a good idea.

But the chairs, with "the greatest destruction force on earth", our kids, these chairs are not good enough. The force, if coming from top down, the chairs could last some time but it they lean on the chair's back, the force comes from the front, the chair would collapse. The screws will not be able to hold the pieces together as they will pull out. MDF is too soft for screw, lock kits are a bit better. Then, it is a real threat to put into consideration.

One more thing is MDF is not water resistant, so don't let water anywhere near them or they will just swell like a piece of bread soaking in water.

2blonde1 year ago

This is a great instructable. My only addition would be to use child safe slow closing safety hinges on the inside rather than a strip of material or rope. That way it would close slowly and little hands wouldn't get smashed when you close the lid.

mimbrogno11 year ago
How long are the legs? Thx
dezine (author)  mimbrogno11 year ago
10cm long
dezine (author)  mimbrogno11 year ago
100mm in length.
blkhawk1 year ago
It looks that MDF has been used in this project. It is not a recommended material to build furniture.
dezine (author)  blkhawk1 year ago
There's absolutely no reason why you cannot use MDF. Today's policy for manufacturing formaldehyde-free product means it is safe. And since MDF is manufactured from pulp fibers, it's also fairly sustainable.
blkhawk dezine1 year ago
The reason MDF is not recommended for building furniture is that it does not take screws very well. I never brought up the safety issue, that was someone else.
dezine (author)  blkhawk1 year ago
If you drill pilot holes MDF is stronger than most other materials.
Can you suggest some alternatives?
Real wood boards are your best choice.
MAF4051 year ago
Good idea ..But wood MDF weak to bear to have a chair.
dezine (author)  MAF4051 year ago
Definitely not. The design of the chair is extremely strong.
I really like the idea of this storage table. In school, we used to have it for the art and craft room where art students are able to store all of their art tools and papers inside without disturbing the surface of the table which also acts as their workspace. An additional feature of this DIY table and chair is the fact that it is customizable which makes it even more practical.
So many pointy edges for a child's table!
+1 Maybe the edges should be rounded with a router. I would also add some padding on the chairs.
Actually MDF is safe once it is built,. The only time is it is toxic is when it is being machined. It gives off formaldehyde and carcinogens in high concentrations. But once it has been finished it is completely safe. Pretty much the only caution is when building a project; When cutting and sanding a mask should be worn and all cut edges should be sealed. With minor safety precautions medium density fibreboard will make amazing furniture and will outlast particle board.