Build a sweet little desk for your favorite 3 - 10 year old. This is a durable and pretty design that can be passed down from your kids to grandkids.
You can see more build photos and download the printable build plans here: https://abbottsathome.com/diy-kids-desk-storage-plans/
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Step 1: Build a 2x2 Frame
Start by constructing a 2x2 desk frame with pocket holes. 3 identical frames for the sides and middle can then be connected with more pocket hole rails. I always use wood glue with my pocket holes too.
Step 2: Add Panels and Drawer Bottoms
Insert 8 panels around the outside of the desk and 1 in the lower middle, where the chair will be. The panels are framed in with 1/2" x 3/4" moulding on one side and Cove Moulding on the other. The Panels can either be 1/4" plywood, Lauan, or Beadboard.
I went with framing in the plywood with 1/2" x 3/4" moulding over 1/2" or 3/4" plywood for 3 reasons. I like this look, it keeps the desk lighter, and pocket holes on the panels would have been extra work trying to keep everything lined up and filling in the holes and gaps around the edges.
Two 1/4" plywood drawer bottoms are framed in with 1/2" x 3/4" moulding too. Keep them flush with the bottom of the drawer opening.
Step 3: Add Decorative Trim
I used 2 1/4" Door Casing as base moulding, Panel Moulding around the middle, then Cap Moulding along the top edge of the desk, using wood glue and my brad nailer to install.
Then fill in all nail holes and gaps with wood filler. Once dry, sand smooth and clean away all dust with a vaccum and/or slightly damp cloth.
Step 4: Install Drawers and Finish
I built Inset Drawers with a 1/2" plywood frame, 1/4" bottom, and 3/4" Plywood Face. The top is 3/4" Birch Plywood. I finished the edges on the Face and Top with Edge Banding.
When I'm using Bottom Mounted Euro Slides, I tend to construct the drawers with a 1/4" bottom that is glued and nailed on because the slides carry the weight of the drawer. If I used Side-Mounted Slides, I would have gone with an inset 1/2" plywood bottom on the drawers.
I finished the desk with Magnolia Homes by Kilz paint in Eggshell and Watco Medium Walnut Danish Oil on the top.
You can see the full build and finish details on my site. Printable plans can be downloaded too.