Frugal Farmhouse Dining Table




We came home from overseas and built a house. With no furniture, and no money to buy new stuff for a whole new house, here's what we did for our dining room. Repurposed barnwood, ceiling planks, scraps of lumber, a mattress topper and some shower curtains, and we've got a great little dining nook that can comfortably seat twelve (and storage for my root vegetables and other items!)

Teacher Notes

Teachers! Did you use this instructable in your classroom?
Add a Teacher Note to share how you incorporated it into your lesson.

Step 1: Find Some Old Wood to Salvage

Inside this old farmhouse on our property we found a gem. A massive long old shelf leaning up against the wall, just waiting to be used. Dragged it out, and cut it in half.

Step 2: Scrub, Bleach, Sand, Repeat!

Lots of elbow grease to get it all cleaned up enough to eat off of!

Step 3: Build a Stand

We used leftover 2x4s from our house framing, screwed 2 together and stained to fake the heavier beam look and made a cross-rail, oxer thingy for the table to sit on. A little rough, but key word is "free" and "repurpose" and it did the trick beautifully.

Step 4: Clean Up and Stain the Table Top

Cleaned up the edges, cut off the bad stuff, and rounded the edges using the lid for the screw bucket. Technical I know!

Stuck the two lengths of shelving together with two cedar planks (leftover decking) underneath. These planks are where the tabletop is sitting on the stand. Scrubbed in a light layer of stain and a few coats of polyurethane (or something similar, I forget what we chose to go with).

Step 5: Add Chairs

Gave some cheap 2nd hand chairs a new life with some paint, a mattress topper and some shower curtain pieces.

Step 6: Built Window Benches

Built two window benches with a rudimentary box shape, and lined it with leftover ceiling planks (pine tongue and groove). Painted it all white.

Cut a piece of plywood for the "lid" of the box, and cover it with mattress topper and shower curtain and we have a window seat. The fabric shower curtain has handled a lot of abuse and it wipes down really good too, so not worried about stains.

Add some hinges to the window seats and they double as storage boxes. Root vegetables keep perfectly in here, in the dark against an outside wall, and our guests would never know they're sitting right above my potatoes :)

Step 7: Curtains + Cushions = Cozy

Perfect place to sit and enjoy a morning cup of coffee and watch for deer. Or even lounge back with a book. 12 people can comfortably have dinner together, and you can pack a lot of kids back there on those benches. They are awesome!

Before and After Contest

Participated in the
Before and After Contest



    • Indoor Lighting Contest

      Indoor Lighting Contest
    • Metal Contest

      Metal Contest
    • Make It Fly Challenge

      Make It Fly Challenge

    8 Discussions


    4 years ago on Step 7

    You did an awesome job!! I love that you rounded the corners of the table, and it looks huge!! The window seats are a great way to seat people as well, good thinking. Very nice pillows. Inspiring!

    1 reply

    Reply 4 years ago on Introduction

    Meismeems, it IS huge. You can fit quite a lot of food in the centre of the table and still have lots of room around the edges for place settings - I love that about it.


    4 years ago on Introduction

    Love it! Great use of old wood & other materials! I will use this!


    Thank you! It's pretty basic, but we love its shape and size, it gets a ton of compliments and best of all it was free... it and the benches made 100% out of wood that was just going to waste. I love that about it.