I love the look of clean lines with mid-century modern furniture. However, anything that says “mid-century modern” automatically goes up in price by at least $200. When my husband and I were looking for bedside tables, we wanted something small that wasn’t too fussy. It only needed to hold a lamp, our phones and maybe a book. Whenever we found something we liked it would be several hundred dollars. Of course, multiply that by two because we wanted a matching set. All of the posts I found online for DIY mid-century modern side tables, required tools we didn’t have. I also discovered that hairpin legs weren’t that cheap. We needed a solution that was under $50 for each table and didn’t require extensive building skills. I’d almost resigned myself to a mismatched pair, when the hubby stepped it up with a clever Target and Ikea hack. We used an unfinished wood toy bin from target and bike hooks from IKEA. These DIY mid-century modern side tables are so simple that you can have zero building experience and make them look fantastic!
- Target large unfinished wood toy box ($20.00
- Four Ikea SKRALL hooks ($2.99 each)
- Black Spraypaint (we used a hammered metal, but I think bronze or gold would look nice too)
- Minwax-prestain, stain, and polycrylic protective top coat
- Phillips screw driver or power drill.
Steps for finishing wood box:
- First lightly sand with a fine grit sandpaper (220 works well). Wipe off all dust with a damp cloth and allow to dry completely.
- Follow the directions for the prestain (you can skip this but the stain will go on more even with this step).
- Apply stain following directions on can.
- Apply at least two layers of the polycrylic protective topcoat—If you like to have a glass of water next to you at night, I’d maybe go with three layers to really protect the wood.
Steps for Bike hooks turned hairpin legs
- As you are waiting for the stain and top coat additions to dry you can work on the legs.
- Remove the plastic tubes on the hook toss them or squirrel them away for some future unknown use.
- Lightly wipe legs with either steel wool or the sandpaper. You just want to lightly rough it up to make sure the spray paint stays.
- Wipe down with a damp cloth and allow to dry completely.
- The trick to a good spray paint finish is patience (not always my strong point). You need to do several coats and allow it to dry in between. Apply the spray paint at least 8 inches from the legs and keep it moving to avoid drips.
- Do as many layers as needed to get satisfactory coverage.
Putting it all together
- After everything is dry, place the legs on one of the short ends of the box screw them in with wood screws that aren’t too long. My screws were somewhere between 1/2 inch and 3/4 inch.
- You can double check by holding the leg up to the edge of the box and lining the screw up. It should be long enough to go into the wood at least halfway, but not come out the other side.
- Congrats you now have your own DIY mid-century modern table that is functional, fabulous and frugal.
Looking for other DIY furniture ideas? Check out our IKEA nightstand hack.