Tessellating Coffee Tables

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Project by leftcoaster posted 09-18-2017 05:31 PM 1007 views 5 times favorited 8 comments Add to Favorites Watch
Tessellating Coffee Tables
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Tessellation: A tessellation of a flat surface is the tiling of a plane using one or more geometric shapes, called tiles, with no overlaps and no gaps. In mathematics, tessellations can be generalized to higher dimensions and a variety of geometries.

Tessellations are also a genre of origami in which the artist creates complex geometric forms by folding. My daughter is an avid practitioner and so when it came time to replace the coffee table she gave me this challenge (and her design). She also did the math :-).

Each of the five tables is a hexagonal top on a triangular base. Stretchers are mortised into the legs with dominos. The mortises on the stretchers are mitered and enter the legs on a 90 degree angle.

Each leg exposes half of its top (end grain) and can receive the top of another table, concealing the open part of that leg.

Tables can be interlocked in any configuration, allowing them to be clustered for board games, elongated in front of the sofa, or separated for use closer to another chair in the room.

I built these in cherry, finished with BLO, garnet shellac, and oil based polyurethane.

8 comments so far

View pottz's profile


2597 posts in 917 days

#1 posted 09-18-2017 06:05 PM

nice work,a great versatile set of tables.i love the look and finish on these.great job.

-- sawdust the bigger the pile the bigger my smile-larry,so cal.

View majuvla's profile


11876 posts in 2800 days

#2 posted 09-18-2017 07:26 PM

Very clever set of tables. Posibbilities are endles.

-- Ivan, Croatia, Wooddicted

View PaxJen's profile


42 posts in 589 days

#3 posted 09-18-2017 08:52 PM

Really nice. Love the design and the finish.
Add magnets, maybe?

-- Pax - Maryland - Looking stupid is my superpower

View WayneC's profile


13751 posts in 4030 days

#4 posted 09-18-2017 09:29 PM

Very nice design.

-- We must guard our enthusiasm as we would our life - James Krenov

View Randy Price's profile

Randy Price

238 posts in 3433 days

#5 posted 09-19-2017 12:55 AM

Very nice – reminds me of FLLW hexagonal end tables.


View helluvawreck's profile (online now)


30499 posts in 2799 days

#6 posted 09-19-2017 03:50 PM

These groups of tables are very adaptable to different situations. Nice Work!

helluvawreck aka Charles

-- If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music which he hears, however measured or far away. Henry David Thoreau

View ArtMann's profile


900 posts in 748 days

#7 posted 09-19-2017 05:11 PM

I can imagine some great possibilities for this design in a restaurant business.

View leftcoaster's profile


205 posts in 809 days

#8 posted 09-19-2017 05:22 PM

Thanks all for the kind remarks. ArtMann—I hadn’t thought of that. It is definitely not great when you go to a restaurant with round tables and try to push them together. This could indeed be helpful.

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