Laptop desk becomes a couchside office.

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Project by Shawn K. posted 06-27-2012 03:01 AM 2409 views 5 times favorited 5 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Back around Christmas I made my wife a cabinet for her sewing supplies. This cabinet led to a sewing table, fabric storage, and an office converted into a sewing room. My wife is happy, everybody else is happy, but this did create a slight issue.

I no longer have an office in which to write, surf, etc. I’ve been making do with a laptop and one of those wretched laptop carts that never seem to be right height or have enough space to accomplish much at all. To that end, I decided to build a new desk that would fit the living room, and slide up next to the couch. I wanted a larger desktop, and some storage for the bits and sundry that accumulate around command central in the living room.

I worked for about three weeks on this. The wood used is ambrosia maple, walnut, and some birch ply on special at my local Woodcraft. I took the lumber from rough sawn to finished stock using my new to me jointer, and my fathers hand-me-down planer.

The top was glued up using dowels to keep the planks aligned and add a little strength to the joint. Everything else is glued and screwed with some contrasting color plugs to cover the screws. The finish is ‘brushing’ lacquer on the top with a slight coat water-based poly over the top as a final finish. The rest of the desk is finished with tung oil and paste wax.

All in all, I’m pleased with the way this turned out. I’m enamored with the way the contrasting wood looks. It took a bit to make sure the plug holes were lined up symetrically instead of my usual higgeldy-piggledy screw placement technique. While the pictures don’t show it, there is an interesting geometry to the contrasting plugs that I really like.

I’ve had a lot of luck with the Ambrosia maple lately, my local Woodcraft got a bunch in at a great price. The Walnut has been drying in my father’s basement for about ten years now. All in all an inexpensive project for me, but in the living room it looks like about $35 at least. The stamp of approval from the wife was when she says, “That’s how you’re going to make the coffee table look when you build one.” I wasn’t aware I was building a coffee table, but it’s good to have guidance.

Thanks for looking.

-- -- Never entrust power to those who desire it.

5 comments so far

View eddie's profile


8565 posts in 2820 days

#1 posted 06-27-2012 03:29 AM

beautiful desk and she right it would be a beautiful coffee table too

-- Jesus Is Alright with me

View Ken90712's profile


17594 posts in 3395 days

#2 posted 06-27-2012 08:57 AM

Well done, Looks great should serve you well.

-- Ken, "Everyday above ground is a good day!"

View ElmoSr's profile


241 posts in 3232 days

#3 posted 06-27-2012 11:50 AM

i like and i am going to copy the design

-- ElmoSr,Ga. Life is Hard by the Yard,,,But a Cinch by the Inch

View Woodwrecker's profile


4203 posts in 3782 days

#4 posted 06-27-2012 12:45 PM

“That’s how you’re going to make the coffee table look when you build one.”

ahhh, my kind of wife !

That came out really nice.
As much as we use our front room, I bet one or two of those will eventually show up at our house.
Thanks for sharing.

View changeoffocus's profile


467 posts in 1823 days

#5 posted 06-23-2014 12:42 AM

Form and function, well done.

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