How to Build Your Own Desk

With options ranging from furniture stores to thrift stores and garage sales, finding a desk of any style to fit your needs can be simple. However, for some, waiting to find the perfect desk may not be an option. Making a desk to fit your needs involves a few supplies and a clear afternoon.

  1. Measure and, using your table saw, cut your plywood desk top. When starting from a full sheet of plywood, you can either use the entire piece, or you can cut it to fit the size that best suits your needs. Make sure you use protective gear when using a table saw, and exercise caution while operating the tool. Use both safety goggles and protective gloves when sawing.

  2. Apply trim to the edges of the desk top. Using the saw, cut the trim pieces into sizes to fit the edges of the top. Using a hammer and nails or your nail gun, tack the trim onto the top. Space your nails about 2 inches apart to make sure that the trim is tight to the top.

  3. Apply stain and polyurethane to the desk top and trim. Using the paintbrushes, apply the stain and allow each coat to dry thoroughly. The number of coats of stain depends on how deep you want the color to be, so continue until you reach the desired color. Next, apply the polyurethane, one coat at a time. Allow each coat to dry before applying the next. Typically, you will need four or five coats of polyurethane.

  4. Attach the circular brackets to the underside of the top. Using nails or screws, attach the brackets to the four corners of the desk top.

  5. Screw the metal conduit into the circular brackets. Use 2-inch thick, 3-foot-tall metal conduit pipe, sheared with grooves at the hardware store. Turn your desk over, and set up your supplies for work.


  • Exercise caution when using power tools and wear protective gear.