Stock tables are too mainstream for your living room? You want individualized design and materials as well as some nice practical features? Excellent! I constructed a table from off-the-shelf plastic boxes and a wooden tabletop. This guide will show you how to build it.
Let us start with the plastic storage boxes. Mine have dimensions of 52 × 36 × 29.4 cm and a fill volume of 46 liters each. Prices vary considerably depending on the robustness, but you should be able to purchase a sufficient box for under EUR 10. Four of the plastic boxes will serve as table legs. Since we stack them in towers of two, the clear height – below the tabletop – is 57.5 cm. Using stock plastic boxes implies a lot of advantages: They are light, unless you put heavy things into. They are exchangeable, in case you damage one, foldable, easy to transport and stackable. The figure shows the table legs made of two stacks of boxes with a light distance of about 52 cm.
Tabletop materials depend on your requirements on e. g. visual appearance and scratch resistance. My tabletop consists of glued laminated timber made of beech wood, which was polished and varnished. Its dimensions are 150 × 80 × 2.7 cm. The distance and even the amount of your box legs are subject to variation depending on the target size of the tabletop. Although the utilized tabletop is quite heavy, metal frames are glued to the bottom side to prevent slipping, cf. figure with upside-down positioned tabletop below. Stability is improved further by storing many things into the boxes.
Since the surface of your boxes may not be very decorative, removable textile tubes give your table legs a nice look. My zebra-print covers are simple rectangular pieces of fabric, which have been seamed and sewed to tubes. The covers are fixed by making them very tight, fitting by adhesion on the boxes and clamping them between the frames and the upper part of the upper boxes.
The whole table can be disassembled very easily – a very useful property for moving furniture. Store things within the boxes, which you do not need often, since you have to remove the tabletop to get access. Even more functionality can be achieved by installing LEDs to the frames to get nice illuminated box covers. Of course, you can change the height level of the tabletop by using only a stack of one box each.