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How to Build a Nightstand for under $40

Want to learn how to build a nightstand? Awesome, let’s build one together! It takes less than 2 hours to build this nightstand and it can also be used as a side table.

How to build a nightstand for less than $40 and under 2 hours.

Build it cheaper than buying it

We have been looking for a nightstand for Gabrielle’s bedroom ever since we started updating her room. We found a few we liked, but we did not like the price tags.

I can’t get over how expensive a nightstand can be. I just can’t bring myself to spend $100-$200 for one. Am I being cheap or do you find that expensive too?

I came across this beautiful x-shaped magazine holder on Pinterest and it made me realize that we could build our own nightstand.

Since this month’s At Home DIY Challenge is Build It Cheaper Than Buying It Furniture, it’s the perfect time to build a nightstand!

I’m participating in a year long DIY challenge with fabulous DIY bloggers. Every month we have a new challenge. Last month’s challenge was Make it Pretty Outdoors, I showed how to make a barn quilt door. At the bottom of this post you’ll find a bunch of Build It Cheaper Than Buying It Furniture projects.

This post also contains some affiliate links for your convenience. Click here to read my full disclosure policy.

How to build a nightstand. This is a tutorial demonstrating how to make a DIY modern nightstand.

How to build a nightstand

Materials

  • 1x Hobbyboard 16″ x 48″ (11/16″ thick)
  • 1x 2″x2″ x 8′
  • 12x 1.25″ screws 1 1/8″

Tools

Cut list

  • 2x 16″x16″
  • 2x 16″x5.5″
  • 4x 2″x2″ 17″ long

Instructions

Step 1: Cut the Hobbyboard based on the cut list above using a miter saw. We made sure the grain of the wood was going in the same direction for all the pieces.

NOTE: If you can not find a hobbyboard. You can also make your own by buying boards and joining them together with glue and biscuit joints. I shared a glimpse on how to do that when we built a screen door.

Use mitre saw to cut board to size.

Step 2: Use a miter saw to cut 2″x2″ in four pieces of 17″ in length.

Wood pieces needed to build a nightstand.
Wood pieces needed to build a nightstand.

Step 3: We made a total of 4 pockets with the Kreg Jig (2 at the top and 2 at the bottom) and drilled two inches from the side on each smaller piece of the Hobbyboard.

Sides of the nightstand with pocket holes.

Step 4: We placed the smaller pieces on each side of one of the big square pieces. We used bar f clamps to keep everything in place. We placed 1 ⅛″ screws inside the bottom pockets and drilled them into the big square piece.

Sides of the nightstand.

Step 5: We flipped over the newly assembled pieces and placed them over the remaining big square piece. We used the bar f clamps again to secure everything. Using a short screwdriver, we screwed in 1 ⅛″ screws inside the remaining pockets.

Box for nightstand.

Step 6: Using a Kreg Jig we made 2 pocket holes on each leg. We made sure to double check the positioning of each leg on the nightstand before making the pocket holes. All the pocket holes need to be the less visible as possible. We opted for them to be in the back of the leg and on in the inside.

Table leg with pocket holes.

Step 7: Once all four table legs had their pocket holes, it was time to attach them to the base of the nightstand. We made sure to measure first and leave a 1″ gap on each side.

Attaching table legs to tabletop.

Step 8: Time to flip over the nightstand and lightly sand all the sharp edges so that they are smooth.

And it’s finished!

PLEASE NOTE: You’ll find the detailed step by step and more photos at the bottom of this post.

DIY modern nightstand

How to build a modern nightstand.
DIY modern nightstand tutorial.

Doesn’t it look great? I love that it’s simple and doesn’t take away from the frame headboard we made.

Gabrielle is thrilled to have a nightstand. There’s enough room for her to store things in the cubby. We may add a little slot on the top like the slot found on this floating shelf.

I especially love the cost. It cost us less than $40 to build it! The hobbyboard was $21 and the 2×2 was around $7 (all in Canadian funds).

You may have noticed that we did not varnish or stain the nightstand. The reason being is because we want to continue building on to it. Curious as to what we have in mind? Stay tuned!

Build It Cheaper Than Buying It Furniture

Ready to see everyone’s project for this month’s theme: Build it cheaper than buying it furniture

At Home DIY participant

Goodness how I love those projects!! There are so many I want to build!!

Do you have one you want to build?

How to build a nightstand for less than $40 and under 2 hours.

P.S. If you loved my DIY nightstand tutorial, please PIN IT and share it! Thank you so much!

Building your own furniture

Have you ever built your own furniture because it was cheaper to build it than to buy it?

Sometimes it not necessary because it’s cheaper to build, but rather because you can’t seem to find what you want. Or sometimes both. When we built our wood wall sconces, it was because we couldn’t find what we wanted and it was really inexpensive to build them custom to our taste.

Have yourself a fabulous day my friends!

How to a build a nightstand. Custom DIY modern bedside table.

How to Build a Nightstand

Yield: 1 nightstand
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Active Time: 1 hour 40 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 45 minutes
Difficulty: Moderate
Estimated Cost: Less than $40

Learn how to build a nightstand. Complete step by step tutorial to build a modern nightstand.

Materials

  • 1x Hobbyboard 16"x48" (11/16" thick) spruce board
  • 1x 2"x2"x8' pine framing lumber
  • 12x 1 1/8″ screws

Tools

Instructions

  1. Cut Hobbyboard based on the cut list (in notes below) using a miter saw.Hobbyboard cut in pieces to build a nightstand.
  2. Use a miter saw to cut 2x2 in four pieces of 17″ in length.
  3. Make 4 pocket holes with the Kreg Jig two inches from the side (2 at the top and 2 at the bottom of each smaller piece of the Hobbyboard).Make pocket holes with Kreg Jig.
  4. Place the smaller pieces on each side of one of the big square pieces. Drill 1 ⅛″ screws inside the bottom pockets and drill them into the big square piece.
    Attach sides to the bottom piece.
  5. Flip over the newly assembled piece and place it over the remaining big square piece. Using a short screwdriver, screw in 1 ⅛″ screws inside the remaining pocket holes.Use a short screwdriver for small openings.
  6. Make 2 pocket holes at the top part of each leg. Each leg has to have a pocket hole in the back and inside, to make them less visible when the nightstand is assembled. The pocket holes will not be in the same location on all 4 legs. Double check before making the pocket holes.How to make pocket holes in table legs.
  7. Leaving a 1″ space on each side of the edge, attach legs to the assembled piece by drilling screws in each pocket hole. Screw legs into the base.
  8. Flip the nightstand over and hand sand all the edges to make all the edges smooth.Avoid sharp corners and edges by lightly sanding them.
  9. Enjoy the nightstand you have built.How to build a nightstand for less than $40 and under 2 hours.

Notes

Cut List:

  • 2x 16"x16"
  • 2x 16"x5.5"
  • 4x 2"x2" 17"

Recommended Products

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Katie Mansfield

Tuesday 14th of January 2020

This is adorable. It may be just the thing for my husband's side of the bed.

Amy

Thursday 27th of June 2019

It looks great! I can't believe the price of some furniture pieces either!

Megan

Tuesday 25th of June 2019

This would be perfect for my kid's room! Thanks for sharing this simple DIY nightstand.

Sherry

Monday 17th of June 2019

I love the modern look of the nightstand and I have been wanting a new nightstand for my son's room. I think the open back would be perfect for all of his chargers. You did a beautiful job.

Toni | Girl, Just DIY!

Saturday 15th of June 2019

I love the clean lines of this nightstand. The open back is such a great idea to keep the little book nook from looking like a dark cave.

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