DIY Wood Patio Table with Drink Storage

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Last month was my birthday (they just aren't as exciting as they used to be... a sign of getting old I'm sure) but I was sooooo pumped when my husband surprised me with a new patio table for my birthday! He MADE it which was even more awesome. I am so lucky he is talented and handy and sweet. :)

We had a small patio set that I purchased a couple years back at the end of the season for deep discount. It was a square table with a glass insert and 4 chair with faded, torn cushions so it was well past it's prime but we weren't making plans to replace it yet because there were other things on our list.... until.... one day the wind blew the table over. This broke the glass and we suddenly felt more inclined to replace the set.

There was a table on Domestic Engineer's site that I saw a few months back that I sent to my husband telling him that should be our next patio table because it was awesome. There was storage in the table for beer/wine/drinks which was neat and would surely be useful for us.

My husband naturally looked for a short cut and put his touch on this project and it turned out great! The beer/wine/drink storage uses two planter boxes and for our table they are removable (to wash and ensure water doesn't gather in the box when not in use). Here are two pictures, one of the underside and one of the planter box in the inset space. You can follow the directions from Domestic Engineer and instead of making the slatted wood boxes for the planters just use two 2x1s across the underside to create a ledge for the planter to sit on inset in the table.

These were taken before we stained it. I sanded it starting with a really coarse paper to a very fine paper. I used about 5-6 papers and it took around three hours.

We used red cedar wood and the stain was a semi-transparent stain so we could still see the wood grain but that it would be a little darker to go with our chairs better. We did one coat it beads the water so it is perfect. The stain is supposed to last about 3 years. If the water beads it's still good, if it does not bead then you know it's time to stain/protect it again. This table will last us a loooong time! I love it.

By the way, the new chairs we bought are metal and mesh so we do not have to worry about soggy cushions but they are still surprisingly comfortable. The chairs were at Menards on sale for $19 and came with a $7 rebate and that is the best deal we have ever seen for solid patio chairs. We bought eight because three can fit on each side plus two on the ends. They stack nicely too. :)

What do you think? Is this something you could use in your backyard??



  1. awesome table. I've seen the one on DE's site, but like the way you built yours with the planter box to be removable. The question I had is . . . are the legs solid?

    1. The legs are solid cedar. We wanted it to be heavy and durable so that is why we chose that route though I think you could go with something smaller and lighter if that was more suitable for your needs.

  2. Hi Kassy, I'm pretty new to woodworking, but have access to all the best equipment and am thinking of tacking this project. Love what you guys did with this table. I found the similar one on the Ana-White site, but it's with 2 x 4 legs and I would rather do the solid one you guys made. I like the simpler brackets underneath for the planter boxes too. Much easier. Any chance you or your husband have plans or lumber dimensions from the project? Being new at this I am scared to try it without those. Thanks if you can provide!

    1. Hi Jeff, So sorry for the delayed response! I talked with my husband who made the table with my father-in-law and they used the Domestic Engineer's plans and modified them as they went. That means there are no plans or a cut list. :( Sorry for the inconvenience. I do know they made the table top basically the same as Domestic Engineer's except the brackets for the planter box coolers which replaced those hefty wood boxes. The solid legs would create smaller openings on each side so just be sure that you measure your chair widths and add a couple of inches for elbow room when you make those cuts. Our table fits two chairs on the long sides with plenty of room or we can squeeze in a third if we need the extra seating... that's another option.

      Sorry again about the plans... I hope your project goes well! If you have any finished project photos then I hope you share them with me because I'd love to see!