Balustrade Coffee Table

Photo by JHavinga

My good friend Jen from House of Wood asked me to team up with her to build her parents a new coffee table.  She loved the look of Restoration Hardware’s Balustrade Coffee Table, and wanted to use a similar style leg.

The folks at Osborne Wood were kind enough to create a custom leg (now available for sale) and worked with us to make the leg as affordable as possible. 

Just add a top and bottom …

And you’ve got yourself a beautiful custom coffee table!

Here’s from Jen: “It was an easy build… took about 6 hours to build and then 3 days to finish. It turned out really well! Total cost was $95 for lumber and supplies, plus $28/leg. Not a bad project for a couple hundred bucks! Especially when RH sells theirs for $1700.

Jen is sharing her building post here, so please, take a second and stop over and check out lots more photos and tips!

Balustrade Coffee Table Plans

The plans for this coffee table follow.  Please share a photo when you are done, we love seeing your projects!

Wall Mounted Can Organizer

We have a good sized pantry with deep shelves, but the can food situation never was quite right.  We have ample shelving space – it was more keeping the cans organized AND visible, but not having to go rearrange cans every couple of days.  Who wants to do that?

On my last trip home from Costco, when I realized I had THREE cases of diced tomatoes already in the pantry, I had my moment.  The canned food situation had to change.  

At first, I thought of ways to create canned food systems on the shelf.  We had been gifted a wire rack for the shelf, but the problem was keeping only one kind of can in each row – if one person went rouge on you, it’s was all over.

And then it hit me.  The canned food needed to be in a dispenser on the big blank wall at the end of my pantry.  

How did I not see that sooner.

Anyway, after a couple of days of thinking about it, I built this!

can dispenser   can organizer

It’s pretty simple – all 1×3 boards, just screwed together with acrylic glass on top.   The trick was cutting the bottom at an angle, so the cans stay inside the divider.  And the acrylic glass on the front so I can see exactly how many cans of diced tomatoes I have all the time.  I was lazy, so I designed the entire organizer to fit so I wouldn’t have to cut the acrylic glass.


  • Low profile design takes up minimal space on the wall
  • Automatically rotates older cans to the front
  • Cans dispense easily, but won’t fall out on their own
  • Simple build using all off the shelf materials and basic tools
  • Clear glass front keeps cans in plain sight so you know when you are running low
  • Easy to hang with built in hanging supports on the back
  • Can be easily modified to fit different height cans

No Acrylic Glass?  No Problem!

You can use 1x2s and 1x3s instead of the acrylic glass, if that’s your preference.  It’ll be cheaper and easier to build this way too.  Just screw the 1x2s and 1x3s to the front of the dividers.

can organizer

Plans Sized Down from Photos

I do need to tell you that the canned food organizer that I built was a full 12 cans high – which is super awesome – but dropping the first can in 12 cans high is a little sketchy – will the can blow up?  Will it shatter out the front acrylic glass?  It hasn’t yet on me, maybe it never will, but just to be safe, for these plans, I adjusted so its only 8 cans high.

If you need more can storage, my recommendation is simply to build two (or more) organizers, and stack them up.

Bean Bag Toss Baseball Game

Here’s another great gift build idea as part of our Handbuilt Holiday series.

handbuilt holiday

For the Holiday season, Jaime Costiglio and I team up to create a new gift plan every Friday.  You can see all of our past plans here.

We love today’s plan!  Its great for an older child, and can be modified easily for any sport!

bean bag toss game indoors

We especially love the decor element it adds to the space.

bean bag baseball toss game

This project was built by Jaime Costiglio – please take a second to hop over and check out her build post with lots more photos, details, and links to the baseball bean bags.


Spice Drawer Insert

Reader submitted photo by MOOSMANI

You know the tiered spice drawer inserts you find in fancy kitchens that just costs way too much?

Well, you can make your own for a few bucks!

And this project is ridiculously easy! 

If you have a drawer to spare, this will help you get your spices organized. It could also work in the bathroom for make-up or vitamins, or whatever you want.

You won’t believe just how easy these spice drawer inserts are to make.  Here’s how I build them:

spice drawer insert diy

Once you build the inserts, just layer them in the drawer.

spice drawer insert

Then you can adjust the height of the tiers by simply overlapping.  Trace the overlaps, remove from the drawer, and nail together.


  • 1/4″ plywood
  • 1×2 furring strips
  • 3/4″ brad nails and a brad nailer
  • Circular saw or Tablesaw

Step 1: Measure Your Drawer

First, measure your drawer, both width and length.

Cutting the Wood

  • Cut the 1/4″ plywood into strips about 5″ wide (you can make them less or more, depending on what you want to store in the cabinet).
  • Then cut the 1/4″ plywood strips to equal the width of your drawer.  You’ll need about four – depending on your drawer depth.
  • For every tier, also cut a 1×2 equal to the width of your drawer.

For this drawer, that means I cut four pieces of 1/4″ plywood 5″ wide x 7-7/8″ long.

The easiest way to cut the plywood is with a tablesaw.  But if you don’t have a tablesaw, you can also cut with a circular saw (I wrote a whole post on how to do this the easiest way).

Another alternative is to purchase “balsa wood” or hardwood boards at the hardware, hobby or craft store in a comparable size (but it will be a little more expensive).

Building the Spice Drawer Inserts

Okay, so now it gets really easy.

Just glue and nail the 1/4″ plywood pieces to the 1×2.

Do this to all of the inserts.  I used 3/4″ long finish nails.

TIP: Use a 1×2 scrap to hold the other end of the plywood piece up as you nail.

Each insert will look like this.

Installing Inserts In Drawer

Now just set the inserts in the drawer.  

You can add a 1×2 spacer at the back if there is extra room.

You can also nail the inserts to each other.  Just place all the inserts in the drawer, overlapping as desired to fit your spices.  Trace each overlap with a pencil on the front.  Then remove and nail together on the back side, nailing through the 1/4″ plywood on the back side into the underside of the 1×2.

Best part – using up scraps from various projects, this custom wood insert was FREE!!!  And even if you bought new materials, we are talking like under $5 to make this! 

Love it?  Please share it!!