How to Make an Easy DIY Craft Table with Tons of Storage

February 19, 2012

How to create a DIY craft table with store bought cubby units!

This is such an easy way to build a craft table with lots of storage! You don't need a dedicated craft room for this do-it-yourself craft desk.

There are no tools or major DIY knowledge needed for this tutorial. This craft station could also double as a kitchen island or desk. 

canvas bin cubby craft table
I built mine at counter height, but if you change up the cubby size, you could create a shorter version that uses regular dining chairs. 

I built this craft table years ago when we started finishing our basement. I later moved this table up to our loft when we turned that into more of a craft and office space. 

During our basement finishing,  I purged and reorganized what I keep down there, as far as decorative items and crafts. 

I want them all out of sight when things were said and done. This project was a big step in that direction.  :)

My DIY craft table started with this photo of Brook’s table:
blue craft table

It was perfect!

I wanted to try to do something similar but not have to actually build it. Well, not build it with major power tools anyway. Just minor power tools. ;)

At first I was going to use bookcases to make the table, but I ended up with these cube shelves I see everywhere:
9 cubby unit storage
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I got the nine cubby organizer unit and I've seen them all over the place for under $50. Here's another option in the same size. 

I purchased two of the units to act as the "legs" of my table. These are easy to put together and don't take any major tools. 

I feel like these units are more sturdy and will hold more weight than similar bookshelves.

You could also make this an IKEA hack by using their Kallax shelf units that I used for my closet transformation! 

Because the backing that came with them didn’t cover the entire back, and because I can’t help but pretty things up a bit, I had a beadboard panel cut down:
beadboard paneling
And then I nailed them into the backs of the cube units. 

I knew exactly what I was going to use for the tabletop – I kept our old laminate island countertop after I replaced it with the butcher block

It’s been sitting in the garage forever and I have always felt like I’d be able to use it for something, and this was it! I LOVE using what I have!

I dragged the incredibly insanely unbelievably heavy counter downstairs to put it on top of the cubes:
reusing old counters
Oh em gee, that sucker was crazy heavy! And I’m crazy for shuffling it down the stairs by myself, but that is how I roll.  

I screwed long screws through the top of the cube shelves and into the bottom of the counterweight a drill to make sure it wasn’t going anywhere. (I used six screws on each side.)

The cubes were just a skosh wider than the island top, but I was fine with that:
DIY tall craft table with chairs
I found the little canvas storage cubes for $4 each:
canvas cube storage containers
I didn’t get enough for every shelf, just because it was going to get a tad expensive for both sides, and because I thought it would be nice to display some of the decor items I use most often. 

You could use decorative baskets for the cubbies as well!

Pretty much every bit that used to sit on these shelves:
craft supplies in bins
Is now in these bins:
canvas bins craft supplies
PLUS some! And I am giddy about it!!

I was able to store all of my sewing items, paint, glitter, glue...all of it in one spot! 

I actually have empty shelves on the other side of the desk, so there’s a ton of storage space still left. Ya. hoo.

This easy DIY project has also worked well for when I use my sewing machine -- it is the perfect cutting table. 

This spot in the basement will (hopefully) be a small kitchenette some day, so this craft desk will work as a table as well:
cubby craft storage table
(I still need to paint the back of those beadboard panels.)

Originally I was going to put my old craft table in another room down here, but that’s changed for a few reasons. 

One of the biggest is that when I really thought about it, I didn’t want to be in a teeny room away from everybody when working on crafty projects. 

This way I can be out where I can watch TV be with the family while I craft:
cube storage craft table
The chairs are actually from our kitchen island, I just brought them down here to see how the size and height works. When it’s in the budget, I plan to get a couple more for this spot. 

I love that the table is SO large and we can use it for anything – eating, crafting, puzzles, games, whatever!

The old craft table was great, but it was HUGE. This still has plenty of surface area, and adding so much storage is the cherry on top!

I may look into stools instead of chairs, so we can potentially fit a couple more people at the table as well:
craft table from cube shelves
My hope is that when we start the electrical in the basement, we can rough in a spot for a pretty little chandelier that will hang over the table. FUN!

The total cost was $100 to build the whole thing – the two cube shelves were $80 and the beadboard backing was $20. (And I have a bunch leftover!) 

If you don’t have an island counter top laying around (but really, who doesn’t??), you could have a piece of wood cut to size and then round off the corners and paint it. 

Or maybe some butcher block from IKEA?

It only took a few hours total – to put the shelves together, nail the beadboard to the back and secure the island counter to the top:
how to make an easy craft table
And we’ve got a custom craft table with TONS of storage:
diy craft table with cube storage
Ohhhh, I love storage. It makes me SO HAPPY. 

We later moved this up to the loft when we started transforming it from a play room to more of a craft space and office: 
easy craft table with cubby units
See how I made that cute DIY craft caddy here!

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  1. It looks great! And putting it where you can see The Bachelor or SYTYCD? Genius! ;)

  2. LOVE this, Sarah! Wish I had a room I could put something like this in my house somewhere but no devoted craft room...

  3. Awesome!!! What a great use for the old countertop. Bravo!

  4. I JUST saw this on pinterest...wait, I follow you. It
    looks great. Awesome.


  5. Fantastic! Isn't getting more storage the best? I got a new dresser for my studio this weekend, and I'm LOVING the huge drawers. So awesome for storing my jewelry parts and shipping supplies.

  6. Looks fantastic! I LOVE those closetmaid organizers. Instead of buying the expensive baskets we figured out those rolling 3 drawer storage carts that have plastic drawers work great. $10 for 3 bins. I use them as dressers in my kid's closet & bought blue/green ones for toys.

  7. That's great! I saw that craft desk as well and want to do something similar in my loft for the kids. I love your spin on it! And the price tag as well! Great job!

  8. That could be used for so many things...a library, a desk, a mini office. Possibilities are endless.

    Love it!

  9. Fantastic! And very creative. <3

  10. We just finished a similar project for my craft room. We used a long countertop we found at Lowe's on clearance and two of the smaller Closet Maid cubes (six openings instead of nine)fasted at each end with L brackets. We centered a nine opening cube under the countertop, against the wall, again with L brackets.

    I have a small, home-based monogramming business so I have lots of fabrics I use in applique work. Now it's all neatly folded and clearly visible in the cubes. I had it in plastic bins which was just not working well for me. I spent way too much time digging around in those bins looking for the right fabrics. The cubes are SO much better.

    My vinyl and Silhouette and Cricut supplies are in the cubes under the countertop.

  11. I love it!! I especially love that you were able to find a new purpose for your old countertop. Super jealous of this great craft space you have. Great job! :)

  12. If you had the space, you could also top this with an old door for a fantabulously huge table !

  13. I just made my own table today! (with the help of a friend) I"ll post about it soon. It hasn't been prettied up yet, but soon, I hope!) may still post about it!

  14. Score! What a great way to reuse old countertop and gain needed storage {and cuteness} to boot! Looks great!

  15. All I have to say about that is, WOW! Your giving me some ideas for my sewing/craft area in my home. Again, too, too, cool!

  16. That's awesome! Cleaning the garage out and saving money! Love all the storage. Great job Sarah!

  17. Your desk is great and you have a lovely open space for working in. Lots of room for friends. I have a folding drafting table that I set up when I have more than two or three of us crafting.
    If you have a lot of bead board left over, would there be enough to face it inwards on the back of your shelves? It can be pieces with out the seams showing too much if it is long enough lengthways.
    My craft desk is counter height as well and I love it. I can stand and work comfortably, which is great during the designing stage when you are getting up and down to find supplies, or you can sit at 24" pub height stools like yours, when I am doing detail work. It's easier to get down off a 24" seat than up off a regular chair.
    Thanks for sharing your awesome design ideas! :)

  18. I love this! You did an amazing job, as always!

  19. Your craft table turned out perfect. I love the idea of using a couple of cube shelves for end storage. And I always love an easy project. :)

  20. slightly jealous. but so happy for you! what a great project!! Good job. :-)

  21. It looks awesome, Sarah! Love that you added beadboard and all your fun little jars give it so much character:)

  22. What a great idea! Love that you were able to re-use your old counter top too, genius!

  23. That looks great! I loved Brooke's craft table, too, and I've been thinking about building one with Expedit shelving, but your idea is pretty darn awesome!

  24. I had a vision of trying to get a counter top down my own basement stairs - not a good vision glad you were able. Now could you put some cute craft ribbons and supplies in all the empty jars for my visual appeal? Thanks.


  25. This is a great idea! I've been brainstorming how to make a desk like that one and you just solved my problem! I love any excuse to go to Ikea, so a butcher block top it is!

  26. Awesome! I want to make one now...XoXo

  27. Looks fabulous! I would want to watch tv too.

  28. Our tables look almost exactly alike, except I didn't have an old countertop to use! I have loved using mine for all my projects, and the table height is perfect with the cubes!

  29. Very nice! I recently added a cubby organizer in my laundry room and love it. I got it at Costco for about $100. It also came with all the little canvas totes. So this may be an option for your readers, too.

    You can see mine here.

    I love your display items, too.

  30. This looks amazing! I have passed this on to a friend who is putting her craft room together. Great idea!

  31. How funny!! We juuuuuuuuuust did this last night!! Except we turned the cubbies over (to lower it) and made it a big 'ol school table for my kids (I homeschool 2 days a week) and it is AMAZING! Used a slab door (36x80) for the top and it seats 2 chairs on either side with plenty of room! We painted the door and VOILA! LOOOOOOOOOOOVE! The best part...when the kids are done...or bigger...flip 'em back over and have this tall table you described!

  32. Ok I'm jealous! That's beautiful!!! Wanna make me one:) love it!!!
    I'm so like you, I'm redoing my laundry room....and I hauled those lockers in all by myself cuz I'm stubborn and wan to see it done ASAP!! No waiting for hubby :)

  33. oh sorry I should also share that we used the 6 cube cubbies (hence the 36" size) :) just in case anyone wants to make a kids table, instead.

  34. Love it! I'm skipping this party, you don't want to see my stinking closets!

  35. I likie, likie a lot!!!! Just may have to make myself one of these. Good choice to put it out in the fam room. Who wants to be stuck in the laundry room all alone :) well I guess in my case dirty socks would always be around. thanks.

  36. This looks great! I Love all that storage.

    Since my craft space is in the basement as well, I wanted to tell you that when we finished our basement we had a gas fireplace installed in the family room. It was the best decision we've made in our home to date! In MI winters, the basement gets pretty chilly. That fireplace is as efficient as our furnace and with the push of a button heats the entire basement up as hot as we want it in no time. Makes it so much more inviting for crafts and everything else! At $2000, it was no drop in the bucket, but it was seriously the best $2000 we've ever spent!! Just something for you to consider while you're making plans :)

  37. OK, can you come fix my craft room, it needs you badly!

  38. I am loving this!!! What a great and thrifty idea! I love that it sits in a place where your family hangs out too! That is always a big concern for me, I want time to do my projects, but I want to be in the same area as my family.

    Oh, and LOVE that it turned out how you envisioned it... that is always the scariest part for me! lol

    My last project turned out how I had it in my head... yes!

  39. This is just what I need, but with the addition of casters on the bottom so I can move it around a bit.

  40. What a great DIY version! I have been eyeing this craft table for awhile trying to figure out how I can do it. Funny thing is I just bought 2 of those cubicle shelves. Thanks for the inspiration and fun...looks like I have a vision for my office!

    Katheryn F.

  41. this is great....I was thinking about doing this as well......Question: how do you safely secure the counter to the top? and I guess the chair height would be like counter or bar height?

  42. I bet you will LOVE your new table! I use mine everyday! Love that you used a real countertop for the top. Probably so much easier to keep clean and much more durable then wood.

  43. Love, love, love this, Sarah!! It would be me too, dragging that counter top down by myself.
    Your table is just so great!!!

  44. Beautiful room what a nice job. I have no room just designated for crafts but I have to admit I do most of my work in the basement anyway I do mostly painting and fauxing.

  45. Love how it came out and love that you used something you already had to keep it thrify :-) Can't wait to see more of the basement progress!

  46. What an awesome idea! It looks so great! Thanks for the idea. I definitely want to try this somewhere in my house!

  47. Beautiful! Nicely done. I'm loving the gradual progress on the basement. So jealous you have so much extra space. Can't wait to see more.

  48. That is awesome! Now you can get your craft on, and watch American Idol. No? Is that just me? Oops. Ok. Anyhow, what a clever build. I love that you used what you had for the top. So cool!

  49. YOU SO ROCKED THIS!!! Love it.

  50. That is fabulous! I love how much storage there is without it taking up a ton of room and a lot of it is hidden! Thanks for the inspiration!

  51. I LOVE this!!! What a great idea! And I LOVE how you made the jars looks so cute on there as well! I can't tell you how great it looks!

  52. I love the beadboard idea! I might borrow it. I have a craft/sewing table with the table Closestmaid Cubeicals shelves as a base. Mine is about 9 ft long and has 4 of those shelves supporting the tabletop which is just melamine coated MDF ($35-ish from Lowes). I had them cut it down a little bit and then I covered the edges with the iron-on edging. I was always nervous about the shelves collapsing under the weight of the tabletop and all of my stuff, so I bought two adjustable legs from Ikea. The table top isn't attached to the shelves at all, but the legs are screwed into the underside. It's kind of handy because I can shift it around and rearrange every time I find good ideas on Pinterest. I swear I spend more time organizing my craft area than actually doing crafts. I'll show you some pics tomorrow. I need to charge my camera battery. :-)

  53. Loved it! Nice table to have everything organized in the kitchen and an excellent design.

  54. I love this Sarah!! I love that you were able to reuse the counter top like that -- and make the whole thing so cheaply!! It's a beautiful use of space and just invites you to be creative! =)

    FYI: The same ClosetMaid 9-cube organizer (in white or espresso) is on sale at Staples this week for $39 too! They also have the fabric/canvas drawers for $6.99.

    ~ Mara @ Super Savings

  55. Oops. forgot to say that the organizers are also $39.99 at Target this week (as well as $39 at Staples, like I mentioned above) -- and the fabric drawers are $5.99!

    ~ Mara @ Super Savings

  56. i know there's like a billion comments saying this, but now there's a billion and one. this is so stinking genius. love it!

  57. I Googled for craft tables and your blog popped up. When I read and saw your pictures of your crafty work I decided I was going to do the same thing. Thanks so much for the inspiration and for sharing. You are welcome to come and flip some pages at The Purple Scrapbook there you will see pictures of My Purple Craft Room.

  58. This cube organiser is great'love the table.

  59. I was just browsing on Pottery Barn because it's great for ideas. I saw this project table and thought immediately of your post.

    Love yours just as well as theirs and your cost was less than a tenth of theirs. :-)

    Keep up the great work.

  60. Dear Sarah,
    A million thanks for sharing this project. I just emptied out my garage-want to move my craft room from a spare bedroom to the garage. I, too, saw a similar table at Pottery Barn-Whoa!. Pricey. My craft dilemma has been solved! Going to Home Depot or Lowe's to see about a large laminate counter. Now- I need a pantry-just got quoted a $900.00 price tag. Have you got a tutorial that will save me some money? Blessings!

  61. LOVE this idea! What are the dimensions of the countertop that you used?

  62. Hi, just wondered how to attach the top surface to the side legs, i got two of the cube things and got a sanded wood plank from lowes to paint and use as the table top! im 19 and so im not really comfortable with power tools and my dad shutters at the thought of it haha but like most of the men in the family being very stuck in their ways and stubborn asking them for help of advice is like talking to a wall because they just try to avoid it in hopes i wont try to do 'big' projects on my own so in turn of course being just as stubborn i just wing it! ha so anyways just wondering what i need to get like screws or nails and what size & thickness possibly??

  63. I LOVE this! Do you know the dimensions of the laminate top? Thanks!

  64. This is beautiful. I was wondering how often you use it...would you say it's pretty stable?

  65. I am in the process of making one of these. I just bought 2 of the 9 cube organizers. I am going to order a laminate counter top that is 36" deep x 62" long. I was wondering, do you need to attach a piece of plywood to the underside of the counter top in order for it to fit flush? The reason that I ask is that the man at Menards told me that if I didn't either order a deeper counter top or attach a piece of plywood to the underside, it wouldn't work.

    Please email me back regarding this. My email is The counter top is rounded on both of the long ends of it.

    I just want to make sure that this is going to work before I go and spend the money on the counter top.


  66. This looks great, but did your counter magically fit the dimensions of the shelves or did you have it cut?


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