A Sewing Table for Small Spaces

Submitted by Ana White on Wed, 10/20/2010 - 20:38
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The perfect spot for a part time sewing enthusiast! Tucks neatly way, expands out to be a cutting or layout mat. Please note that this table is not intended for use with the sewing machine unless locking hardware is installed on the fold out legs and tabletop.

If your sewing takes over your dining table at least half the time, make sure you thank Kelly on our Community for recommending an expandable sewing table.

Expandable Simple Sewing Table

I love this idea because there is a tidy spot to hold your sewing machine, a shelf for baskets and other sewing things that you need to keep handy, tons of tabletop space, but it all folds up into a neat little package that you can roll into a closet.

Expands. Table height. Collapsed dimensions shown above.


Shopping List

1 – Sheet of Plywood or MDF
2 – 1x2s or 1x3s
4 – 2″ Caster Wheels (Overall clearance of 2 1/2″)
5 – Sets of hinges
2 1/2″ Screws

Common Materials
120 grit sandpaper
wood conditioner
paint brush
Cut List

1 – 1×32 @ 15 1/2″ (Top)
2 – 1×32 @ 26 3/4″ (Sides)
2 – 1×32 @ 12″ (Shelves)
2 – - 1×32″ @ 20″ (Leaves)
4 – 1x2s @ 29 1/4″ (Legs – Measure these!)

Tape Measure
Speed Square
Safety Glasses
Hearing Protection
Circular Saw
Power Sander
Drill Bit Set


Step 1

If you can, take this diagram to Blue or Orange and have them make your cuts. If you are cutting this yourself, start by cutting the plywood into 31 7/8″ widths (shown above as 32″), 48″ long. Then from those three pieces, cut out the remaining pieces. Remember, always consider the width of your saw blade as you cut.

Step 2

Build the Box

Use 2 1/2″ screws and glue to build your box as shown above. Predrill and countersink your screws.

Step 3

Caster Wheels

Now this is important – your wheels need to have a total clearance of 2 1/2″. If you wheels do not have a total clearance of 2 1/2″, DO NOT cut the legs just yet. Instead, add the wheels, then take a measurement from the bottom of the wheels to the underside of the tabletop. This will be your new leg length.

Step 4


Lay the whole thing on the ground, face down. Screw the leaves on with hinges as shown above.

Step 5

Step 6

Expanded size.

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Silky (not verified)

Wed, 10/20/2010 - 21:34

Thank you so much, Ana! My desk is definitely not big enough to hold both my serger and my sewing machine. Anytime I need both machines (which is the case with 90% of my projects) I'm working on the dining table.
I wanted to add a leaf to the side of my desk and couldn't figure out how to do the legs. Now I don't know whether to do this or to built the whole thing.

What kind of hinges do you suggest for the legs?

Krista @ The D… (not verified)

Wed, 10/20/2010 - 21:54

This is a really nice project. I had started making my Christmas list (which actually includes many things like, "Helping making this design" then a link to one of your plans) If you're looking for ideas, I would love to have a sewing table design that includes a lowered spot for sewing machines. I really like this sewing table: http://www.joann.com/joann/catalog/productdetail.jsp?CATID=cat3485&PROD… (Can you believe this costs 379.99?!? There has got to be an easier way! I know the lowering arm would be tricky, but I would love a design for it!)
Thank You!

Sophia Williams (not verified)

Wed, 10/20/2010 - 22:07

LOVE this! Well I actually haven't seen anything on your page that I don't love...you're awesome. Can you tell me though, is this too complex for a beginner? I have yet to do my first project, but I did get a Kreg Jig for my bday a few weeks ago and I am a little nervous to get started. But I so badly need this sewing table!

Laura (not verified)

Thu, 10/21/2010 - 02:01

Check this out! Purchased sewing tables are so pricey! These plans are great and you are awesome!

Elisha (not verified)

Thu, 10/21/2010 - 02:34

Thank you for including the cut diagram, I really appreciate it.

My sewing machine table from the 60's has a very different mechanism than the one suggested by orangesugar. It is a hinge with a metal spring. My machine is extremely heavy (because of its age), so this particular design would be difficult for me. I don't know if they still make the spring, but it may or may not work for Krista.

Jaime (not verified)

Thu, 10/21/2010 - 02:47

THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU! This is EXACTLY what I have been looking for! I am SO excited to build this! Woo HOO! ;)