Kids' Trestle Play Table and Four Dollar Chairs

I wanted an inexpensive but wonderful gift for a special co-worker who is having her first baby after many years of trying and painful medical treatments. I loved this PB inspired trestle table and thought the plans looked like something I could handle. Paired with the four-dollar chairs, I felt this would be a winner. I had a few burps along the way with the table project....there's a paint stick glued to the bottom of one of the legs as a shim....have no idea how that leg ended up shorter. There's also a countersink drill bit inside the table somewhere, broke right off in there! My biggest challenge with the table was the stain. I have never used the all-in-one stain before and have to say, it is a tough product to work with. It is hard to do with a brush. I brushed on my first coat and wasn't happy at all. Sanding away mistakes is an ordeal because the poly in the product hardens everything up so quickly. I really had trouble here and am still not happy with how the stain turned out....I wish I had applied the first coat with a cloth, as I did all the other coats because there is so much more control than with a brush. If I use this product again (which I probably will), I would only apply with a cloth. The chairs were a breeze, however, you may notice that my back legs are on the wrong spot....that was a mistake I made with the first chair. Since I used glue before screwing, I couldn't undo it. So I just made the second chair the same way....no big deal, but they are NOT stackable this way. I tried to use firring strips, but they were splitting like crazy, so I just used them for the seat slats and used regualar boards for the rest. The other thing I did differently was that I didn't countersink my screws on the seat boards. I painted my pocket hole screws black and let them show. This way, if my friend ever wants to change the color of the chairs, she can easily unscrew them, paint the chair and screw them back on. This was a fun and "just challenging enough" project. The table was my second build and the chairs are my third. Each project has taught me a ton!

Estimated Cost
$50.00
Estimated Time Investment
Weekend Project (10-20 Hours)
Type of Wood
Pine and Cabinet grade plywood
Finish Used
Min-Wax All in One Stain with Poly in Antique Walnut for table and chair seats - 3 coats for table top and two coats on everything else.
Benjamin Moore's Niagara Falls in eggshell finish for chair body.
Recommended Skill Level
Beginner