Outdoor Coffee Table

Last Monday I showed you how I restored our fire pit by adding some new sheet metal to the ash pan and spray painting it.  I realized that we barely use our fire pit – especially in the summer.  Not only that but we currently have a burn ban going on in my county so I can’t have a fire even if I wanted to.  We love sitting by the fire on cool fall nights but that will be a few more months before that happens.  So I decided to make a removable table top so we can enjoy our space a bit more.  I went to Lowes and picked up some cedar boards to create a beautiful outdoor coffee table top that fits perfectly over my fire pit.

fire pit table

Now I am guessing I am the only one who is probably jazzed about this table!  I mean, after all, what are the chances you have the same fire pit that I do?  None.  But I am just so stinking proud of myself that I overcome my fear of building.  I love Ana White as a person.  But her magical building skills have always left me wanting.  But today I actually accomplished building a piece of furniture that didn’t look like crap so I am doing the happy dance.  Won’t you happy dance on my behalf even if this project won’t work for you?  Ahhhh you’re the best!

I love the wood grain in the cedar table.  Isn’t it beautiful?  I loved how it added to my outdoor living space and picked up on the dark wood of my newly stained deck.

outdoor cedar table

After speaking at the Haven Conference and going to the Kreg Jig booth I decided I must have one.  So I went to Lowes and purchased one for this beginner Kreg Jig project.  I also purchased cedar 1” x 4” boards because cedar holds up well in all types of weather when properly sealed.


1” x 4” x 8’ cedar boards (4)


Minwax English Chestnut Stain

Minxwax Pre-wood conditioner

Electric drill

Gorilla Wood Glue

Rust-Oleum Spar Varnish

Purdy paintbrush

Kreg Jig Master Kit

1” and 1 1/4” Kreg Jig screws

180 grit sand paper

My fire pit is a 3’ square.  So I cut enough boards for the entire piece to hang over on each side by 1 1/2”. I laid out all my boards first to see how it would look and I love all the variances in the wood grain.

fire pit table

I flipped all the boards over and then I used my Kreg Jig to bore holes into the wood and then used some Gorilla Glue wood glue and connected them all with the Kreg screws. 

kreg jig outdoor table

outdoor rustic table

Next I built the apron, using the Kreg Jig, to go under the table to fit just perfectly over the top of the fire pit. 

table apron

Then I gave all the pieces front and back a coat of Minwax Pre-wood Conditioner followed by a coat of Minwax stain in English Chestnut. I chose this color because it was a perfect medium brown with no red tones to it.  Then I followed that up with three coats of Rust-Oleum’s Spar Varnish which is made specifically for protecting outdoor surfaces.

And I am in love!! Check out the before and after…


Now we just store the fire pit grate cover under our deck and popped our new tabletop over the top of the fire pit.  I think the tabletop is way more conducive for the space but I love that I can convert it by just removing the tabletop to reveal the fire pit underneath.



My outdoor sanctuary is shaping up quite nicely.  Now I need to find some pillows to give it that pop of color.

Did you know you can get the Lowe’s Creative Ideas magazine on your Ipad or Iphone?  I just downloaded mine this week, check it out!LCI_ipad_promo2


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Disclaimer: As one of Lowes Creative Ideas bloggers I was challenged to ramp up my outdoor space this month. I received a gift card to Lowes as compensation for this project.

  • http://www.myrepurposedlife.net/ gail

    first-pure genius to use the firepit as double duty! Ohh I have one, it’s abandoned in the backyard. Do you know how awful it is to own a firepit, but never have anyone to join in the such fun? :(

    second, woohoo! you love the kreg jig, right? Oh my! there’s no stopping you now! you go girl!

    LOVE your table!


    • http://infarrantlycreative.net Beckie

      Oh.my.gosh. Kreg Jig is the best. I am ADDICTED. Making two bookshelves today!

  • http://fourgenerationsoneroof.com jessica@fourgenerationsoneroof

    Look at you go!!! That is awesome and I LOVE that you used the Kreg, I need to get one of those. My gramps was actually showing me how to use his “biscuit” machine to bore out holes and I was like, “hey gramp, have you ever heard of the KReg Jig.,?” he said, “WHAT!?”. Anyway, love the cedar boards, looks beautiful!

    • http://infarrantlycreative.net Beckie

      Oh my you have to try the Kreg it is amazing. It has changed building for me. For some reason it makes it even more attainable to me when I use the Kreg. I am making two bookshelves today with it.

  • Karen G

    Great idea! I think it would look even better in white (it would mirror your deck rails then), but I know that’s not very practical for outdoors. :^)

    • http://infarrantlycreative.net Beckie

      Yes unfortunately paint doesn’t do well on horizontal surfaces here in the Midwest. I would be repainting it next year…no thanks ;-)

  • http://www.dearwallet.blogspot.com Ariana of Dear Wallet

    That’s ingenious! Love this idea, pinned to show my brother who will be building a firepit this coming weekend!

  • http://www.katskalamities.blogspot.com Kathryn

    love,love…I want the fire pit first and then build that table….you need to patten that idea brilliant….

    • http://infarrantlycreative.net Beckie

      HA! Thanks Kathryn I couldn’t be more stoked about it.

    • Peter Cwik

      Actually it would be almost the same design. Just add a cross on the underside so that it hits the inside of the round pit at four points.
      I’m going to be making the same type of “cover” for a glass top outdoor table.

      • http://infarrantlycreative.net Beckie

        I would love to see a pic afterwards!

  • Lori

    Oh! I love it!! Any suggestion on converting a round pit to a square table?

    • http://infarrantlycreative.net Beckie

      Magic? HA! I have no idea that’d be a tough one.

  • http://www.serendipityrefined.com Kimberly from Serendipity Refined

    Fabulous! that top is BEAUTIFUL! Well done!

  • http://thescrapshoppeblog.com Michele @ The Scrap Shoppe

    Brilliant! We have a fire pit extremely similar to yours and this is the perfect solution to keep it in use during the hot summer. LOVE this, Beckie!

    • http://infarrantlycreative.net Beckie

      Thanks Michele and thanks for the repin!

  • http://www.dukesandduchesses.com Randi – Dukes and Duchesses

    What a brilliant idea! I love that your fire pit now does double duty. And it looks fantastic!

    • http://infarrantlycreative.net Beckie

      Thank you Randi, we have been outside every night just because I want to see it. HA!

  • Amy

    This is a fantastic idea. Great first Kreg Jig project. I know you’re going to love building with it. It’s empowering (and a little addictive). :)

  • http://www.aturtleslifeforme.com Natalie @ A Turtle’s Life for Me

    That’s awesome! Great job and I love the color you stained it! I really need to get over my fear of wood projects and break out the Kreg Jig I got at Haven! Thanks for making it look easy!

  • http://ourpinterestingfamily.blogspot.com Megan

    That is such a great idea! I love how it turned out. Enjoy that new coffee table!

  • http://www.alaynascreations.blogspot.com Alayna

    I’m totally inspired! I love that idea! I have a firepit that just sits out there unused in the middle of the patio most of the summer as it’s too hot for fires until fall/spring. This is another one of those ideas my husband is going to lovingly shake his head at my obsession with until he gets it all figured out with me (I’ll need his help as we have a round firepit and it will take a little tweaking to make it work) and built and can see how fantastic the finished product is.

    • http://infarrantlycreative.net Beckie

      Good luck Alayna, it is awesome and you will love it!

  • http://polish-ed.blogspot.com/ zolzetka

    Now that is awesome !!!!

  • Jerri

    It looks good. But, I don’t understand why people put wood burners on wood decks!
    Even if it is a composite material, plus it looks like it is either under a pergola or the deck has a roof. Can anyone spell F I R E, and I do not mean in the pit, maybe the house and deck.

    • http://infarrantlycreative.net Beckie

      My pergola is metal and we have a brick plate under the fire pit as well. To each his own I guess.

  • http://adventuresindiy1759.blogspot.com/ Chrissy Floyd

    Beckie – that is super awesome! One of these days, I will get the guts to try building something. :)

  • Karen S.

    Awesome job! Now to make a dining room table out of an unused pool table….

    • http://infarrantlycreative.net Beckie

      Ooh fun sounds like a challenge :-)

  • orelio marval

    muy interesante proyecto

  • finance

    When I originally left a comment I seem to have clicked on the -Notify
    me when new comments are added- checkbox and now whenever a comment is added I receive four emails with the exact same comment.
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    • http://infarrantlycreative.net Beckie

      Oh how annoying. Is there something you can click at the bottom of each emails. I’d hate to annoy you daily with all that biz!

  • JeanMarie

    Believe it or not I do have the exact same fire pit you have, with the same problem…bottom rusted out! I’ve been looking for replacement pan but now I will have to try to repair it like you did! I also love your idea for turning it into a table…I did something similar with an ottoman so we could use it for snacks and such. Great minds!!

  • Pingback: Creative DIY Outdoor Furniture Ideas

  • Liz

    Wanted to do this same thing to my hardly-ever-used fire pit and I actually do think I have this same one as you! :) thank you for sharing!

    • http://infarrantlycreative.net Beckie

      No prob. Hope you love it!