60 Easy DIY Ways How to Build a Desk Quickly and Cheaply

Last updated on September 19, 2021

How to build a desk quickly, easily, and cheaply? We will show you 60 (well organized) easy ways to do it. Read on!

In a hurry? Check out this project: DIY Corner Desk

If I think about it, I’ve never lived in a home that didn’t have a desk. And it was always used for many purposes. Indeed, everyone always used our desks whenever they needed to do homework, craft something, or play with something. It was always the most multi-functional piece of furniture at home.

What's Inside?

How to Build a Desk?

how to build

Here’s a quick rundown of making a homemade desk:

  1. Choose the material. The best material for a DIY desk is beech or birch. These woods are light and durable enough to make furniture. You can also try oak, maple, and pine. And most often than not, you will use anything you have available if you’re trying to stay within the budget.
  2. Measure the wood boards. 2x6s are very easy to work with for this project. Cut them with a circular saw.
  3. Drill the pocket hole at an angle for each screw.
  4. Attach the boards with glue and wood screws to make a tabletop.
  5. Use wood filler to cover the drill holes.
  6. Stain and paint the tabletop.
  7. Measure and cut boards for the legs and the desk frame. 2x4s or 2x2s are ideal for this. Note that you will need a miter saw to cut the boards at an angle.
  8. Stain and paint the legs. Consider using a wood conditioner first to prevent streaks when you stain and paint it later.
  9. Attach the desk legs to the tabletop using screws and glue. You may use metal brackets for support.

These steps are enough to get you going, and you can follow any plans to build a desk.

And because there are so many types and designs of desks, you may choose any of the following ideas with plans.

DIY Corner Desk

This is our choice for the best DIY desk idea overall. It’s relatively easy to build (by following great plans and guide), it’s very functional and exceptionally attractive.

The basic steps are these:

  1. Choose the material. The best wood for a desk is beech or birch. They are light woods and durable too – ideal for furniture. However, you might consider oak (more durable) or pine board (light and inexpensive).
  2. Measure your corner space.
  3. Cut the wood boards. A corner desk is made of two tabletops attached at a perpendicular angle.
  4. Use wood glue and screws (drill a pocket hole for each) to attach the table surface together.
  5. Stain and paint the finished tabletop.
  6. Measure and cut the legs. The height of a desk you should aim for is 28 to 30 inches. That’s the ideal sitting height. It does, however, depend on how tall the person using it is.
  7. Stain and paint the legs.
  8. Attach the legs to the surface using glue and screws.

These basic guidelines are enough to follow any simple plans for a corner desk.

How much does it cost to build this desk? $100 or less if you stay within the budget (sometimes even less than $50).

Computer Desk

If you’re not crazy about much of anything we can buy in today’s furniture market, at least in your price range, build this metal and wood DIY computer desk idea on a budget. It even includes a keyboard tray. See the article to see the DIY desk plan and instructions.

Standing Desk

Build this fantastic DIY standing desk from wood and pipe as an easy DIY desk project. See this website to learn how it’s done. You also have an option to use a standing desk converter.

DIY Pipe Desk

Pipe and wood
Source: imgur.com

This is a unique DIY project that entails using stained support pipes and wood panels finished with polyurethane. The table consists of four 2 x 8 are joined using wood glue and a pocket hole for every screw (where needed). You can use 2.5″ screws to join the pieces. You can use a spray gun to stain your table.

DIY Office Desk

X leg
Tutorial: sawdustgirl.com

With this X-leg Office table plan, you can build with straightforward construction to create a sturdy, inexpensive work space. For about $30, it’s hard to beat. Follow the link to learn how it’s done.

Adjustable Standing Desk

Build this rustic DIY standing desk with an adjustable metal frame. Check out this website for the tutorial and plans.

DIY Built-In Desk

This is one of those projects that was born out of necessity. But we’re so glad because it’s an excellent and very useful project that we’re sure many of you will make. A desk like this will find a home in any room, be it the living room or the bedroom. Read the tutorial to see the complete details.

DIY Floating Desk

We love floating shelves. Why? Well because they seem to float and take up almost no room (ideal in a small space). What if we told you that you could easily transform an IKEA countertop into a neat little computer workstation table that looks like a floating shelf. Read the tutorial to get the full details.

DIY Wood Desk

DIY plans that will make your home office pop. Need a table to spice up your home office? Check out this website to see how it’s done.

DIY Sit Stand Desk

This table allows two people to work in separate areas, giving you plenty of desk space. Even though the height is designed for standing as you work, you can also get a couple of stool height chairs so that you can sit down whenever you feel tired. You are going to love how your wrap-around finally turns out.

DIY Wall-Mounted Desk

This table is attached to the wall via colorful sprayed brackets. The open shelving above gives the whole setup a built-in feel, and the desktop is stained to perfection and connected to the wall via L brackets.


This table was made unique by blow-torching a wood piece to add that look of depth and layering, then staining/sealing it. Adding some IKEA legs and a custom-glass top completes the look, making it look like a far more expensive piece of furniture that it cost to create.

DIY Industrial Desk

This table features multiple shelves, a deep desktop, and metal details for an industrial look. See this website to learn how it’s done.

DIY Industrial Pipe Desk

This desk is one of a kind as the crossover support and legs are made from plumbers, cast-iron pipes, and fittings. A simple wood top attached grommet style, and you have a chic industrial piece just ready to inspire.

DIY Home Office Desk

Inspired by Pottery Barn, ths piece is an easy build as it comes with a simple design. Other than looking amazing, this is a very functional desk. Even when you have to alter some of the measurements to meet your particular needs, the plan and instructions are easy to follow and very detailed. The instructions can be found here.

DIY Kids Desk

Learn to make a family computer station on a budget. Recycled drawer pedestals and doors make these desks unique and easy on the wallet. Follow the article to see how to do it.

DIY Vanity Desk


This is an excellent vanity for under $20 craft project. Watch the video tutorial to see the full guidance and instructions with the materials from Lowe’s.

DIY Farmhouse Desk

l-shaped farmhouse
Source: hometalk.com

The L-Shaped farmhouse wood desk is stunning. It not only looks rustic and chic but it also gives your office a complete look. The furniture speaks of excellent craftsmanship and is a real stunner. With a good stain, you have a piece with a lovely finish. If you want the DIY instructions, follow this link.

DIY Pallet Desk

When sitting on your sofa doesn’t work for you anymore, you need DIY inspiration. The pallet project may be the solution. First, decide how large you want your desktop to be as disassembling pallets can be tough. You can even use one of the pallets to make an extra shelf. Once done, try sanding it for that smooth finish.

DIY Pipe Computer Desk

Here are the steps to making your computer desk. Even if you’re not in need of a computer desktop, this same concept will work for an accent table, kitchen table, or coffee table. Check out the article to get the full plans.

DIY L-Shaped Desk

If you love making your home one step at a time, you will love this DIY corner desk. Again, if you want something spacious that will snugly fit into a corner, this is the desk to opt to.  With three sturdy legs, this desk will hold items of sizeable weight. You can find the clear plans here.

DIY Craft Desk

What an awesomely comfortable and sturdy DIY craft desk as a straightforward craft project. See the tutorial to learn how to do it.

DIY File Cabinet Desk

When all the kids have gone to school, you need some space where you can spend time, improving your craft skills. What about using file cabinets for the base of your DIY desk? First, you will need to get rid of most of the cabinet hardware, and then follow the instructions in this link to create a unique DIY project.

DIY Long Desk

With a vast giant workspace that measures 7-feet long and nearly 2-feet deep, you will have plenty of work surface area. You can opt to design shelves below to hold a printer or storage baskets. You will love the feel and industrial look of the hardware. This is ideal for your basement or garage work area. Follow the link for step-by-step instructions.

DIY Plywood Desk

Tutorial: hellonancy.co.uk

If you’re ready to spend some time covered in sawdust and paint, this is a great way to make your furniture — so much cheaper! You need to measure the available space and plan how big you want your desk. It can be made to sit up to 6 people.

DIY Desk with Drawers

repurposed drawers Credit: manhattan-nest.com

For this unique DIY desk, a nightstand becomes one of the sides supports for the desktop with the drawers adding storage. Two pieces of MDF glued and clamped together make the perfect top. A little bit of white paint and sealant on the table top, some IKEA legs to add for the other side support, and voila, a custom-made masterpiece!

DIY Rustic Desk

A pallet with that plank-board look attached to a side table unit is practical as well as aesthetically pleasing. The slatted insides provide the perfect dividers for items inside the desk. The painted knobby legs cool white contrast perfectly with the rustic wood pallet top, nails and all. This desk is the ultimate in repurposing rustic charm.

DIY Butcher Desk

butcher block
Tutorial: housebyhoff.com

The piping material is used for the legs, with casters added to the bottom for the ultimate convenient mobility. The butcher block desktop paired with the industrial legs makes this desk both warm and modern.

DIY Bookshelf Desk

Two white cube bookcases make the perfect support for this desk as it adds massive storage and decor styling potential for displaying items. An attached sheet of painted plywood makes up the desktop and can be painted any color to suit any decor.

DIY Reclaimed Wood

You need some reclaimed wood planks and hairpin legs (that you can pick up in a hardware store) to create this beautiful desk that looks rustic as much as it does mid-century. This combination of styles adds tons of home decor interest. Check out the tutorial on how to make it.

DYI Sawhorse Desk

This desk packs a big ‘wow’ factor for its functionality, as well as its chic industrial vibe. Saw horses make the ideal desk side supports, with wood planks added as lower shelving. Some complementary metal attached to a wood desktop marries the top and legs.

DIY Treadmill Desk

Make this treadmill desk for under $20 as a straightforward project. See the article to find out how it’s done.

DIY Desk Under $20

What a fantastic way to build a custom spacious and stylish desk. See the tutorial to learn how it’s done.

DIY 2×4 Desk

2x4 wood
Tutorial: ana-white.com

Use plywood and 2×4 wood to build a simple desk like this. Check out the tutorial to get all the details.

DIY Plank Desk

Build this amazing and inexpensive DIY shiplap desk for a straightforward project idea. It’s a great way to fit shiplap into your home decor too. Follow the tutorial to find out how to do it.

DIY Large Desk

large desk

What an amazing DIY giant home office desk the easy way. Check out this video to see the complete plans.

DIY Pipe Desk with Shelves

pipes and wood

This video shows how to build a fancy industrial style desk. Check out this tutorial for the entire details and instructions.

DIY Desk with Storage

This IKEA hack using Kallax shelves is perfect if you need a large computer desk or craft table but don’t want to spend hundreds of dollars. Follow the article to find out how to do it.

DIY Mid-century Desk

Tutorial: siamagazin.com

A corner desk can be a great way to maximize the space in your office, keep your office tidy with a desk organizer, and give yourself a larger worktop area. A modern L-shaped desk can bring loads of style and function to any office. Check out this website to see how to do it.

DIY U-Shaped Desk

Tutorial: lifehacker.com

Buying a desk isn’t always expensive, depending on where you shop and what you’re looking for, but if you want a desk that’s tailored to the way you work, is large enough for all of your gear and suits your tastes, you might consider building one. Follow this website for the full details and instructions.


What a fantastic DIY standing desk for $20 for a simple project. You’ll turn a regular desk into a standing desk entirely from PVC pipe. Follow the tutorial to get the complete guidance.

DIY Concrete Desk

This minimalist, cool desk comes with a DIY concrete desktop plus a simplified wooden frame that supports the legs. Being a pretty simple desk, you can opt to add shelves for some more storage space. The wood brings a bit of warmth to your area and keeps things looking natural. For more DIY tips on this desk, visit the tutorial.

DIY Wood and Pipe Desk

When everything at the shops is either in the wrong piece or wrong price, the best option is to build something on your own. Once you have assembled all the Custom Industrial Wooden Desk pieces, a single coat of poly is sufficient to give your project that perfect finish. This will give your space grace and class.

DIY Trestle Desk

Even from the standpoint of needed materials, this is an inexpensive desk, mainly if you got some scrap wood pieces lying around. The beauty of this vintage build is that even when it gets a scratch or ding, it only goes to give it a little more character. Follow this link for step-by-step pictures and instructions on how to build a Trestle Desk from lumber.

DIY Door Desk

Ever thought of putting that good door lying in your attic to good use? Why not transform it from a door to desk? Apart from the door, all you will need is a frame to hold it, and you are on your way to having your first from Door to Desk project.

DIY White Desk

This is a tutorial, more of a guideline on how to create a DIY Parsons Desk. This desk, when designed without the drawers might be a more straightforward project, so if you want a simpler version, you may want to consider it. If you’re going to design your own, the diagrams and photos in this tutorial will help a little.

DIY Hairpin Desk

Often in life, simplicity is best, and this desk is no exception. Some black hairpin legs added that sleek, minimalist look, while a cut piece of pine from the hardware store forms the desktop. Stained and sealed to perfection, this small desk makes the ideal surface for crafting, and it can be placed in a small space.

DIY Makeup Desk

The idea was conceived from a Home Depot Gift Challenge, and the creator is super happy with the outcome. You will be amazed at what you can do using that unused file cabinet in your office or home. Follow the detailed tips on how to put together your DIY File Cabinet desk on this link.

DIY Desk Top

If you want a large desktop space, this is precisely what the DIY Butcher Block Desk offers. This desk is a beast as it measures a substantial 72″ x 36″ x 1.5″ (length/width/depth). Assembling this desk is quite easy because you can do it in just five steps that are found by following the link.

DIY Computer Gaming Desk

This is an awesomely built gaming desk in a nice industrial pipe style. Every gamer’s dream. See the tutorial to learn how it’s done.

DIY Lap Desk

Such a lap desk is easy to make and it costs virtually nothing. Follow this website to learn how to do it.

DIY Studio Desk

Here’s how to build a studio desk for under $350. Read the article to see the full plans.

DIY Murphy Desk

THe murphy design is ideal for small spaces. This lovely contraption takes minimal space when used and serves decorative purpose when not used. Check out this website to learn how to do it.

DIY Fold Down Desk

fold down

This DIY wall-mounted desk drops down when you need it and folds away when you don’t, so it’s perfect for a small home or apartment. Check out the article to see the complete plans.

DIY Laptop Desk

Build a laptop desk using wood scraps for just under $2. Read the link to find out how it’s done.

DIY Student Desk

This lovely rustic stlye floating desk is perfect to inspire any student. Read the article to see how it’s done.

DIY Motorized Standing Desk

It might as well be a sitting desk as it is equipped with a motorized height adjustment device. See the article to see how it’s done.

DIY Art Desk

adjustable height and angle
Site: imgur.com

This art desk has an adjustable angle for comfort, and it folds down when not used to occupy as little space as possible. This project makes a wall-mounted table, so you may need to use a stud finder to attach it to the wall. Read this website to get the complete details.

DIY Closet Desk

Image: lowes.com

Why not hide your workspace in a closet? It can be nicely hidden away from the view. And it’s easily accessible when needed.

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