DIY Kids Picnic Table

Tiny tea parties, giant smiles! Build a kid-sized picnic table in an afternoon with this easy-to-follow plan. Perfect for hours of outdoor fun.

DIY kids picnic sitting on grass in a yard

Are your little ones dreaming of summertime crafts and backyard tea parties? Turn those dreams into reality in just an afternoon. I’ll show you how to build a charming kid-sized picnic table, the perfect spot for laughter, snacks, and memories that will last a lifetime.

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What Wood Should You Use?

Pine: I used pine 2×4s to make my picnic table. Pine is affordable, but it’s not rot-resistant. I recommend applying a protective finish like paint or spar urethane to extend its lifespan. For additional protection, consider placing your pine picnic table on a covered porch and storing it indoors during the off-season.

Related: Spar Urethane vs Polyurethane (Differences + Which to Use)

Sideview of a DIY kid-sized picnic table

Pressure-treated lumber: Pressure-treated lumber, or PT, is a popular option for outdoor projects as it resists rot and insect damage. However, even though the chemicals used to treat it these days are supposedly less toxic, I prefer not to use it for my outdoor furniture projects.

Pine and pressure-treated: If you use pine, the legs will rot the quickest because they will absorb moisture from the ground. Alternatively, you could use pressure treated lumber for the legs and make the rest of the table with pine. 

Cedar: Cedar is a naturally rot-resistant wood that’s a great choice for outdoor furniture. While it has a beautiful grain and weathers well over time, it often costs more than pine.

Closeup of a handmade kid-sized picnic table made with 2×4s

What Tools Do You Need?

I used two basic tools to make my kid-sized picnic table:

  • Miter Saw
  • Drill

Optional: The 2×4s have round edges, but the cut edges are square and sharp, which could be a safety hazard for kiddos. To make them safer and give the project a finished look, I rounded them using a router and a roundover bit. If you don’t have a router, you can also smooth the edges with sandpaper.

Sideview of a DIY kids picnic table seat and tabletop

How to Make a DIY Kid-Sized Picnic Table

Printed Plan

Get the PDF plan here (includes detailed instructions, measurements, and bonus tips)

Materials

Tools

  • Tape Measure
  • Kreg Multi-Mark
  • Miter Saw
  • Drill
  • Countersink Drill Bit
  • Router and Roundover Bit (optional)

Step 1. Make the Leg Assemblies

The legs are four pieces of wood cut to length with parallel angles on each end.

To make these cuts, I adjusted my miter saw and made a cut on one end of a board.

Cutting an angle on the end of a 2×4

On the long edge, I marked the length. 

Marking a 2x4 for length with a tape measure

I moved the board, aligning the mark with the blade. I also set a stop so I could cut the remaining legs to the same length.

Related: Why Can’t I Make Accurate Cuts? (& How to Fix It!)

Setting a stop on a miter saw workstation

With the workpiece in position, I made the cut.

Cutting a DIY kids picnic table leg to length

I cut two pieces of wood to length for the seat supports.

Following the diagram in the printed plan, I marked the location for angles, which will remove the sharp corners and give the project a polished look.

Marking the end of a 2x4

After adjusting my miter saw, I cut an angle on each end.

Cutting a 45-degree angle on the end of a 2x4

I cut two pieces of wood to length for the table supports.

Following the diagram, I marked the location for angles and cut one on each end.

To ensure the picnic table was super smooth and splinter-free for little ones, I sanded all the parts before assembling them.

Sanding parts for a DIY kid-sized picnic table

The lumber has round edges, but the cut edges are square and sharp, which could be a safety hazard for kiddos. To make them safer and give the project a finished look, I rounded them using my trim router and a roundover bit. If you don’t have a router, you can also smooth the edges with sandpaper.

Rounding over the end of a board with a trim router

To help mark the screw locations that attach the legs to the seat and table supports, I followed the same method I used to make the legs, cutting two pieces of scrap wood to length.

I placed the scrap wood on the leg and marked it using a pencil.

Marking the location for countersink holes using a piece of scrap wood

On the lines, I measured in on each side.

Measuring for a screw hole location

Using an awl, I made a starting point for the drill bit.

Related: What is an Awl? (& How to Use It)

Making a starting point for a drill bit with an awl

Following the diagram in the printed plan, I measured from each side of the seat and table support’s top edge. These marks will help position the legs on the supports.

Measuring from each side of the seat and table support's top edge to help position the picnic table legs on the supports

To eliminate guesswork when positioning the legs, I followed the same method I used to make them, cutting two pieces of scrap wood to length and clamping them to the bottom of each leg.

Clamping scrap wood to the bottom of each leg

I positioned the leg on the seat support’s mark and clamped it.

Then, I clamped the table supports to the top of the legs.

Using a countersink bit, I drilled a hole at each mark.

Related: How to Use a Countersink Bit

Drilling a countersink hole in the picnic table leg

I attached the legs to the supports using exterior wood screws.

Attaching the legs to the supports with wood screws

Repeat for the second leg assembly.


Step 2. Attach the Stretcher

Following the diagram in the printed plan, I marked the location for two holes that connect the seat support to the stretcher, and made a starting point for the drill using an awl. 

Marking the location for holes that connect the seat to the leg assemblies

Using my miter saw, I cut one piece of wood to length for the stretcher that connects the leg assemblies.

I centered the stretcher on the legs and clamped it in position.

TIP: I used a speed square to ensure the stretcher was square to the seat supports.

Centering the stretcher on the leg assemblies and clamping it in position

Using a countersink bit, I drilled a hole at each mark.

Drilling a countersink hole in the seat support

I attached the stretcher using wood screws.

TIP: I had to reposition the clamp to access the second screw location.

Attaching the seat support to the stretcher with wood screws

Step 3. Attach the Braces

The leg assemblies are stabilized with two braces. After adjusting my miter saw, I made a cut on one end.

Cutting an angle on one end of the brace

I flipped the workpiece, measured on the long edge, and made a mark.

Marking the brace's length

With the workpiece in position, I cut the second angle.

Cutting the brace to length

I repeated this step to make the second brace.

I positioned the brace on the assembly and drilled a countersink hole.

Drilling a countersink hole in the brace

Using exterior wood screws, I attached the brace to the leg assembly.

Attaching the brace to the leg assembly  using a wood screw

I repeated this step on the other end, connecting the brace to the stretcher and attaching the second brace.


Step 4. Attach the Top

The top and seat boards are the same length. Using my miter saw, I cut nine pieces of wood to length, five for the top and four for the seats.

Following the diagram in the printed plan, I marked the ends for countersink holes that I’ll use to attach them to the leg assemblies.

Marking the location for countersink holes on the top and seat boards

I centered the middle board on the leg assembly and clamped it in position.

Centering the middle tabletop board on the leg assemblies

Then, I drilled countersink holes at each mark and attached it using exterior wood screws.

Attaching the tabletop board to the leg assemblies using wood screws

I repeated this step to attach the remaining table top boards.

TIP: The outside boards have 45-degree angles to remove the sharp corners.


Step 5. Attach the Seats

Using the remaining boards from Step 4, I cut 45-degree angles to remove the sharp outside corners.

I positioned the seat boards, clamped them to the seat support, and drilled countersink holes at each mark.

Using exterior wood screws, I attached them to the supports.

Attaching the seat boards to the leg assemblies with wood screws

That’s it. With a coat of paint or sealer, your picnic table is ready for all the fun – crafts, tea parties, and more!


Get Your Step-by-Step Plan

DIY kids picnic table in a lawn

Includes:

  • List of tools and materials
  • Complete measurements (in inches)
  • Easy-to-follow instructions
  • Step-by-step photos
  • Detailed diagrams

Get Your Plan Now!


Video

Watch now, and I’ll show you step-by-step how to make a DIY kid-sized picnic table.


Final Thoughts

With a few basic tools, you can create a backyard centerpiece for countless memories. Imagine the laughter, snacks, and stories your little ones will share around this table.

Don’t wait. Get your PDF plan (including the detailed instructions and measurements) now!

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