I bought two end tables and a coffee table from Craig’s List. The coffee table fit in the back seat of the car, but I had to disassemble the end tables to fit them into my trunk.

I painted the coffee table and have been using it in my living room. I tossed the pieces of the end tables into a corner of the garage, where they sat gathering dust for years.

With No.2 Sis trying to furnish a new house, I thought I’d put the end tables back together and see if she could use them.


1. Sort through “wood pile” to find all end table pieces.

wood pile

2. Spread pieces out on garage floor.

3. Look for hardware. Unsuccessfully.

4. Park Gypsy Blue (car) on driveway for the next couple of months while you procrastinate going to the hardware store.

5. Put top of end table and one leg in car.

6. Go to hardware store. Carry in table top and leg and announce loudly, “I need a screw.”

7. Have nice employee figure out size of screws required. Buy screws.

8. Go home and start assembling legs to table top, while holding 4 cross bars in place. Put on helmet to protect you from spinning, falling cross bars (optional).

9. Use crescent wrench to tighten hex head screws. When the hex head screws are too deep in their recessed holes, switch to box wrench.

10. When box wrench will no longer work, look for the socket wrench set you bought when you were ovulating. You always think you’re Superwoman when you’re ovulating.

11. Make sure socket wrench set is right-side up before opening. Oops.

end table, in progress

12. Finish tightening the screws.

13. Note that the cross bars are still spinning. They will require another type of screw.

14. You don’t want to return to the hardware store after the “I need a screw” episode. Search your large bin of assorted hardware (also bought while ovulating) to see if there’s anything that will work.

15. Yay! You have screws that will work. Screw down the cross bars.

16. Set table upright and add glass insert.

17. Ta-dah! You did it!


Assembled end table, and coffee table in use.

Assembled end table, and coffee table in use.

Stay tuned…

p.s. I shared this at Chic on a Shoestring.