How to Make a Card Table

Updated February 21, 2017

Card tables are great to have tucked away for those times when the kitchen or dinner table just won’t do for a friendly game of cards. Card tables are generally slightly padded, square and have folding legs. If you can’t find one to buy, or would rather save the money, making your own card table is not that hard, and you can impress all your card-playing fellows when you tell them you made the table yourself.

Cut a square of plywood with the saw, 30 inches by 30 inches for the table top. Cut the two-by-one lumber into four 28-inch lengths for the table legs. Sand the table top and legs.

Cut a 31 inch by 31 inch square of cardboard with the utility knife. Cut out an inch square from each of the corners. Cover the entire table top with glue, then centre the cardboard over the table top, making sure the corners are aligned with the cut-out places on the cardboard. Press down thoroughly to stick the cardboard to the table top.

Fold the edges of the cardboard over, and glue them to the sides of the table top, and the remaining ¼ inch of cardboard fold underneath the table top and glue in place. The cut-out squares from the corners of the cardboard will allow these folds to be made without the need for folding over the corners.

Lay out the faux leather or felt, wrong side up for the table covering. Place the table top centred over the covering, cardboard side down. Pull the centre of one side up and over the table top, stapling it onto the back edge. Pull the centre of the opposite side up and over in the same manner, stapling in place. Repeat with the other two sides, then staple the entire cover down, alternating sides as you go to get an even pull on the cover.

Fold the corners of the cover into a triangle, then lay flat and staple in place. Trim off any excess on the underside with the utility knife. Place a brass corner on each of the table top corners, then screw them in place.

Lay the table top wrong side up, then position the collapsible shelf brackets in each corner. The brackets should each be facing along a different side of the table, and be 1 inch in from the sides, exactly parallel with the table top edges. Collapsible shelf brackets are preferable to hinges, as most have locking mechanisms, so the legs will be secure when unfolded.

Drill and screw the brackets in place. Open the brackets, so that the collapsible portion is pointing upwards, then position a leg on the inside of the collapsible portion of the bracket. Make sure the leg is at right angles with the table top, then screw it into the bracket. Repeat with the remaining legs and brackets. The card table is now complete.

Things You'll Need

  • Plywood ¾ inch
  • Saw
  • Two-by-one lumber board
  • Sander
  • Glue
  • 1/8 inch thick cardboard
  • Utility knife
  • Staple gun
  • Faux leather/felt
  • 4 brass corners
  • Drill
  • Screws
  • 4 collapsible shelf brackets
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About the Author

B.T. Alo is media director, chief writer and editor for a U.S.-based marketing and consulting firm. He holds a bachelor's degree in business and communications. Alo's interests include business, investments, electronics, personal finance, health, communication, popular trends and travel.