How To Make A Live Edge Hairpin Leg Desk/Table

How To Make A Live Edge Hairpin Leg Desk/Table

Hairpin table legs have become increasingly popular. They add an industrial, modern touch to any decor, but can be combined with natural materials such as live edge slabs of wood to satisfy the more traditional tastes. I see the hairpin legs on all sorts of tables as you can get them in different heights. Below, I’m going to explain how to make a live edge hairpin leg desk/table which I think blends nicely with nearly any decor theme, including my modern farmhouse decor.

Unfinished Hairpin Leg Desk

The Idea

I’ve been wanting to create something with hairpin legs for awhile but have been holding off because I really haven’t had a need or space  for another piece of furniture. I’ve been patiently waiting until I could find just the right project.

I was at a vintage market/craft fair recently and one of the booths had some slabs of live edge pine. I was instantly captivated. I don’t know what it was, but I knew one of those slabs was coming home with me! That was another thing on my list of things I wanted to create…a live edge wood project of some sort or another.  

As my friend was browsing a nearby booth filled with baby goods, I was standing there in a daze lightly running my hand back and forth across the pine plank. I must have looked far away because she was snapping me to attention after a few minutes!

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Well, I wasn’t really in a daze, I was mentally creating a project: a live edge hairpin leg desk!  

Hairpin Legs and Live edge pine slab materials

I built my hubby’s desk last year, but I don’t use it and we don’t really have a separate space for another desk for me. I typically end up on the couch with my little lap desk and that’s where I work, but I have wanted my own space to create my projects and I figured this would be perfect!

It would be just the right size to fit in my master bedroom in the little nook next to my entertainment center. I even had the perfect chair for it (I couldn’t find my exact chair but it looks just like this except for the button details).

So, I chose my favorite slab out of the stack and hauled it home and I ordered a set of hairpin table legs and some Danish Oil from Amazon…

Bringing My Vision To Life

The Live Edge Hairpin Leg Desk/Table DIY


  • Slab of milled wood (I used pine with a live edge finish)
  • Set of 4 – 28” tall hairpin legs
  • 1-1 ¼” screws
  • Palm sander & 180 grit sand paper
  • Drill & drill bit (slightly smaller in width than your screws)
  • Tape Measure
  • Danish Oil
  • Lint-free rags
  • Rubber gloves
  • Paint brush

Step 1 – Measuring where the hairpin legs would go

Hairpin Legs measurements

This was a bit tricky because the slab of pine wasn’t a perfect rectangle with its live edge. So I did a few measurements and found the center. From there, I measured out the same distance to each end.

I couldn’t just measure 2” in from the corners and put the legs there; one end of the slab was wider than the other. So, I did a bit of eyeballing to determine where I wanted the legs, but we used the measurements to make sure the legs were lined-up with one another. Once I was happy with the leg placement, I marked the  pre-cut holes of the hairpin legs so I could easily find where my screws needed to go.

Setting up the hairpin legs on the pine slab


Step 2 – Securing the hairpin legs

Once I’d marked the placement of the screw holes, I moved the legs out of the way and using a drill bit a little smaller in width than my screws, I pre-drilled my screw holes just to make it a bit easier and less likely that I’d split the wood slab.

Hairpin Leg Pre-drilled HolesHairpin Leg attachment

Then I attached each leg to the underside of the slab with 1 ¼” screws.

Step 3 – Prepping the wood slab

Since the slab had already been milled, it was fairly smooth, so I took some 180 grit sandpaper on my palm sander and did a quick sanding all over.

Sanding the Live Edge Wood Project

After sanding, I brushed off as much dust as I could and then dampened a rag and wiped off any extra debris.

Step 4 – Finishing/sealing the live edge hairpin desk/table

Wearing rubber gloves, I poured some danish oil on the slab and used my paint brush to spread it out quickly, then I rubbed it lightly with a clean, dry rag. It was soaking in pretty quick, so I waited about 10 minutes after doing the first coat and then went back in and did the 2nd coat.

Danish Oil Live Edge Slab

I did the 2nd coat a little thicker and let it pool a bit more on the area where there were knots in the wood as they tended to absorb the oil faster. After that dried for about 20 minutes, I wiped it down with a clean rag and we carried it inside to set it in place. I let the danish oil dry for 24 hours before putting anything on top of the desk.

I chose danish oil instead of stain because it’s easier to work with, dries super fast, and seals the wood too. I may need to do another coat every year or so, but it was a nice alternative that is fairly transparent and really allows the natural beauty of the pine to show through. Even though I used a dark walnut danish oil, mixed with the light pine, it came out to a really nice shade.

I love how it turned out! And I finally have my own little space to work!

Finished Live Edge Hairpin Leg Desk

Do you have a love for live edge wood projects or hairpin leg tables? Why not combine the two and make your own version of this live edge hairpin leg desk/table?

I have seen similar entry tables/desks going for $300 and up online. Why pay those prices when you can totally ‘make it for less’…this only cost me $165 dollars and took about an hour!

Until next time,

Into DIY signature

P.S. – If danish oil isn’t your thing, check out my tutorial on How To Stain & Seal Your Wood Projects

Pin This…

Hairpin Leg Desk with Live Edge Wood Top

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