Learn in this article how to build a standing desk yourself. Very simple and uncomplicated made of wood. I am passionate about building my furniture from old materials myself. That’s why I built my new standing desk myself, because I can work really well and concentrated while standing. I will now show you how you can build your standing desk yourself in just a few steps. Made from old oak wood that would otherwise have ended up in the fireplace. Here we go!

Why build a Standing Desk Yourself?

First of all, I would like to give you the reasons why you should build your standing desk yourself and then work more often standing up. The main advantages for me are:

  • I work more focused and attentive at a standing desk
  • Old material (here: garden fence posts + oak panel) is recycled and not burned
  • When standing, I don’t get tired so quickly and can work on my projects longer
  • I can design the self-made standing desk the way I want it
  • I never have back pain at a standing desk because I’m standing straight
  • By building the standing desk myself, I can also show you and other readers something
  • It’s just cool to be skilled in crafting or to learn

You don’t think you can work more concentrated while standing? Then try it out and let yourself be instructed otherwise. 🙂 Many people work on height-adjustable standing desks because they want to fight back problems or simply want to work more attentively. So much for the basics of a standing desk. Now I will show you step by step the instructions for how to build your standing desk yourself.

1. Sketch your standing desk

First of all, you simply make yourself clear how your self-standing standing desk should look in the end. A lot of wood, a lot of metal? What do you like to? I chose wood and maybe I’ll add some metal afterwards. The sketch for the standing desk does not have to be a work of art. You should know the following things before you build your standing desk yourself:

  • Dimensions: length x width x height (the height must be adjusted individually for each)
  • Material: wood (oak, beech etc.), metal etc.
  • Special features: compartment for pens, drawers etc.

Since I live and think minimalistically, I also decided to build a minimalist standing desk. The standing desk should basically consist of wood and have dimensions of L110 x W35 x H111 cm. The height is of course very important. You should be able to work straight and comfortably on it. Test a bit beforehand at what height that is the case and include it in your sketch. Now you need material, of course as sustainable as possible.

2. Material for the standing desk

Anyone can buy new. But I wanted to build a sustainable standing desk myself, using old material again. In the spirit of the zero waste lifestyle. The necessary material was still in my home in our shed. A cool rustic oak plank and old fence posts that would otherwise have turned into firewood. Later, I had a metal worker cut two metal plates to connect the feet of the standing desk to the table top.

If you don’t find what you’re looking for at home, I recommend the following sources of material for your own upcycled standing desk:

  • Storage shed at the neighbors
  • Scrap yards near you
  • Old pallets, boxes etc. are often found on train tracks or small train stations.
  • Carpenter – A lot of material falls off here that can still be used
  • … the possibilities are endless, ask yourself a bit.

For editing I still needed:

  • Coarse sandpaper e.g. K80
  • Fine sandpaper e.g. K120
  • Cork sanding block
  • Wooden brush
  • Wood glaze

When you have everything together, the foundation is laid so that you can build your own wooden standing desk. Now it’s time for material processing!

3. Clean the desk and grind the standing desk

Before you either cut your material for the standing desk yourself or take it to the carpenter, you should first check it for worms, dirt, nails and screws. For me that meant: As soon as I had checked all my woods, I sanded the wood again briefly so that any excess but solid paint disappears. Before that, I had cleaned the wood with the pressure washer and let it dry briefly. The carpenter then makes up the rest by planning and cutting. Because the next step is to get a beautifully standing desk.

4. Plan & cut the standing desk material

Exact machines are required so that the self-made standing desk made of wood really stands straight afterwards and does not wobble. The best way to do this work is with a carpenter near you. First, the table surface of the desk must be planed smooth. A few joints remain, but that looks cool. Nothing is more boring than a straight Ikea desk. Next up are the legs for the standing desk. They are cut to the exact same height and planed to the same thickness. The next important step in the instructions for building a standing desk yourself is done. Home!

5. Sand the standing desk wood smooth

At the present time, the planed wood is still sharp-edged. That’s why you grab coarse sandpaper (80s) and walk with the paper over all woods and especially their edges. Of course, you should make the surface of your desk top smoother than the bottom. Try not to grind as much on the underside of the standing desk so that the surface remains nice and level and the table doesn’t wobble afterwards. Exactly the same applies to the bottom side of the feet and their side lying against the surface. After sanding everything with the coarse sandpaper, you can rework the wood with such fine sandpaper (K120).

6. Clean & dust wood for painting

It is straightforward. If you want to paint your self-made standing desk in the next step, you should first remove the dust from the sanding. A dampened towel is sufficient. When you have finished your cut, sanded wood so far, you can finally paint it in the next step. Soon you will have built your own standing desk. Cool, isn’t it?

7. Paint & dry standing desk material

The color. Well, that’s really a matter of taste. There are thousands of ways to paint your self-made standing desk. I am a walnut fan (for example, have push-up handles made of walnut wood) and therefore decided to use a natural walnut laser. Here you can get a selection of wood glazes.

Simply place the feet and surface of the standing desk on old boxes so that they are slightly higher and can dry from anywhere. Then grab a wooden brush  and your wood glaze and get started. Depending on the room temperature, you can repaint the same day or the next day. You should always do this so that the color is evenly distributed and no drops are visible. The instructions for building a standing desk are coming to an end. Now everything has to be screwed together.

8. Screw the standing desk together

The feet and surface of the standing desk have been painted, now of course they have to be connected. At best, the connection should not be visible with a normal view of the desk. In order to complete the instructions for the standing desk myself, I had two sturdy metal plates cut by a well-known metal worker so that the plates fit exactly under the wooden table top without protruding. Holes are drilled into the outside of the metal plate, with which the metal plates are subsequently attached to the tabletop. Before that, you have to drill 4 holes at the points where the metal plate should rest on your feet. This gives the self-made standing desk a lot of stability, because you shouldn’t underestimate how high the table is.

To summarize again briefly: First you screw the feet onto the metal plates. Then you screw the metal plates (with your feet) onto the table surface. Finished. Transporting the table is also easy because you can simply unscrew the two parts of the foot and screw them back on at the place of use.

9. The Self-Made Standing Desk!

How do you like the table? Uncomplicated, minimalistic and sustainable? Me too! As soon as I have the standing desk with me in Berlin (I built it in my hometown), I will take a nice photo of you with the standing desk in use. Possibly. I’m going to add a cool grid that can be used like a pin board. As soon as there is news, I will of course update this article. 🙂


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