–clamps (that extend to at least 12″)
–orbital sander (optional, but super helpful!)
-staining brush or rag
–1×12 lumber* (length at least 3.5′)
–sandpaper in 80 and 180 grit
–wire brads or finishing nails in .75″ length
–iron-on veneer edgebanding
Step One: Use a circular object or compass to draw a 10″ circle at the end of your lumber. Cut out the circle with a jigsaw. (Cut two circles if you’re making two stands.)
Never used a jigsaw? To use it, hold the wood firmly on top of a table or surface as you cut the overhanging edge with the jigsaw blade (use a fine cutting blade), stopping the saw to adjust which part of the wood overhangs as you go along. I like to cut with a jigsaw on a lower height surface like a bench, and use my body weight (pressing down with my knee) on top of the wood to keep it steady as I move the blade slowly across the surface.
Step Two: Cut the wood for the x-bases of the plant stands.
As I mentioned earlier, you can get two plant stands out of a 6′ long board. Cut out two circles, and the rest of the board length will give you the wood for the x-base. The measurements below all hinge on the diameter of the circle you cut, so determine that measurement first.
D– Diameter of your circle ( 10″)
A– Height of your x-base (I think higher than 6″ looks awkward.)
B– This measurement should be the diameter of your circle plus 2″.
C– This measurement should be half of measurement B minus half of your board thickness.
Step Three: Thoroughly sand all surfaces of your wood pieces. Begin with 80 grit sandpaper to shape the edges of the wood, particularly the edge of your wood circle. Then move up to 120 grit to sand out scratch marks from the lower grit sandpaper. Then, finish with 180 grit sandpaper to make it nice and smooth. If you do not take time to properly sand your wood, it won’t take the stain nicely and will be blotchy and rough after staining.
Step Four: Use wood glue to assemble the x-base of your stand, which are measurements B + C + C from step two. Only use wood glue on unstained wood, as stained wood will not absorb the wood as it should, decreasing the strength of the glue. If your wood is already stained at this point, use something like Gorilla Glue instead.
Step Five: Clamp together the x-base tightly, and immediately wipe away all wood glue that seeps out of the seams. Any visible wood glue will repel stain and appear yellow. It is very difficult to sand away.
Step Six: After the wood glue has dried, glue and affix the circular piece on top of the x-base. Clamp the top into place and, if desired, use finishing nails to add further strength to the finished piece. If you’re clamping the pieces together with wood glue on unfinished wood, however, I believe the nails aren’t completely necessary to the stability of the plant stand.
If you choose to use nails on your plant stand, use a nail setter or something similar to tap the finishing nails beneath the surface of the wood and cover the hole with stainable wood filler (sanding it smooth after it dries).
Step Seven: Finish the wood as you desire. If you use stain as I did, I recommend finishing with polyurethane to protect the wood from inevitable water splashing. To properly finish the wood, spray with two light coats of poly, then sand with 0000 grade steel wool, and finish with one last coat of poly. This will smooth down the roughness of the little wood hairs that stick up when the wood is moistened by the initial coats of poly.
If you choose to use paint, I recommend spraying with one coat of primer, lightly sanding with 400 grit wet sandpaper to smooth down the rough wood hairs that stick up when the wood is moistened by the primer, and then spraying with one last coat of primer. Then finish with as many light coats of your finish color as needed.