DIY Friday! 6 Fantastic Space-saving fold-down desks

For the safety-conscious, this DIY desk is an easy project that will help you de-clutter your home environment (and thus enhance the safety & comfortable feel of your living space). It’s also relatively straightforward, meaning even relative noobs can try it!

I’m off to purchase a new drill tomorrow, so I’ll post some updates of my progress in making this desk soon.

For this step-by-step, we’ll be looking at the simple but fantastic design by Ana White, whose DIY website should be bookmarked on your computer right now!

hidden deskDifficulty level: Moderate

Time taken: Varies from desk to desk


For all desks you will require a strong wood of your choice. Ask at your local hardware store or consider a strong plywood or supawood for this construction. Ensure that it is a strong wood that does not bend or warp. Aim for about 2cm or more thick.

Many of these designs call for hinges & hinge supports. Some require piano hinges with S-hooks & chains, while others make use of supports beneath the desk.

Then, screws, nails, glue, sandpaper, paint & primer are all regular essentials in all projects.

Also, don’t forget your drill, measuring tape, square (in some cases), spirit level & if you’re doing all the cutting yourself, your saw.

Notes: consider the ideal height for your desk. Often DIYers make them far too high or too low. The standard height is between 740mm & 760mm.

1. Simplest design: a piano hinge with removable supports underneath.

Here a simple piano hinge was attached to a piece of strong plywood & removable supports added. This isn’t the most stylish option (as you can see from the furnishings added, too!), but it’s quick, simple & practical.
You can find the tutorial here.
fold 3

2. Alternative: Outdoor simplicity

diy table


Here is an example of an outdoor folding table that can support social events or projects in your garden.

You can find the tutorial at SensiblySara.




3. Or you can get creative indoors:

Isn’t this one fantastic? And versatile, too. You can use it for storage & it’s easy to tidy up when not in use. This particular wall-mounted fold-away desk was designed as a children’s craft area & can be found on Ana White’s fantastic DIY blog.









4. The best Upcycling Desk Project:

There are so many uses for wooden pallets, but this is the most practical I’ve seen so far! With some piano hinges, window sashes & a lick of varnish, this pallet has been turned into practical shelf space & a small desk for home use. Find the tutorial at Thistlewood Farms.






5. Create a cool drinks area:

Home D-zine is a local DIY site which offers countless DIY projects. Check it out!

6. There’s an Afrikaans video tutorial from Pasella on this one:

When not in use, this desk folds up into a picture frame. Clever, huh? It looks complicated, but it’s quite easy to do.









Bonus: Simple & practical fold-out craft table:


These step-by-step instructions will have anyone building a table in no time.






Bonus (2): An ugly, but easy solution:

Stick this baby in your garage for that essential workshop space.








Here are some inspiration pictures to get your own ideas from (no tutorials attached, sorry!).









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