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Do-It-Yourself Floating Concrete Desk

DIY Office Built-in Bookcases Series

  1. Part 1 : Planning
  2. Part 2: Framing
  3. Part 3: Built-in Bench
  4. Part 4: Encasing and Painting
  5. Part 5: Floating Concrete Desk (Currently Reading)

Part Five

With this do-it-yourself floating concrete desk, your home office will never look like you DIYed it. Which is exactly what the Hubster and I wanted. By creating this concrete desk ourselves, we were able to really add the modern industrial aesthetics that we were planning for our office.

Supplies:

  • Melamine board
  • Measuring tape
  • Circular saw
  • L-brackets
  • Wood screws
  • Drill
  • Painter’s tape
  • Caulk
  • Olive oil
  • Concrete mix
  • Mixing tub
  • Mortar hoe
  • Concrete color
  • Wire remesh
  • Mason trowel
  • 2×4
  • Concrete float
  • Concrete patch
  • Orbital sander
  • Concrete sanding pads
  • Iron supports
  • Lag bolts

Why Concrete?

Well originally, the Hubster really wanted to have concrete counters in our home. Since our builder wouldn’t allow us to do that, (let’s get real it wasn’t even an option) the Hubster was determined to do it somewhere in the Farmhouse.

So once we had our office built-ins started we felt that a concrete floating desk would be the perfect addition to this space. The Hubster and I had never built a desk top out of concrete before so we knew this would be a little outside of our comfort zone. But with a few other DIY tutorials out there, we found what worked and what didn’t. So just learn from our mistakes because it will save you time…promise.

Cutting the Melamine

After purchasing your melamine board, you will want to use a circular saw to cut the melamine board to your desired size. We did this the same way as we did in Part Four with the MDF boards. The only difference between the two was this one was on the driveway instead of the porch. You guys… that board is heavy. There was no way I was going to be able to help the Hubster lift that board alllll the way to the porch.

Building the Form

Using the pieces that you cut, you will build a form. I promise, you will want to use L-brackets. Just trust us. We first tried only using wood screws, but we were having a hard time keeping the pieces from splitting. The L-brackets were the perfect solution. You’ll then want to put the form on top of another melamine board and secure with L-bracket so that your form will be secure.

Prepare the Form

Proper preparation prevents poor performance. And in this case, this part is extremely important.

We made sure to cut the rewire mesh to the appropriate size using wire cutters. Be careful! The wire remesh is sharp!

Once the remesh was cut, we needed to fix the slight discrepancies on the sides of the form and joints. You will want to make sure to seal those with caulk. The problem though is that caulk and cement don’t mix well. So you’ll want to put painters tape on both sides to make sure that the caulk line is as small as possible.

Once the seams and joints of the form have been caulked and have dried, you will remove the painter’s tape and heavily coat the form and sides with olive oil.

Gettin’ that Concrete

Before we mixed the concrete, we made sure we had the appropriate supplies readily available. Using a mixing tub, we added the concrete mix. On the side, we added water to the concrete color in a bucket. Once the color was ready, we poured the color into the mixing tub and added the remaining water the concrete mix needed. We used a mortar hoe to mix the concrete to the right consistency.

Pour the Concrete

Once the concrete had the right consistency, using a mason trowel we poured the concrete into the form. You will want to make sure to only fill the form half way at this point. Make sure that the concrete is smooth and add the wire remesh for support in the middle. Then you will fill the rest of the form, pack the concrete down and, level off with a 2×4. At this time you are supposed to use an orbital sander to remove any air bubbles. However, with where our form was placed our orbital sander was just not working…meaning concrete was being flung. So we just hoped and prayed that things would be ok. Using a concrete float you will smooth out the concrete. Let the concrete dry for the recommended time on concrete package.

Final Cosmetic Touches

Since this was our first concrete experience, we didn’t know how smooth our concrete desk would turn out. After we removed the form, we found that we had a few holes that needed to be patched. So instead of trying to mix the concrete patch to match the desk we just decided to make enough patch to cover the entire top. We added the concrete color to the concrete patch and applied to the desk.

After allowing that to dry, we sanded the concrete with our orbital sander, starting with a lower grit concrete sanding pad and then worked up to the higher grit concrete sanding pad to create a smooth even finish.

Prepare the Support System

Because of the weight of the concrete desk, you’ll want to make sure to have iron supports to create the floating feature. In order for the iron supports to support the concrete desk, you’ll have to make sure that the iron supports are attached to the studs of your wall. Using lag bolts, you will attach the iron supports to the studs on your desired wall.

Place the Concrete Top

To secure the concrete top to the top of the iron supports, you will want to caulk the the iron supports and place the concrete desk in position.

And wallah! You have a perfectly floating concrete desk. We plan on doing another similar concrete top shortly. So you’ll have to be patient and wait for that.

But in the mean time, I have a few exciting posts coming in the next couple of weeks that you won’t want to miss! One of them is the no-sew bench cover you see in the back…. Since we are always working on new things at the Farmhouse, I like to share snippets of these projects and other parts of my everyday life craziness on my Instagram account. Come stop by!

DIY Office Built-in Bookcases Series

  1. Part 1 : Planning
  2. Part 2: Framing
  3. Part 3: Built-in Bench
  4. Part 4: Encasing and Painting
  5. Part 5: Floating Concrete Desk (Currently Reading!)

DISCLAIMER

The power tools listed above are dangerous and if not used properly can result in fatal injures or death. If you are not comfortable using these power tools please consult someone who does.

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