Hey there, MRL friends! It’s Angie from Knick of Time, back with a tutorial to turn a worn out old picnic table into a decorative farmhouse barn gate.
Earlier this month, I was at my parent’s house and my mom saw me taking a photo of the top of her old picnic table.
She wondered why in the world I wanted a photo of it, and I explained that I thought the chippy blue paint on the weathered wood looked so pretty, and I thought it would make a great photo backdrop (you can see how I used it here). She said she had planned to sand all the old paint off and repaint it, but now it was too old and unstable, so if I wanted it, I could have it. Heck yeah!
My husband took the table and one of the benches apart (I wanted to keep the other bench as-is), and we transported it on the back of our Jeep all the way from New Mexico to Illinois, so I could have fun with it.
I knew right away that I wanted to turn it into a decorative old barn gate that I could hang on my wall.
I see lots of old picnic tables at yard sales, but it could also be made with weathered fence pickets, or you could use brand new wood and give it a weathered paint finish (my tutorial is here), so it’s doable for anyone, and the best part is, it’s easy!
First I laid out all the boards that had been removed from the table to see how tall and wide the finished gate would be, and which pieces I would use for the cross braces.
My boards were 59″ tall, and I decided that would be a good height for the barn gate, so I didn’t cut them down at all.
If you don’t have space for a tall barn gate, just cut the wood down to your desired height.
Measure the width of all the boards lined up side by side, and cut 2 pieces of wood that size. These will be the top and bottom braces on the door.
Screw each long board at the top and bottom of both of the braces.
Next, cut another board to use as the diagonal cross brace.
I’m sure there’s some formula that involves math to get the angle for the diagonal brace, but I avoid math whenever possible, so we just laid the diagonal board in place, and used painter’s tape to mark the line where the cut needed to be made. It worked like a charm!
Screw the diagonal cross brace into the long boards (from the back, so the screws don’t show).
Attach a metal handle on one side of the gate.
It took less than an hour to finish, with very few tools and minimal woodworking skills.
It looks like it came straight out of an old barn and is perfect in my entryway.
So, don’t use your worn out old picnic table as firewood – repurpose it!
I hope you’ll drop in and visit me at Knick of Time to see some of my latest repurposed projects, including a window sill frame turned into a handled tray, overalls turned into a wall pocket, and an antique typewriter than became a charging station.
See you next month!