Mid-century modern (MCM) plant stands have been all over design blogs for a while now, and admittedly, I fell for them hard. They’re readily available at stores big and small, but the common theme is that they’re relatively expensive, ranging from $130-250+ (without the pot) for an average size and we needed quite a large one. They were never going to make it into my house at that price point – so we did what we do: we built our own.
This DIY is very, very cheap, relatively simple, and able to be customized for the size of pot or planter you may already own.
What you’ll need:
– 1” wood dowels
– 1”x2” pine board
– miter saw
– Kreg jig
– wood glue
– wood stain (optional)
– wipe-on poly (water-based)
1. Cut the dowels to the desired height. We wanted ours to overlap our pot quite a bit, not line up with the ridges on it, and not be the same height as the windowsill it would sit beside. We ended up using two 4” dowels and cutting them in half (remember that cutting them takes 1/8” away). The miter saw makes this smooth and easy, but you could always even cut the dowels at the store with their handsaw if you don’t own the tools.
2. Measure your pot’s diameter and give yourself an extra ½” for where the four posts will be. Use that measurement to cut your two pine boards to size. So, if your pot has a 6” base, you’ll want the board to be 6 ½”. Also, be sure that if your pot has a bigger top than bottom, you use the top’s diameter. If you’re using a square-ish pot, like we did, you’ll measure corner to corner rather than straight across.
3. Attach the two pine boards in a + shape. You can choose to do this with a notch, which would be sturdier, or you could do as we did and cut the one board in half and attach it to either side. We used a Kreg jig to make the holes and then applied wood glue and screwed the sides into each other.
4. Figure out where you want the bottom of the + to sit on the dowel and mark it. Measure the rest of the dowels and mark them at the same spot. Line up the edge of the + sign and mark the top as well.
5. Then, using a file, shave out the space between the two lines. You will end up with a rectangular groove, about 1/8” deep. This is where the + will connect.
6. Make two holes with the Kreg jig on the inside (or one on the bottom and one on the top where the plant will cover, depending how clean you will want it to look and how much weight it will hold) of each board. Attach each end to the dowels one at a time with wood glue and screws.
7. Stand it up to make sure it is level and then stain it (if you so desire) and follow that up with a wipe-on poly. We left ours natural and swiped a water-based poly over it.
8. Put your pot on the stand and you’re done.
We sourced our “pot” from a thrift shop a few years back, thinking we’d clean it up and use it outside or on a porch. Well, that never happened, but I think it’s even better in our dining room – paint drips and all. Oh, and the whole thing cost us less than $4 so I can’t complain about its imperfections.
– M. Ray Hall