DIY Floating Nightstands

floating nightstand live edge

Woodworking is my therapy… most days. I recently opened up about this on Instagram, but turning my therapeutic hobby into a business has been so amazing. But, it’s not often I get to build something nowadays without a looming deadline. So, this summer while I was on my break from my full time job, I decided to work on a project for me – a therapy project. Something to remind me why I started sharing my therapeutic hobby to begin with… and from that was born a set of floating nightstands with live edge drawers for our new apartment.

How To Build Floating Nightstands With Live Edge Drawers

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I am on this slow and steady process of turning the bedroom space in our new apartment into a cozy, homey space. I started a few weeks ago with a custom headboard (which, I’m low-key obsessed with)… and now it was time to focus on adding some nightstands. Since we have a storage bed, I knew we needed something that could hang on the wall. But, we also needed something with storage (because you can never have enough storage). 

diy bedroom nightstand table

So, in walks in the idea to make a floating nightstand and give the drawer some pizazz (if that’s even still a word anyone uses anymore). In fact, I saw this live edge nightstand on Walmart’s website, and it totally inspired me to create something similar, but lose the resin pour and leave the void open as a handle instead.

I’m so stoked on this build! Here’s how I got it done.

What I Used:

squaring wood without a jointer

Miter Saw
Circular Saw
Pin Nailer
Sander & Sandpaper
Table Saw
Nail Gun
Pin Nailer
Pocket Hole Jig
Wood Clamps
Painter’s Tape
Tape Measure
Safety Gear

(1) Live Edge Slab *
 (1) 1 x 8 x 12′ Walnut Board *
(1) 1 x 5 x 6′ Poplar Boards *
(1) 1 x 6 x 4′ Poplar Board *
5/8″ Dowel (Optional)
Hangman French Cleat Hanger
(use code “DIYHUNTRESS15″ for 15% off)
1 ½” Wood Screws
1 ¼” Pocket Hole Screws
1 ¼” Brad Nails & Pin Nails
Wood Glue
Wood Filler
Wood Finish
Wood Wax

* For 1 Nightstand


Overall Dimensions

Top @ 12 x 18 ½” **
Bottom @ 12 x 18 ½” **
(2) Sides @ 8 ½ x 12 **
Back Panel @ 6 ½ x 16 ¾ *
Drawer Front @ 6 ½ x 16 ¾ *
Drawer Back @ 4 ½ x 15″
Drawer Sides @ 4 ½ x 9 ¾
Drawer Bottom @ 8 ¼ x 15″

* Drawer front & back panel measurements are preliminary measurements that were cut to exact size during the build. Always make sure to double check the measurements of your particular build before cutting your pieces to size.

** Indicates parts that are made from 2 boards being laminated together. Make sure to check out tutorial for more information before building.

The Steps:

1. First step for me was to break my material down into manageable parts. To do this, I cut my pieces close to their final size on my miter saw (I kept them a little long to trim later). At this point, I only focused on the pieces I was using for the nightstand assembly. We’ll focus on the back panel and drawer later.

measuring wood with tape measurer

2. My lumber was not milled, so I ran it through my planer until it was flat and smooth.

running walnut through surface planer

3. Next, I brought the pieces to my table saw and ripped off the edges to create straight, clean edges for glue up.

squaring wood without a jointer

4. After the wood was prepped, I began to glue them into their panels (2 top panels, 2 bottom panels, 4 side panels).

laminating wood panels with glue and clamps

5. After leaving the panels clamped overnight, I came back the next day and ran them back through my planer and cut them down to their final dimensions, making sure to add a mitered corner to any piece that will be assembled to create the nightstand box.

cutting mitered joints on the tablesaw

6. Next, I began to glue the pieces together to create my nightstand boxes. I did this by aligning the pieces with painter’s tape, and then glueing and clamping everything together.

how to join mitered box corners with glue

how to clamp waterfall edges

7. Next, it was time to work on the back panel. I cut the panel with my miter saw and then attached it to the back of the nightstand using pocket holes screws and wood glue. I made sure to inset the panel into the nightstand enough for the french cleat system to fit.

attaching back panel to nightstand

8. Once the nightstand itself was assembled, it was time to build the drawer. I started by laminating two pieces of 1 x 8″ poplar together to create two drawer bottoms.

how to make a wood drawer bottom

9. Next, I cut the pieces for my drawer box from 1 x 5″ poplar.

cutting drawer boxes with miter saw

10. Once the drawers were cut, I assembled the drawer box using wood glue and screws that I countersunk into the wood. I then hid these screw openings with 5/8″ dowels and wood glue.

how to build a drawer box

11. I then attached the bottom of the drawer inside the box using brad nails.

installing drawer bottoms with nails

12. Next, I cut my live edge slabs to size to fit in the drawer box as drawer fronts.

trimming live edge slab with circular saw

13. I then temporarily attached the drawer front to the box using pin nails.

temporarily attaching drawer face

Next I pulled the drawer out, and then permanently attached the drawer front using wood screws from the inside of the drawer face.

attaching drawer face with screws

14. Next, I installed some wooden drawer pulls to stop the drawer from tipping out when in use. I learned this technique from John Peters’ YouTube video!

making drawer slides from wood

15. At this point it was time for finishing! I first filled any holes with wood putty and then sanded the piece.

filling voids in wood with wood putty

16. I then applied an oil-based wood finish.

finishing wood with oil based finish

17. After letting the nightstands dry overnight, I came back the next day and installed the hanging system. I opted for this really awesome french cleat system from Hangman Products that I screwed directly into the back of the nightstand.

hangman products french cleat installation

18. I then installed the nightstand in our apartment by using the other half of the cleat system with a built-in level. SO EASY.

installing hangman french cleat on wall

19. I then hung up the nightstands!

walnut floating nightstand

I am SO stoked with the way these nightstands turned out. They just have so much character and are so practical for our new space! 

diy bedroom nightstand table

P.S. How awesome are these battery powered lamps!?

I hope you all loved this project as much as I did! If so, make sure to Pin It for later!

But, until next time friends! Happy DIY’ing!

Sam Raimondi

Sam is a full time psychologist and part time content creator from Long Island, New York.




  • Jessica

    I love, love, love these! We don’t have the tools or space to make these, sadly. Any chance you’d make and sell? We are in the market but nothing compares to what you’ve made! Kudos!

    • Paula VanDalen

      I agree with Jessica…no tools or room to make this. Can you make to sell?

  • Caroline

    Please please sell it to us!!!

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