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Hairpin Legs and Old Doors – From Simple to Elegant

cupboard door table with hairpin legs closeup

Hairpin legs offer the ability to make simple custom furniture that is unique, easy to make and beautiful. No matter what condition your door may be in, chances are it is still going to be functional and look amazing with a set of metal legs holding it up. The simplicity of our hairpin legs adds stability and style. Past customers have shown us the range of possibilities when turning an old door into a hairpin leg table.

Old doors–especially those with character–can have a set of modern furniture legs attached and they make a table. When you start looking you’ll be surprised how easy old doors are to find. You may even have one in your own house. But if you don’t they are a staple at most building material recycling and reuse locations. Or ask a friend! Maybe there is a basement or closet door you’re thinking of replacing. Closet doors come in a wide variety of sizes so they may be the best option if you’re looking for a smaller than average door-to-table project.

Keeping the door in its original condition gives the new table a classic look. The door can be refinished or clear coated for a bit more of an upgraded look. If you’re looking for something more refined, consider topping the table with glass or a two-part epoxy. And though we’ve mentioned our hairpin legs, there are lots of options. We’ve found many customers like pairing our tapered angle iron metal legs with their doors, or you could use custom bench legs scaled up to table size; it’s up to you!

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Small Hairpin Legs for Restoring Large Furniture

jerrud media console closeup with short hairpin legs

We offer a wide variety of hairpin legs – different styles, diameters, and heights. Our hairpin legs come in heights from 4-30″ inches tall. This leaves the maximum amount of usability for building custom furniture. It is common to think of building a coffee table or a dining room table with hairpin legs but the shorter legs are great too!

Our short hairpin legs are great options for large-bodied furniture such as desks and bureaus. Rebuilding a large piece of furniture often involves replacing the original legs. Over time wooden legs wear down and crack. It can be difficult to rehab a large piece of furniture if the legs are cracked and the connection points are worn. This type of furniture is perfect with short hairpin legs. The turn-of-the-century style of the hairpin leg compliments the classic look of older furniture. The legs perfectly compliment the solid construction and classic lines of antique style. Plus, these metal legs will not degrade with constant use and say, bumping with a vacuum cleaner. Many customers have rebuilt or refurbished old furniture with hairpin legs. They’ll work for desks and bureaus, but they’ve also been used for wet bars, shipping crates, and much more!


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DIY Furniture Ideas Using Hairpin Legs

Are hairpin legs intended to be used with a slab of wood? That’s one way to use hairpin legs but they need not be limited to that. We like to say creating a hairpin leg table is as easy as attaching them to an old door. But the possibilities are endless. Customers have used our legs to make hairpin leg furniture including desks, bureaus, and credenzas. Don’t let anything stifle your imagination. We’ve also seen old beer crates, luggage, and a butter press make amazing hairpin leg furniture.

Here are a few DIY furniture ideas our customers have come up with, now what should you do for your hairpin leg furniture? Anything you want! We offer a wide variety of heights, diameters, and styles of metal leg so we can best support your furniture making. Perhaps you have an uneven slab of wood you want to make into a table. Great, you can order hairpin legs of different heights to accommodate it. The tabletop and your craftsmanship are what should be highlighted when making custom furniture.

Our hairpin legs are there to play a supporting role. Whatever speaks to you and adds character to your living space will make a great hairpin leg piece. All our hairpin legs are made to order right here in the USA, so you can be sure you’re getting a high-quality product for your furniture. When you’re finished, send us a pic of your creation!

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Bench Legs if You’re Not Making a Bench?

closeup flat bar bookshelf with custom metal legs

Modern Legs is named for the mid-century modern style hairpin legs we make. But for those who know us well, you know we also make lots of other leg styles including bench legs. Why? We offer a variety of hairpin legs in seemingly endless sizes. What purpose do the bench legs serve? Our bench legs fit a more specific purpose. Our hairpin legs are durable and will hold up a substantial amount of weight. But if you’re looking for something that will make you feel even more confident with weight support, bench legs are the solution.

These bench supports look great simply bolting them to the bottom of a slab of wood. Voila, you have your very own custom bench. But customers saw that these versatile legs need not be confined to benches alone. From tables to shelving these metal legs have found their way into many fascinating and creative projects. We’d like to see what you come up with. Have something specific in mind? Drop us a line and we just might be able to customize a set for you if that’s what you’re looking for. And don’t forget to send us a pic when you’re done!

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Are Four Hairpin Legs Right for Your Project?

Each hairpin leg furniture project is unique to its builder, and that’s how it should be. That’s the point of making your own custom furniture! Today we’re asking a basic question, ‘How many hairpin legs do I need?’ The obvious answer might be four legs. After all, four legs are what comes standard on most tables, chairs, desks, and the like. But your project is going to be a custom project, right? Think about what works for you.

Four hairpin legs will work just fine on lots of projects. But just because that’s standard, doesn’t mean that is what you have to go with. We’ve seen customer projects that utilize more and less than four with impressive results. Some tables work great with three legs. Stools often utilize three preventing them from rocking when there are slight variations in the floor. Long tables– especially thin ones–can benefit from extra hairpin legs to support the weight in the middle of a long expanse. Or perhaps hairpin legs don’t give the breadth of coverage you’re looking for and you decide to use bench legs!

Our metal bench legs do an amazing job of supporting a large amount of weight. Just as with hairpin legs, bench legs can be used in a combination of numbers to best support your project. Your project can utilize a pair of bench legs, one for each end. Additional numbers can be used in the same way as hairpin legs when supporting a long table. And if you’re in the position to attach one end of a table to a wall, you can use just one bench leg. The creative process is full of possibilities! We hope these DIY furniture projects from our customers help jump start your creative process.

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Elizabeth’s Hairpin Leg Table with Reclaimed Barn Board

There’s something about barn boards. They hold the elements at bay for fifty or a hundred years and boy that really adds character to wood. Wood that has stood up to the elements for decades can certainly hold up to a second life as indoor furniture. Old barn boards are often from the era of hand crafting. Sometimes the evidence of being hand worked remains adding another dimension to your furniture. Elisabeth’s reclaimed barn board table looks right at home with the hairpin table legs she chose.

vermont barnwood coffee tableIn a time of myriad building materials, it can be refreshing to combine some of our oldest building materials with brand new ones. These boards are reclaimed from a historic barn in Vermont. We think they look just perfect with our hairpin legs. Notice Elizabeth chose our Just the Tip hairpin legs. They can be used to support heavier tables as they provide more of a “foot” than other hairpin legs. Or they can be chosen just because that’s the style you like best. For whatever reason, they go perfectly! If you’re looking for wood for your hairpin leg table, keep an eye out for historic buildings that are being renovated or deconstructed. Materials from these structures are often saved for reuse so people can repurpose the historic materials. You can also see if there is a reused building material center in your area. Attach your hairpin legs and you’re off and running!

Thanks for the inspiration Elisabeth, we love it!

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Hairpin Leg Table That’s a…Zen Garden?

Sitting in a room with a piece of furniture you made yourself can create peace and relaxation. This can be especially so when your hairpin leg table is a Zen garden! Jon made this creative Zen garden table for the ultimate relaxation experience. It is always amazing to see the creativity of our customers and this is a great one!

Our hairpin legs are truly designed to create a solid support to whatever amazing project you come up with. They are a steadfast reliable way of supporting your creations. This table is the perfect example! Glass and sand are combined with wood to create an artistic and conscientious experience…all in a piece of furniture! Amazing job, Jon, we’re impressed!

All our hairpin leg varieties are made of steel rod. They come to ready for your table in their raw steel color. Adding some kind of finish to them is always an option. Jon opted to make the hairpin legs on his table even darker than the natural steel color. This helps them fade into the background and simply do their job of supporting the table – without detracting from the attention this unique piece deserves.

There are many ways to finish hairpin legs if you want. They can remain the they are or you could paint or clear coat them. On a different piece of furniture, painting the legs a bright color could bring desired attention to the legs. The options are endless. But we certainly like the idea of sitting around this one-of-a-kind table!

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Todd’s Black Walnut Slab Desk with Angle Iron Table Legs

A desk can be a large piece of construction with lots of drawers and surfaces or it can be a light airy piece of furniture like this one Todd at ABP Works built. Metal legs provide lots of options and they can be short hairpin legs or tall angle iron legs…whatever is the right look for the finished piece!

tapered angle iron leg walnut table walnut table with angle iron table legs

Not only is this black walnut desk lighter in many ways than a traditional desk; it’s also easier to build. The live edge keep the desk unique while also providing a bit more surface area to work on. Just like our hairpin legs, our tapered angle iron legs come in a variety of sizes. We can build them anywhere from 4″ to 30″.

Todd chose to use the larger of our two dimensions for this table, and we think it came out beautifully! Todd built this to be a desk or a writing table. Its shape lends itself perfectly to being a foyer or console table too. The nice thick slab (2″ x 62″) will hold up almost anything that needs support in the average home, and 30 inches tall is a very useful height for work or entertainment.

Thanks for sharing the photos Todd…it looks great!

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Todd’s Hairpin Leg Tables with Turquoise Inlay

We’ve been sending Todd at ABP Works modern furniture legs for a while now, but these creations really jump out when we look back at projects! Working with solid slabs of wood can lead to wonderful results, but they come with their own challenges. The deep cracks in the wood might seem like a problem to solve, but they are also an opportunity for color. Todd used turquois inlay butterfly splines to keep the wood solid. The light color of the butterfly splines does more than physically tie together the wood. They also visually connect the smaller bits of light colored wood throughout.

Todd’s use of turquoise inlay is a second way to create an exceptional table. Though turquoise is one of the more common colors for inlay, there is certainly room for variety if you’re thinking of inlay. We’ve also seen customers add color by painting some or all of the tabletop. And of course the hairpin legs themselves can be painted. Look for paints that work well on metal, and think about adding a clear coat afterwards.

Todd’s second table is another live edge slab table with turquois inlay. This table uses the Twist hairpin legs. Check out the contrast between the two tables and the difference in their hairpin legs. This table has much straighter lines than the previous one. The Twist hairpin legs can a lot of variation to the strait angles of this table. All in all, Todd’s tables offer a lot of food for thought as you plan your own hairpin leg table. Thanks for sharing Todd!

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Mike’s Spalted Maple Table with Bench Legs

Slab wood offers so many options and opportunities for furniture. Slabs can be long and thin boards that retain the live edge. They can also be large and irregular pieces. No matter what type of slab you’re looking for or working with, each and every one is unique. This amazing slab table is Mike’s latest creation. Mike is at Wood Shed Production and they create stunning work, as you can see.

spalted maple table with bench legs

We love that our modern furniture legs can lend support–pun intended–to such amazing creations. There are many reasons we offer such variety of metal lets. Our hairpin legs come in a variety of styles and diameters. Our metal bench legs come in two styles. Offering different sizes of metal legs can serve as a jumping off point. We know that with the many options of hairpin legs and bench legs we offer, you may need something different. Mike knows that too. The spalted maple slab Mike used for this amazing table has different thicknesses throughout the table. How can that be accommodated? With bench legs of different heights. We were happy to create a custom order for Mike and we’re glad we did – the result is amazing! If you’re not seeing exactly what works for you on our website, shoot us an email; chances are we can come up with something that will work for you. And send us a picture when you’re done!