Criss-Cross Dining Table & Bench

Marc Spagnuolo

This course will be a little different than the typical Guild fare. Instead simply building a particular project, we'll delve into a new design, making changes on the fly and in order to make a usable prototype. The focus of the course will be less about the woodworking (though we'll cover that in detail), and more about the design process and whether or not the end product meets my goals for a functional about beautiful dining table. The bench is built separately using a few different techniques for the sake of variety. Even if you don't particularly like the design, there's a lot of meat on this bone with regard to design and various woodworking tips and tricks.

The table measures 30 3/4" H x 42" W x 84"L

The bench measures 18" H x 14" W x 60" L

  • 8 lessons
  • 101 min
  • $79.00

Here's what we'll cover:

  1. Design and Leg Prototype

    Working out the overall design and honing in on a leg shape.

  2. Templates and Cutting Out the Legs and Rails

    Making templates is an essential part of the woodworking process. I often draw my ideas onto the template stock itself, and then cut those parts out when it’s time to build. Usually I use 1/4” sheet good stock for templates but all I had in the shop at the time was 3/4” stock. For your […]

  3. Mortise and Tenon

    These days, you have a lot of ways you might execute the joinery between the legs and the rails. For me, it’s hard to beat the classics. A router-cut loose mortise and tenon joint is fairly easy to make using nothing but a router and an edge guide for the mortises and a tablesaw and […]

  4. Criss-Cross Joint

    The criss-cross joint is interesting to say the least. Be sure to draw the joint on both of your workpieces and double check everything before making any cuts. If you do it right, you should be able to angle your miter gauge or sled and keep it at that setting for both rails. Take your […]

  5. Leg and Rail Shaping

    Pillowing is what I like to call the process of applying a face curve to furniture parts. Instead of standard flat faces, it can be fun to add a subtle curve that softens the look. You certainly don’t have to do this and you’re not hurting my feelings if you don’t like it. But I […]

  6. Assembly

    Assembly of the base is fairly straightforward. I highly recommend making yourself a set of miter clamping jigs as shown here. This will make your life a lot easier whenever you have to clamp large miters. After the rail and leg sub-assemblies are together, add some glue to the cross-lap joints and bring the two […]

  7. The Top, Final Assembly, and the Finish

    While the top on this table is quite large, it’s really nothing more than a simple panel with curves and an under bevel. And while you might be strong enough to flip a table like this on your own, I highly recommend getting some help. You’ll have to flip it several times and trust me, […]

  8. The Bench and Closing Thoughts

    The bench is really just a mini version of the table. I took the opportunity to show a few alternative options that you might include in your table build, namely using the Domino for the joinery and using simple screws for the attachment of the top. While this design was a bit of an experiment, […]

What will I receive?

  • Detailed cut list and plans including a PDF and a SketchUp file (Metric and Imperial).
  • Hours of detailed video instruction showing every step of the build.
  • All videos and plans are digital and will be available for download upon purchase.

What will I learn?

  • Developing a Design
  • Creating Templates
  • Flush Trimming
  • Making Large Miter Joints
  • Loose Mortise & Tenon Construction
  • Making a Large Table Top with Underbevels
  • Finishing with Tung Oil
  • Large Cross-Lap Joinery

What will I need?


  • Table: 79 BF of 8/4 Hardwood, 1 BF 4/4 Hardwood
  • Bench: 23 BF 8/4 Hardwood, 1 BF 4/4 Hardwood

Power Tools

Table Saw, Miter Gauge, Bandsaw, Router w/ Edge Guide, Domino (Optional), Miter Saw, Jointer, Planer, Oscillating Spindle Sander (Optional), Jigsaw, Sander, Angle Grinder w/ Carving Disc (Optional), Drill Press, Circular Saw or Track Saw, Hand Held Power Planer (if making an under bevel on the top)

Hand Tools

Bevel Gauge, Chisels, Card Scraper, Block Plane

Blades & Bits

Other Stuff

About Your Instructor:

Marc is a podcaster, video producer, woodworking enthusiast, and author of Hybrid Woodworking and Essential Joinery. He has contributed articles and video content to, Popular Woodworking Magazine, WOOD Magazine, and Woodcraft Magazine. He is also the host of The Wood Whisperer, an instructional woodworking video series that’s been going strong since 2006. He is also one of the hosts of the Wood Talk podcast. He has taught classes at the William Ng School, Marc Adams School, Weekend with Wood, Fine Woodworking Live, as well as at various Rockler and Woodcraft stores. He also speaks periodically at woodworking events like AWFS and IWF.