The turned wood details on these table legs provide a ready made guide to use in bringing down the height.

How to Lower the Height of a Table

by Gina Samarotto

Whether you're bringing a pub table down to a more traditional dining height or shortening a dining table to function as a coffee table, changing the height of your furniture is a smart way to improve the function of your favorite pieces. By changing the height of a table, you can easily reinvent the piece to work where you want, how you want -- allowing it to function, beautifully, in your space.

Decide on the finished height for your table. Most dining tables are 28 to 30 inches high. Coffee tables are 18 to 20 inches high. Refer to these rules of thumb, but choose the height that works best for you to provide the comfort and convenience you need. Take a look at the existing legs to determine your cutting point, as well. A large leg with several, carved segments will provide specific points where a cut would make good design sense. A thin, unadorned leg will accept a cut readily at any point.

Turn the table on its side or upside down. Measure each leg carefully and mark the desired finished length clearly. Measure from top to bottom and again from bottom to top to ensure that your measurements are accurate. Use a level to confirm that your cut marks are even.

Select a saw with a fine tooth blade. While a power circular saw is quicker and more efficient, you can use a hand saw if you're uncomfortable with power tools or if it's what you have available. Use steady, long strokes to make a clean cut with a hand saw. Cut each of the legs down to size.

Turn the table upright and check to see if sits steadily without wobbling. When you're satisfied with your cuts, turn the table back over and lightly sand each leg to remove any rough edges that can catch on carpeting or scratch floors.

Items you will need

  • Table
  • Measuring tape
  • Level
  • Saw
  • Sand paper
  • Eye protection


  • Use self-adhesive felt pads to help stabilize a wobbly table.


  • Use eye protection when working with power tools.
  • Keep tools and saws away from small children.

About the Author

Gina Samarotto is an award-winning designer specializing in both interior design and landscape architecture. She is the principal designer of the New York-based Samarotto Design Group.

Photo Credits

  • Hemera Technologies/ Images