2×4 projects with tutorials for the beginner DIY’er. These are some ideas for what you can make with 2x4s, from small projects to big!
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I love 2×4 projects. They’re an affordable cut of wood to buy and easy for me to haul home… I like to slide them between the kids’ seats in the minivan. . I can fit 8′ 2x4s in my van easily, and I think I’ve squeezed in 10′ boards too (with the back door closed).
Let’s talk a bit about 2x4s and then I’ll show you some fun project ideas for them!
About 2×4 Lumber
A 2×4 is a cut of wood that is commonly used for woodworking projects. It’s used for framing buildings like sheds or the goat house that we built. It’s also used for framing homes, although 2x6s are also used sometimes.
Wood is never the size “advertised” by its name. When it’s initially cut, it’s cut to 2×4, but the wood shrinks after drying and planing. A 2×4 is around 1.5×3.5″.
There’s an involved explanation of the difference between dimensional lumber and actual lumber sizes. I won’t get into the full explanation here, but if you would like to learn more, here’s some good information on the dimensions of different wood cuts.
The good news is that the length of the wood cut should be accurate (if you buy a 10′ 2×4, it should be 10′).
If you have any questions about the dimensions, an associate at any home improvement store will be able to help you out.
Tips for 2×4 Woodworking Projects
Save Money by Planning Ahead
When you start a 2×4 project, you can figure out all of your measurements in advance. If you do this, you can plan what size 2x4s you want to purchase, then see if there’s a good combination so you are left with the least amount of scrap.
For example, if you need (4) 5′ cuts of 2×4, you want to buy (2) 10′ 2x4s instead of (4) 8′ 2x4s. If you bought those (4) 2x4s instead, you’d end up with 3′ of scrap from each 5′ piece you cut. If you have a lot of fun projects planned with scraps then that’s fine! But it’s smart to buy what you need so you aren’t paying more than you need to for a project.
Our local lumberyard charges per foot, regardless of what size the cut of wood is.
Ripping 2x4s Into Smaller Cuts
If you need a thinner piece of wood, you can also cut your 2×4 into that size. For example, here’s a tutorial on ripping a 2×4 into a 2×2. Here’s some good advice on ripping 2x4s into 1x4s.
I haven’t done this because I don’t have the best tools for the job. I don’t want to attempt it with a circular saw. Apparently it’s doable, but I find that the right tool tends to help avoid accidents. Seeing I consider myself a somewhat newbie builder, I don’t like to take risks when I can just run to store to get what I need.
Choosing the right lumber
When you’re shopping for 2x4s, make sure to check your wood to make sure it’s not warped in any way and to identify any issues with the board. For example, you might not want knots in the wood and some boards may be splintered at the ends. I find that our local lumberyard is the better source for straight lumber than the big box stores.
Large 2×4 Builds
Large 2x4 Builds
Large projects that you can build with 2x4s.
Kids Picnic Table | Bitterroot DIY
This kids picnic table is made exclusively with 2x4s.
How to Build a 2x4 Outdoor Bar Table
This outdoor bar table would be an amazing addition to your porch or patio.
How to Build a Goat House: Supplies & Framing
Frame a shed or goat house (or whatever!)
Slatted Outdoor Dining Table Build: DIY 2x4 Patio Furniture
Love the gorgeous wood top on this 2x4 table base!
DIY End of Bed Wood Bench
This is such a cute build for farmhouse decor!
Outdoor Dog Cabana DIY
This outdoor dog (or kid) cabana is perfect for keeping everyone cool!
How to Build a DIY Sand and Water Table | Easy Sensory Table with Lids
Love this sand and water table made from 2x4s!
DIY Farmhouse Outdoor Patio Table made with 2×4’s for less than $60
Here's another fun patio table and it was under $60 to build.
Modern 2×4 Bench – DIY Tutorial
Here's a great bench to build with those 2x4s.
DIY Wood Color Block Table Top from 2×4’s
This colored block table top was made with 2x4s! So cool!
DIY Outdoor Chairs for Porch
This project uses a combo of 2x4s and 2x6s.
How to Make a Milking Stand for Nigerian Dwarf Goats
Learn how to use 2x4s to make this milking/grooming stand for a goat.
DIY Storage Shelving for Our Shed
Build shed shelving with 2x4s.
How to Make Your Own Blanket Ladder
Make a simple blanket ladder using 2x4s.
How to Build an Indoor Rock Climbing Wall
Did you know we used 2x4s for our climbing wall?
Scrap 2×4 Projects
Projects to Make with Scrap 2x4s
Here's some project ideas for those scrap 2x4s that you have leftover.
DIY Kids at Play Yard Sign
I think every parent needs one of these signs!
A DIY Step Stool is a Perfect Gift for Kids!
These stepping stools are super easy to build.
DIY 2x4 Bajot Table
Here's a 2x4 Bajot table that's perfect for decor.
How To Organize A Reach-In Pantry | Our New Pantry Closet & A Super Easy DIY!
Use 2x4s to organize your pantry!
DIY Drawer Organizer for Kitchen Wrap
I used 2x4s to make this drawer organizer, although 1x4s might be a better option if you wanted to rip the wood!
2x4 Wood Porch Pumpkins
Here's some Fall decor for your porch.
DIY Dog Crate Table Topper
Here's a dog crate topper made with 2x4s.
DIY Fall Wood Sign with Vinyl
Make an easy Fall wood sign using vinyl and 2x4s.
DIY a Modern Wood Broom from a 2x4: Upcycling A Broken Broom Into Functional Art
Here's a functional modern broom made from 2x4s.
How to Build Custom Picture Frames out of 2x4's - Happily Ever After, Etc.
You can even make picture frames from 2x4s!
How To Make a Curtain Rod Shelf Combo
Add a shelf over your windows with this easy build.
Please share and pin this post! If you make this project, share it in our Stuff Mama Makes Facebook Group. We have regular giveaways for gift cards to craft stores. You can also tag me on Instagram @doityourselfdanielle; I love seeing everything you make!
Sunday 1st of September 2019
You are awesome for posting these easy DYI 2x4 projects. Love the content and can't wait to get started. Finally, a woodworking site I can interact with ...
Wednesday 21st of August 2019
Great post! 2x4s are so economical and can be used in so many projects! Thank you for linking to the How to Cut a 2x4 in Half post... It’s greatly appreciated!