How to Make a Lap Desk With a Padded Back


You can use a lap desk at home, at the office, at the airport or just about any place where you do not have a desk. Use your lap desk so you have a hard surface to write on or something to place you laptop computer on. Make you own lap desk using only a few tools and hardware store items. Add some padding to the back of your lap desk to make it even more comfortable.

Step 1

Measure your plywood for cutting. Make a rectangle that measures 18 inches by 12 inches. Use the pencil to make marks for cutting. Give your plywood rounded edges at the corners.

Step 2

Cut out the top part of your lap desk using the jigsaw, or any other saw you own that is appropriate for this type of woodworking.

Step 3

Sand all the edges and any rough spots of your lap desk.

Step 4

Paint the top and the edges of the plywood. Do not worry about painting the bottom since the padding will cover it. Allow the paint to dry. Add a second coat if necessary.

Step 5

Lay out your fabric. Lay the plywood on top. Cut a piece of fabric that is 5 inches larger all the way around.

Step 6

Cut out two to three layers of the quilt batting to match the size of the plywood.

Step 7

Flip the plywood upside down on your work surface. Top with the quilt batting. Lay the fabric, right side up, on top of the quilt batting.

Step 8

Start at the bottom of the desk and fold under the raw edges of the fabric. Make sure to fold the fabric so that it lies underneath the quilt batting.

Step 9

Hammer some of the upholstery tacks through the fabric and into the plywood to hold the fabric in place. Make sure to catch some of the quilt batting in the upholstery tacks as well.

Step 10

Work in the same manner all the way around the edges of the plywood to complete your padded lap desk.

Things You'll Need

  • Measuring tape
  • Pencil
  • ½-inch plywood
  • Jigsaw
  • Sandpaper
  • Paint
  • Paintbrush
  • Fabric
  • Scissors
  • Rubber mallet
  • Upholstery tacks
  • Polyester quilt batting


  • Making a Lap Desk

Who Can Help

  • The Shaker Lap Desk
Keywords: lap top desk, padded lap desk, woodworking

About this Author

Ruth O'Neil has been a freelance writer for almost 20 years. She has published hundreds of articles and stories in dozens of publications including "Parentlife," "CBA Retailers and Resources," "Lookout" and "Standard." She has also worked with a publishing company editing and preparing manuscripts for publication.

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