I am continuing my posts on past DIY projects. We have built up quite a few posts (3+ years worth!) and it will keep me busy getting this blog caught up with them all. It has been a lot of fun going back into my personal archives to find these projects for you to see and hopefully be inspired by. With that in mind I am pleasantly surprised at how well I did document some of the steps. I will do my best to remember as many details as I can.
I have had this table for years. My parents found it at a thrift store and we jumped on the price-$70 for the table and four chairs. At the time I really didn’t know what my style was or have one for that matter, so I lived with it. Fast forward a few years involving getting married and moving a few times and now that poor table felt outdated. The wood was too light for me and the fact that the chairs never quite matched really started to stick out in my mind. I knew I wanted something different, but wasn’t willing to spend hundreds of dollars buying something new. At the time farmhouse tables were just starting to pop up on blogs but it still was not a huge success like it is now. I found one site that explained how they updated their old table and I knew we could do something similar. I do not remember what site it was but now its easy to search for directions as there are a lot of tutorials on this idea. Below is not technically a tutorial but it shows a few steps of our process-hope this helps.
First we took the existing table apart to get a better feel for the construction. Then we headed to Lowe’s to purchase the necessary wood. We bought 2×8 pine and cut them to length and made a new top to go on the existing legs. Deciding to use the existing legs saved us time and money. The leg design is not a traditional farmhouse look, but their simple curves did not scream for attention or steal away from the over all look so we left them. One tip we always try to do when buying wood from the lumber yard is thoroughly look over each piece. A lot of them are warped or have difficult knots to work around or other imperfections. I usually don’t mind this look, but sometimes you might not. Don’t be afraid to go through the whole stack to get what you want, you will be happy you spent the time finding quality pieces. Unfortunately some of our pieces were twisted on one end so we had to weight down the boards for about a week to help them straighten/flatten out. We looked through the whole stack too, so sometimes that is as good as it gets. Plus I didn’t want to wait any longer for a different batch to come in, I had waited too long as it was so I was very impatient… I’m working on it.
Removing the old table top and using it as a template helped us to make sure we were not compromising the size. It also helped weigh down the new boards to straighten them. You can also see the added supports we installed to help balance the increased weight of the pine boards. We knew that we needed the durability that 2×8 pine provided. 1×8 pine was too small and its depth was not up to scale with the rest of the table.
In the beginning I debated on whether to paint the bottom of the table support and the legs a different color or use plain old black. I decided to use semi gloss black in hopes it would be neutral enough to go with additional furniture pieces that I would be adding to my home as time went on. Looking back, I am glad I decided to do this as I have started to hone in on my style since making this and the design has still fit in beautifully with all my new pieces.
One of the things I did not like about our old table was the light wood color. This knowledge prompted me to decide on the darkest stain our local hardware store carried. Minwax Dark Walnut was what we chose and it turned out perfect. We did apply two coats as well as three coats of polyurethane in case you were wondering.
I grew up in the mountains so I have always been drawn to rustic and lived in furniture. Lucky for me, my husband is pretty much a mountain man and likes this look as well. In order to keep that look we used hammers, chisels, screws and a wedge to distress and add visual interest to the table top. I also distressed the legs a bit to match. It was hard to get a good photo showing the different marks.
I also had this console table that we constructed years ago, before blogs or anything like that so sadly I do not have any photos showing how we made this one. At the time I really liked the green color and light wood but knew it would now stick out against the new table so it got the same type of makeover.
Ah! So much better. I painted over the green with the same semi gloss black paint. I sanded the top and distressed it to match the table. Applied some stain and poly and now it is the perfect mate to an awesome farmhouse table.
I hope this post helped you to see how easy it was for us to update a piece of furniture that still had many years of life in it, but the style was not quite right.
Do you have a piece of furniture that you like but don’t completely love? Go ahead and give it a facelift! You will be glad you did and wonder why you didn’t think of it sooner. If so, come back and tell us about it. We love to see your before and afters!