Wednesday, August 1, 2012

DIY - Coffee Table Overhaul


A few weeks ago, or maybe it was just last week, all the days seems to be blending together for me, I showed you a picture of our new coffee table.  Don't remember, here she is.


She was in really good shape when we bought her, just not the right color.  So we decided to sand her down and restain her.  I've done plenty of staining in the past, remember the kitchen cabinets, so off I went to make her a beauty.

I gathered my supplies.  I used a hand sander, I would have loved to use a belt sander, but we don't have one.  I used heavy grit sandpaper to remove most of the polly and stain and a medium grit to finish her up.  Then some ebony stain and of course and some polyacrylic, in a satin.

And away I went.


I started sanding the table, carefully. It's not a solid wood table, the top is inlay, so I didn't want to sand through the inlay.  I broke through in a few places, but nowhere you'll notice.

And after J tagging in to finish up sanding the legs.  We had a nice looking table all ready for stain.


It is a nice looking table.  I wiped it down with a damp cloth to get all the saw dust off of it and let it dry while we took our daily trip to the hardware store.

After lunch, I headed back out to stain our new pretty table.  I tested the stain on the legs, and it looked good, so on to the rest of the table.  I used an clean rag to rub the stain with the grain.  I let it sit for about 10 minutes, then gently wiped it off with a second clean cloth. 


I got the whole table stained, and it looked good, except for three small places where it was not as dark.  Now this is where I should have just stepped back and let it dry.  Then I could have put a second coat on and seen what it looked like.

But did I do this, no I tried to gently sand the problem areas, only to get three areas that refused to take the stain.

Frustrated, I gave up for the night.  I knew that the whole top of the table needed to be resanded and restained.  Not what I wanted to deal with.  Sometimes it's just better to walk away from a project then try and deal with it while you're upset.

So cue the next day.  I sucked up my pride and sanded the top of the table one last time.  It was a mess getting all that ebony stain off, but I had to do it.  I sanded with a 60 grit sandpaper to get the all the stain off, then used 100 grit sandpaper to smooth everything out.


Doesn't look all that bad.  And it was very consistent, the light and dark areas are from the tree above the driveway.  We actually thought the table looked really cool just like this, but we still wanted to stain it.

I then repeated the process of staining; applied the stain with a clean cotton cloth, allowed it sit about 10 minutes, then gently wiped it off with a second clean cotton cloth.  I made sure there were no streaks and stood back to admire my work.


Success!  Look at that pretty table.  We're so happy with it.  We're so glad we decided to take the extra time to stain the table instead of painting it.  The inlay looks so cool stained and would have been a loss if we would have painted it.  See, that just shows that I don't paint everything.  Just ugly, old, non-interesting wood that isn't worth the work.

I'll apply at least two coats of polyacrylic, my favorite, in a satin finish.  And then we plan on painting the legs, possibly an off white or maybe a fun color or maybe a fun finish like crackle.  So many possibilities.

What have you been working on lately?  Have you refinished any furniture recently?  How did it go?

Always stay creative my friends.

1 comment:

Nancy said...

AHHH! I feel your pain. And I agree- I KNOW when I make a mistake that actually makes me angry that I can't try to fix it right then, I'll act wrongly & impulsively. Glad that you did finish it well. It looks great!