My in-kitchen dining area is neither here nor there. The window and light fixture are misaligned which makes my compulsive tendencies twitch. Do I place my table in front of the window or do I center it beneath the light? Woe is me. To the other side of the table is my hallway and beyond, my front door. Which means when I sit down to eat, the world can join us through the side panel. Hi, neighbor!
We moved into our home 7 months ago now and despite a beautiful furnished dining room, I wanted to fill that gap. I committed the new home owner sin. DO ALL THE DECORATING AT ONCE! BUY ALL THE THINGS NOW! So I bought an inexpensive bar-height dining set for two. Ten minutes later, I hated it. Lesson learned. The decor in a new home is to be collected with patience and love. Not hasty gathering.
Last week, after searching the internet and every store in the world, I ordered a small, round pedestal table and two elegant fabric chairs. I purchased the table unfinished so I could make it my own.
I live in the house of espresso, guys.
Subconsciously, we have been buying dark colored wood furniture. IT’S. EVERYWHERE. It doesn’t help that our floors are also a dark walnut. When the dog lies down, sometimes I can’t even find him. So that’s helpful.
Since the curtains at the dining area window are a grey floral and the area rug is a mix of powder blues and grey, I chose grey chairs also. The leather ones in the dining room are…yes, espresso, so I NEED some color in my life. With this in mind, the last thing I wanted to see was a dark colored table so I grabbed a bottle of antique white wood stain and got down to business! The finish I desired was not overly distressed but not a solid white as I think that would be an eye sore within the coffee cave. I still wanted the piece to fit in with the modern vibe of the chairs and just look a little farm house-y.
The table was already sanded, prepped and ready to go so after giving it a quick, dry wipe down to remove any dust, I painted the surface with two coats. I started staining at the bottom of the table which seems counter-intuitive but it avoids drips from staining the pedestal before you get to it!
Once thoroughly dry, I sealed the table with a matte finish sealant. You could use a satin or gloss but I wanted more of a rough finish.
An alternate way of finishing this table and achieving more of a distressed look would be to utilize a milk paint. Mix paint with parts water as per instructions and paint one coat.
Once dry, get a damp cloth and rub vigorously in spots you want to achieve the ‘worn’ look. The harder you work, the more distressed it will look (I’m glad I went with a stain because in this Georgia 100 degree and 110% humidity Summer, I would be the distressed one). This one definitely takes some elbow grease so make sure you’re prepared to do it!
It was so fun to do this for a few reasons
- It gave me a project of my own, something to do outside the monotony of daily life
- I purchased the table a lot more inexpensively than a finished product (you can also do this with hand-me-downs or market finds)
- I was able to do exactly what I wanted without settling for something that would simple ‘fit’.
Darby insisted on posing for this one!
Have you up-cycled a piece of furniture or completed a recent DIY project?
Let me know in the comments.