Dumpster Find - Stain Painted Shabby Chic Side Tables

3 Hours

Saw these little tables, sitting outside at a Las Vegas friend's ranch property and made the comment that they were good candidates for painting. One had a broken support and they had been sitting outside for a while, so the finish was in horrible condition, but they were solid wood and not damaged beyond the finish. He said he rescued them from the dumpster, thinking he would refinish, but didn't have time and was working on downsizing, so he told me to take them. A little wood glue, some clamping, homemade chalk paint and stain that I had on hand transformed them in no time.
The "After"
Close up of one of the tops. Thanks to Sawdust & Embryos for the great instructional video!
Staining in progress. All done with a rubber glove and an old t-shirt as a rag. It's basically "finger painting".
Lotus flower pencil drawn.
Before - tops sanded smooth.

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Have a question about this project?

3 questions
  • Zep4660472
    on Mar 24, 2016

    Were the tops originally veneer in poor condition and had to be removed?

    • Leslie D
      on Mar 24, 2016

      They're a 1950s Victorian Reproduction table. The tops are solid wood, not veneer, and the finish on these two were in very bad condition. I sanded the tops to receive the stain, but the bottoms didn't require sanding...only cleaning for chalk painting. If they had been period pieces, I would have chosen to completely refinish and wouldn't have painted them.

  • Sli14241440
    on Apr 26, 2017

    What do u seal the top with once it is stained?
    • Leslie D
      on Apr 26, 2017

      I just used a satin polyurethane on top when done. I didn't want it to look "flat", but didn't want it too shiny either. The Satin Poly just gives a very slight sheen.

  • Db
    on May 14, 2020

    Can you explain how to do the stain after the drawing?

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