Drab to Fab Side Tables

5 Materials
4 Hours

These side tables were thrifted for $30 but they were rough! It's amazing what a little sweat equity and paint can achieve!

These are what I started with. These side tables were huge, dirty and a little broken but they were only $30

They had been colored on, gouged and cut on and generally, just abused and used as a home for mice! Gross is an understatement! BUT...they were strong and had good bones and I knew I could make them gorgeous!

The first thing I did with these was to clean them thoroughly with Simple Green - THREE times! Second step was to scuff sand them with 220 grit sandpaper. I did end up taping off all the marble so I didn't scratch it or paint it. There were some areas with a mystery sticky substance on them that required me to scrape it off with a putty knife!

The next step was to prime these so that nothing would bleed through and so that the paint would adhere well to the surface.

Finally, after all the prep, it was time to paint! I used General Finishes milk paint in "Driftwood" and applied two coats.

My client wanted some of the details of these end tables to "pop." To achieve that, I used "Winter White" glaze by General Finishes and applied it with a brush.

It is important to work with small areas when glazing. Once you have it applied to the area, it is time to wipe it off. The goal here is to have it stay in all the nooks and crannies which will make those areas "pop!"

These end tables went from trash to treasure and drab to fab! It truly is amazing what a little hard work and paint can accomplish!

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Have a question about this project?

3 of 5 questions
  • Grandma Beth
    on Jun 21, 2019

    Where is the marble inset? I’d like to see what it looked like on the finished piece.

    • Katy | Rancho La Flor
      on Jun 24, 2019

      This is what the marble looked like before I refurbished them. Unfortunately, I did not take a picture of the tops when I was done. That said, the marble looked so much better with the Driftwood because the colors are complementary!

  • Renee
    on Jul 1, 2019

    How to make a floating desk

    • Katy | Rancho La Flor
      on Jul 27, 2019

      I’m not sure this question applies here. That said, I’m sure we could find an answer if you need a floating desk!

  • Kunquoda
    on Aug 19, 2019

    This is a great idea but I didn't see any pictures of the finished product, did I miss something? My question would be this. Did you make enough profit to cover the cost of the tables plus the materials? I have a few pieces I'd like to redo but not sure if it would pay to put in the effort, plus materials so I'd like an idea of the profit power in a project like this. thank you

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