DIY Striped Black and White Marble Table

12 Materials
$100
3 Days
Medium

When we moved to our new home, I knew I needed a conversation piece in the living room. However, most of the home decor we have are hand-me-downs. Let me just say, these hand-me-downs are gems in the making! We've turned every hand-me-down into a work of art with a story.
Photo from The Vanilla Plum.Enter hand-me-down exhibit A. This sun-bleached table that burned my eyes (it was that ugly) for about three months before I figured out what to do with it. And when I saw Kelly Wearstler’s Lineage Stool collection, I just knew this was the DIY project I’ve been looking for.
I actually considered whether it would be worth using my entire year’s decorating budget on the real deal and authentic marble, but I really wanted to make it. After all, when you have a slightly challenging art project, you want to do it on a piece of furniture you don’t really care about. That way, if it doesn’t work out, you gain experience and your loss is really your time more than money.
I looked at a lot of ways to achieve this project. A lot of people use spray paint or marble contact paper. I considered both of these options, but with the stripes, corners, etc., I thought it didn’t look quite as expensive as paint with an epoxy coating. Most people look at my table and don’t believe me when I say the table was painted because it really does look like a marble slab.Before you look at me and say a DIY Marble coffee table sounds really difficult, let me tell you, it does take patience, but it’s not hard. And, I love marble, so it was worth it! Just make sure you have someone to do this project with you, because it is a two-person job, mostly because you will be using epoxy. This project would make a great coffee table, side table, marble topped dining table, etc. It also would look great with hairpin legs if you want to change out the original table base.
  • Step 1: Find a scrapped table and sand that table down! If it has a coating, it may look like it’s peeling. That’s OK. Keep sanding till it’s all off.
  • Step 2: Take the table apart and secure any little pieces in one place.
  • Step 3: Paint Primer all the surfaces.
  • Step 4: Paint the white marble layer. Don’t worry about making it perfect since we will be doing stripes next! I watched a LOT of DIY videos and tried about three methods after trying a couple and not liking the look.

HOW TO CREATE THE WHITE MARBLE LAYER:
  1. Paint the entire table white. I did 2 coats and started the next step while the second coat was drying.
  2. While the second coat is still wet, mix your marbling grey colors. I put this on cardboard to act as a painter's palette.
  3. Mix white and black paint together to create a couple different tones of grey (1-3 color variations).
  4. With your darkest grey color, take the pointy tip of the feather and create "veins," or lines, of dark grey throughout the table. As you glide the point across, change your angle so you are dragging the feather, flipping the feather, and creating texture (not an exact science!).
  5. Dip your sea sponge in the lighter grey paint, and sponge over the darker grey veins to create color and texture variations. The goal is to have so much variation that it appears to be stone.
  6. Repeat until you're happy with the colors

Once the paint is completely dry (overnight or over 2 days depending how thick the paint is), sand until smooth and level.
Photo from The Vanilla Plum.
  • Step 5: Once the white marble layer is complete, measure your table and divide your stripes with painter’s tape. I got the widest tape I could find and measured from the center outward, then divided my stripes for even spacing.

Once your measuring is complete, lay down your painter's tape (so you have white marble showing through when you pull up the tape), then use your roller to paint the entire table in black paint.
  • Step 6: Once dry, splatter white paint in a Jackson Pollack style with your paint brush. I saturated my brush and "flicked" it all over the table until I was satisfied.
Photo from The Vanilla Plum.
  • Step 7: Wait for the table to dry, then peel the tape up, checking that it’s dry as you go. Lift slowly to prevent peeling.
  • Step 8: Coat the table with epoxy. DO NOT TRY THIS ALONE. This is the very messy, time sensitive part. You have to spread very quickly. I set a timer according to the instructions and watched a couple tutorials on best practices.

Some tips: If you have air bubbles, your warm breath on it will help get them out very easily (or use a blow dryer). Move quickly and do this with a partner.Divide and conquer!
Photo from The Vanilla Plum.
  • Step 9: Admire your work on this DIY marble table. I sure did.
Photo from The Vanilla Plum
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Michaell

Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!

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Have a question about this project?

3 questions
  • Joanie
    on Jan 4, 2020

    I thought the marble look was MORE smeared? This looks streaky...........

    • Michaell
      on Jan 23, 2020

      Thank you so much! It is definitely a unique marble look.

  • Sally Alter
    on Jan 4, 2020

    If I read it right, you said paint the marble layer. How? You didn't say how to do it and that is the most important part of the table, surely.

    • Michaell
      on Jan 5, 2020

      Hi Sally, I added a couple more instructions, but I'm not exactly sure which instructions you'd like help with? If you are wanting instructions on how to marble, I can't find the tutorial I used, but here is a similar process. I do a lot of art, so I did a lot of it free hand and just kept going till I was happy with it. The cool thing about marble is it is a lot like abstract art. You can just keep painting layers and it just adds depth and beauty! Hope this helps!

  • April K. McNair
    on Jan 20, 2020

    Can this be done on a glass top? I have two glass top tables that have become an eyesore to me. The glass is quite thick.

    • Michaell
      on Jan 21, 2020

      Probably? Do you have a little artistic talent? If so, below is how I would do it.

      (If you don't have artistic talent, I would consider using contact paper instead of paint.)


      I would paint on the underside of the glass so it shows through the glass--it'll be a little harder but I think the payoff will be great because you'll have a really smooth surface. I think it'll look real if you paint underneath. You'll have to use your imagination because you'll need to do every step in REVERSE ORDER.


      I would also have a scraper on hand so you can keep checking to see if it's the way you like it. Paint scrapes off of glass easily with a scraper blade.


      You may need to use a different technique than the feather for veining the white marble to make sure you have different tones of grey depth.


      You'll need to skip the primer and epoxy steps. Though the primer would allow for adhesion, the problem is it's not clear in color...it's typically white.


      Paint the stripes with the frog tape FIRST. Creating your marble veins, then the solid color after it dries. Then after that first layer is dry, remove the frog tape, do the marble part again, then the solid color. I would flip the table over before painting the solid colors so you can scrape paint off if needed.


      I think the biggest challenge will be that first layer since there won't be anything to adhere to in order to get the marbling to show through. Does that make sense?


      I think your biggest obstacle will be getting the paint to stick on glass.

      Let me know how it turns out if you do it! I'm very curious if it'll work...tag me on Instagram? #livingplum and/or @thevanillaplum

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