Side Table Refresh

5 Materials
3 Days

Have some old tables that have seen better days? Driving down the road on garbage day and see some tables that look like they're better off staying in the trash? Don't be fooled! Load those beauties up in your trunk and bring them home! With some sand paper + paint they'll be you're favorite pieces of furniture in no time!

Materials needed

This is the before - damaged top and wear and tear everywhere else

The drawers had this fun pattern on the inside and I decided to use it as inspiration!

Step One - Prep Furniture

Wipe down, remove hardware and get ready to sand

Step Twp - Sand!

Depending on what you're going to do with your piece you'll need to sand. For this piece the top wasn't in good condition for one, and for two it wasn't solid wood, which meant I couldn't stain it. I always stain what I can and for this piece it was the drawers. When staining a piece you'll need to sand it down completely. Start off with a high grit sand paper such as 120 - 80. You never really know what you're sanding down to so you want to start off safe. I ended up using 60 grit to get the old grimy stain off this top. I used 120 grit after that to prep to stain.

After you're done sanding, wipe off all the dust.

So satisfying!

Step Three - Stain + Paint

Now that the hard part of sanding all the gross old stain away is over, you can stain/ paint with a new color!

Stain color - American Walnut by Rustoleum + Antique White

Paint Color - Stable Calm by Valspar

The color stain wasn't my favorite, my choices were limited at the store, so I decided to try something fun. I went over top the American Walnut with Antique White and then sanded it down with a sanding block to achieve the finished look.

Step Four - Seal

Now that you've stained/ painted, you'll need to seal it up. This is what I always, always use to seal my stained pieces. To seal the paint I applied a thin layer of vintage antiquing wax from American Paint Company. I used an eggshell finish paint for this piece.

Step Five - Smooth Out Top (OPTIONAL)

*this step is completely specific to your piece*

After painting this piece I noticed the top was very textured. I didn't mind it, I felt it fit the vibe of the piece, but I decided to see if I could smooth it out - I had nothing to lose. To do this I grabbed some spackle I had lying around and applied it to the top using a putty knife.

See that texture!

This is what the top looked like after I applied the spackle.

After that was dry, I then took a high grit sanding block and sanded it down.

I then applied another coat of paint and it was all done!

Step Six - Add Hardware + Enjoy!

I absolutely love the way these tables turned out!

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Have a question about this project?

1 question
  • Tish
    on Apr 16, 2020

    Just wondering why joint compound instead of wood filler? Because it’s quicker? Easier to sand? It’s not as hard... but you’ve got paint and sealer (?) over it, and it’s not like it’s a dining room table, so it won’t get constant use... but I’m a purist. Had to ask.

    Beautiful finished project. Lovely color combination. I’m glad you saved them from the dump... 😊

    • Susie
      on Apr 29, 2020

      Yes, William, it was a helpful and nice answer.

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