Activity Table Set Made From Mismatched Furniture

5 materials
2 Hours

Do you love a good matchmaking story? Oh good, me too! In fact, my very favorite kind is when two people from completely different worlds fall in love, scorn society's preconceived notions and make it work....just like Poldark!

Today's furniture upcycle is a classic love story of opposites uniting and it has such a happy ending!

Here are the characters in today's drama...a thrifted side table and two child-size chairs from a church rummage sale. Can you see why they were unlucky in love and no one wanted them anymore? They'd been well loved and well used in another life...but they were showing signs of wear and tear (and gum on the seat!)

Different colors, different eras, different styles. 

Would the magic happen? Could these pieces from different backgrounds....different sides of the tracks... fall in love?

I could see beyond the ugly, damaged surfaces to the potential of what they could become! I cleaned them up and sanded down any splinters or rough areas with my handy palm sander.

The table was painted with my favorite diy chalk paint recipe in a creamy white (I used Behr's Swan Wing from Home Depot). 

The next step was to turn the table top into a chalkboard, something that appeals to every child! I taped off about a 2-inch border all the way around. Frog tape is my go-to tool for this because it leaves crisp lines with no bleed through.

Next I painted the surface of the table with 2 coats of black chalkboard paint.

The chairs were painted with Blackberry House Paint in Spring Rain, This was my first time using this paint, and I was surprised at how little was needed...they only required one coat! Blackberry House Paint is not technically chalk paint; it's a water-based paint with custom pigments and additives (but it grips like a chalk paint).

You can see that I added a white stripe on each chair to tie the three pieces together, as well a little accent of the Spring Rain color along the edge of the table. These simple additions really helped to marry these mismatched pieces into a cohesive activity set!

And just like that it's like they were always meant to be together....overcoming all odds, obstacles and preconceived notions!

Happily Ever After

If you've never picked up a paintbrush and transformed a piece of furniture...maybe it's time to start! I hope I've inspired you to look at discarded furniture with new eyes and see what it might become. There's a story waiting to be told!

Resources for this project:

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  • Robyn Garner Robyn Garner on May 12, 2021

    And yes, they lived together happily ever after! Nice story

    btw - did you "season" the chalkboard? You must season a new chalkboard surface before using it, for those who don't know.

    Turn a piece of chalk on its side and put fat lines up and down the entire surface of the chalkboard. Then do the same thing horizontally. After that, use the eraser to erase all the chalk and the board is good to go! If you don't season a new chalkboard it will forever retain all the first lines and writing.


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