The Little Table That Could

Charlee Hunter
by Charlee Hunter
5 Materials
2 Days

‘Could’ what, you ask? Could become a much better version of himself 😊 Meet Percival. He was a very old, tired, plain and inexpensive side table, who’s inner self screamed vibrant and sassy! My neighbor, and good friend, had him between two chairs on her little cute screened in porch where she would sit and reflect, and Percival would have the honor of holding her coffee. I had recently refinished an old cabinet that belonged to her(it was from her grandmother) and she wanted a small project to give it a try herself. So, she brought it to my work shop (aka basement lol). I told her I would walk her through the steps to make him wonderful, but that “she” would need to do the work. We disassembled, cleaned, and sanded him and she got one coat of paint on the top section, and there he sat………….for 6 months…. See, she had gotten engaged and was planning her wedding and had no time for herself…

So apparently, I had lied. About the part that “she would need to do the work”… I couldn’t help myself. Every time I went to start another project, Percival would throw up his little hands and say "choose me, choose me... !" and I'd say , sorry bud, you are gonna have to talk to your mom about that and he give me that little pout.

I just could not look at that sad face any longer. He's so proud of himself right now... Percy, get that smirk off your face!

Hometalk Recommends!

Upgrade an old table with this bestseller chalk paint that Amazon reviewers swear by!

So here is sad little Percival :( Looking old and tired. The shelf had lost most of it's finish. The glass that goes in the top has already been removed in this picture, it is a 'smoky' glass top. The table is meant to have something displayed between the frame and the top glass. Yeah, his owner was not interested in doing that...

Cleaned, sanded and prepped, time for the first coat of paint.. Annie Sloan (AS) Provence. A lovely soft teal. His base got two coats of that.

The top piece with two coats of AS Provence. I wished I had more pictures of the process from this point.. but I could not find them on my camera .. boo hiss.. I will just list the next steps I took.

  1. Painted two coats of AS Provence
  2. Dry brushed, with a chip brush, AS Old White
  3. Distressed his edges (120 grit sand paper around edges)
  4. Used clear wax all over (AS clear wax)
  5. Used antiquing wax on his distressed edges (American Paint Co. antiquing wax)
  6. Stenciled the center of his shelf in silver and gold

His finish now looked like this.

On to the table top..........His glass. With his new 'clothes' he now needed something a little more exciting for his glass top and then it came to me....

I turned his glass over to use the bottom side of it. Percy's glass was transformed by doing the following:

  1. Throwing multiple colors on the glass (some Fusion, some Annie Sloan, and two Martha Stewart metalics)
  2. Placing plastic wrap down over it all and "smooshing" it around (yes, smooshing is a proper technical term! Haha)
  3. Took off the plastic wrap, balled up some more plastic wrap and dabbed it around until I had the whole thing covered (or at least most of it)
  4. Admired the pretty colors lol
  5. Waited for it to dry and then painted a solid coat of AS Old White over it all. Let dry.
  6. Clear coated with Fusion's Tough Coat. Let dry.
  7. Turn over and admire the ART! Ooooohhh Ahhhhhh!

Percy's new look! and he's feeling mighty sassy!

Percival's owner was shocked and surprised by his transformation and is now in love with her new little table.

Resources for this project:
See all materials
Any price and availability information displayed on [relevant Amazon Site(s), as applicable] at the time of purchase will apply to the purchase of this product.
Hometalk may collect a small share of sales from the links on this page.More info
Frequently asked questions
Have a question about this project?
  2 questions
  • Cathy Messer Cathy Messer on Apr 22, 2021

    Just curious: How did you end up using the original top piece?

  • Lynn Lynn on Apr 22, 2022

    Sooooooo cute

Join the conversation
3 of 11 comments
  • Valerie Burge Valerie Burge on Apr 24, 2022

    Looks amazing! You're REALLY good at dry brushing. Pretty entertaining writer too. :)

  • Katen Katen on Apr 12, 2024

    I remember these tables from the 70’s. They were inexpensive and every first home/apartment had at least one. Your finish is much nicer than new.