During the One Room Challenge 2017 we gave an old pair of end tables a low-cost makeover. We needed them in our Family Style Family Room but I didn’t want to spend money for new tables. These ugly things had been sitting in our basement for a really long time. I’m not sure why it took me so long to think of making them over, but once I did it didn’t take much effort to give them a fresh new look.
I got these from the no-longer existent Bombay Company in 2004 during my Far East Decor stage. Yup, that decorating phase happened. Nothing cuter than fake eastern decor from the store at the mall, right? 😉 The tables aren’t anything special and are made of inexpensive materials including veneers. I wasn’t sure I could paint them, but since they were just sitting there it was worth a try!
Creating New Tops for The End Tables
The first job was removing those silly wings on the top. While I realize not many people will have these specific end-tables, I thought that it would be fun to share the transformation. Maybe you’ll get some inspiration for some old pieces you have on hand. I asked husband to give us a step by step of his part, which included removing the top and rebuilding a new one.
He marked off where to cut to remove the “wings.”
Then he used a square to make sure the mark was level before cutting
After cutting the wings off, he sanded the sides until they were smooth and flush with the rest of the top.
Then, he drilled holes into each corner for dowels.
He cut a new top out of 3/4 inch plywood, leaving a 1/2 inch overhang.
Then drilled holes for the dowels on the underside.He put tight bond three in the holes and put it together.
Then he clamped the top down and let them dry for 24 hours.
After letting everything dry he used a round over bit on the router to create this edge.
Painting with Chalk Paint
Now for my part! I was worried about painting these because of the veneered surface. I have heard that chalk paint works on anything so I decided to give it a try. I very lightly sanded the tables all over and then painted them using Annie Sloan Chalk Paint.
The chalk paint did work but it took several coats to really get good coverage. I think it took so much paint because white really doesn’t cover as well as the colored chalk paint and they aren’t real wood. It only took two coats to cover the new top piece, which is made of real wood.
After the paint dried I distressed the tables. I started out with sand paper but good grief that took forever. So I broke out the palm sander. I mean I don’t have all day to be sanding things, I have things to watch on Netflix!
After I was done sanding I tried dark wax on it but didn’t like it. On the white chalk paint I thought that the dark wax looked really dirty. So I finished the piece with polyurethane instead.
I found super cute new handles at Hobby Lobby and then chalk painted some old lamps to go on the tables. I love how they turned out.
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The cost of this makeover for the end tables was less than $15 each for wood and handles. We already had the paint and I used about 1/4 of the can. It was much cheaper to redo these than buy new ones and it keeps them from being thrown away.
You can see the end tables and the rest of the room in our
One Room Challenge: Farmhouse Style Family Room Reveal.
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