weekend project: coffee table redo

PicMonkey CollageWho doesn’t love a great bargain?  I know I do! Over the last couple of weeks I’ve begun to head on out to an auction house that holds weekly auctions. The first time I went I came home with some metal file drawers to store things in and a cool metal chair. This time I came home with this Lane coffee table.

I spotted this great little mid century modern style table almost immediately. It was just the height and length I had been looking for. It was nice and sturdy too. The only problem was that it was pretty marked up on the top. It needed some TLC.  I waited until the auctioneer came to this piece, hoping no one else saw the potential in this beauty. Apparently no one did, or they were’t willing to spend the time finding it, because I walked away with it in my hands for a mere $13!

After I brought it home my husband spotted a table just like it on a vintage site for $350!! Woah! I was even more determined to reveal the beauty that I had a hunch was lying within!

Here are a few before photos of my table.

IMG_6799The top had lots of marks and the wood was so dry and thirsty. It needed a good revitalization. The legs have a small section of black paint on the very bottom that was peeling off.

Here you can see some of the marks on the top. It looked like someone had used it for a kid’s craft table, because there was marker, glitter, paint, pen. You name it. Someone had fun here!

IMG_6801And this next photo is very blurry, so sorry about that. It makes me cringe. But it does give you a great idea of what the table looked like before I started working on it.  I just adore that inlaid wood pattern. I just think it’s so gorgeous!

IMG_6798After I cleaned it well with mild soap and water, I hand sanded it down to get as many of the marks off as I could. I used a 220 grit sand paper, but I think next time I have a project like this I will use a coarser grit. Some of these marks were deep and hard to get off. But I was able to remove most of them by sanding. There are still a few I wasn’t able to remove, but I’m Ok with that.

Then I turned to Pinterest for some handy furniture tips I had saved for such a time as this. I came across a tip from Miss Mustard Seed for revitalizing wood. I knew that was a source that could be trusted, since Miss Mustard seed is a furniture redoing guru.

So basically, you mix up 3/4 cup of oil (canola, vegetable, olive, etc.) with 1/4 cup of vinegar (white, apple cider, etc.). I used vegetable oil and apple cider vinegar for my concoction. Then you dip a rag into it and rub it all over your furniture. It restores the natural beauty of the wood. I tried it on the bottom of my table first, because even though I trust Miss Mustard Seed, I still didn’t just want to dive right in without getting a good idea of how it was going to work. When I saw what it did to the bottom of my table I could’t wait to get started on the top.

As I rubbed in the oil and vinegar mixture, the beauty that I suspected was there began to emerge. I gasped with delight and I’m sure I uttered things like “oh my word! and “holy cow!” a few times.

After I was finished with the oil and vinegar rub down, I sanded the black part of the legs. After debating whether I should spray paint the black part or use acrylic paint, I opted for acrylic, since it was just easier. After everything was dry I sprayed the entire thing with a clear polyurethane finish. I found I couldn’t get a smooth finish with the spray poly, so I lightly sanded it and applied brush on poly to the top of the table instead. I found I was able to achieve a much more uniform finish with the brush on versus the spray on.

And here are a few shots of the finished table.





Isn’t she pretty! I’m so delighted I was able to snag her for less than $15! I love how the beauty of the wood is visible. It’s really, really gorgeous! While I was working on my table I could’t help but send a photo to my husband so he could see the difference. He said “wow! It looks like more auctions are in your future!” I’m sure he’s right.

Do you have a piece of wood that needs to be revitalized? Why not make it your weekend project? It’s so simple and requires only two products that most people have on hand all the time. You can try this on any piece of unpainted wood. Rub it in, then stand back and admire beauty you just made happen.

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