Tales of my furniture makeovers and great DIY projects...

Monday, May 21, 2012

Ugly Duckling=Gorgeous Table

Just want everyone to know, except for the link at the end of my post about where I'm sharing this entry, there are NO other intended links.  For some reason, Blogger is adding links to random words, I don't know how this happened and I'm certainly not being paid for it.  So, don't click on any links...except Primitive and Proper and Miss Mustard Seed of course!

I was aimlessly wandering through Goodwill a while back looking for a desk that I could redo for myself.  No such luck, BUT, this table kept calling my name over and over.  It was SOLID.  It was definately not a cheapy dinette table, but a real heavy piece of oak.  It just had that plain, orangey tinge brown color.  I don't know why, but I just don't like that color stain.  It just seems dated.  I kept walking away but found I couldn't leave the store without it.

I had a small disagreement with the guy who loaded it for me.  I knew, knew, knew, the top could be easily taken off the base if we just opened it up where the leaf was and exposed the screws.  But, nooooooooo, he wouldn't believe me and wouldn't dare attempt it.  So, I drove home with this monster table right side up in my pick up.  Really, I felt like an idiot.  I had to pull up to daycare like that.  Maybe by now people are used to seeing me like that?  As my husband starts to unload and we realize it isn't going to fit through the door, I suggest taking the top off again, then prepare for him to belittle me like the Goodwill man did.  But, he did it and sure enough I was right!  Here it is right inside the door:

And, look at this top, not the best color, but look at the grain:

So, I stripped the top and sanded to reveal a beautiful raw wood surface.  I then used Rustoleum Dark Walnut Stain, applied it with a brush, but then used a rag to wipe in and wipe off excess.  This stain is dark and really only requires one coat.  It also dries pretty fast.  I wanted to do something a tad different but you really can't tell from the pictures because not only does my camera suck...so do I at taking pictures!  First, I took a hammer and a huge chain and beat up on the table a bit so the dark stain could settle into the knicks and grooves. After the stain fully dried, I sanded with a 220 grit paper by hand, not too  much but made the stained top a bit distressed also.  I then topped with Annie Sloan dark wax.  I love it!  I'll definately do this again on my next wood top, just makes it so rustic.

Then, I painted two coats of Annie Sloan in Pure White, distressed, then topped with clear wax. 

It really is amazing how furniture can be transformed.  This only reinforces to me that I will never again buy any piece of wood furniture brand new.  That's just crazy talk.  I'll keep my money for myself, K?

Here is how it turned out:

This is with the leaf in.  You could comfortably seat 8 around this table, it's that big!

This is without the leaf.  Please excuse the crazy glare.  Grrrrrrr.......

And, the pretty pedestal.  The distressing really brings out the beautiful detail. 

And, that beautiful wood top.  I love this color.  Is it wrong to be this happy about a color of stain?

Now, it's a solid, updated, and useful piece of furniture.  :)

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Sunday, May 13, 2012

Outside Spaces...and another pallet project.

First of all, Happy Mothers Day to all the Mommy's!  We had a pretty quiet one here, had all the fam over for breakfast, then had a lot of relaxing while sitting outside.  It was a gorgeous day!

Speaking of outside, we've been busy the last few weekends sprucing up our outside instead of inside.  We have a great deck off our sunroom/kitchen area and below that a concrete patio.  Until now, they've been OK, just OK.  The concrete patio was pretty much a storage area for every Little Tikes toy you can imagine, but as Emma is getting older, the need for those toys lessen, so we actually have some grown up space back!  Our deck has had a nice table that we bought several years ago, but just always had blah beige cushions and a blah beige umbrella. 

When Target had a rockin' sale a while ago I was able to get the cushions for a steal.  I really liked the idea of a solid color, but couldn't decide which one to pick.  So.....why pick one?  I just picked all the ones I liked and I think they go great together:

We had some pretty (at one time) flower holders that had faded beyond faded.  So, we spruced them up with a coat of black spray paint.  Then, the only planters we had that would fit were a dull army green with faded spots.  Enter the black spray paint again...

Here's a closer look:

If you've noticed that my townhouse backs to the most beautiful protected wetlands EVER you're right.  I never realized when we bought this house how lucky we were...until now, of course!

Now, for the concrete patio...it all started with my fascination with a pin on Pinterest about all of the fabulous uses for old discarded pallets.  I saw an outside coffe table and loved it!  We cut ours in half because our space isn't that big, but can you belive we went from this:

(you can see where we sliced it in half!)

To this:

All we did was buy some 4x4's to seperate the two pallets, a bunch of L-bracket thingys (my husband did that part), 4 wheels for the bottom and my favorite Rustoleom stain.

I searched for a long time for Adirondak chairs that I liked and were affordable, which was hard.  The one's I really liked liked were a few hundred dollars a chair, so I ended up with 2 chairs from Home Depot.  They were on sale for only $39 each, but of course had to be put together and then stained that fab dark walnut color, not to mention a protective coat of poly.  While at Home Depot I passed a bin with outdoor pillows on clearance for $11 a pillow and these coral pillows just screamed BUY ME!  You can see why, huh?

The total package:

With my flowers in the shot:

Closer up:

And, lets not forget the Robin's Nest with the 3 eggs in it that is in the same exact place every year!

What's a great sitting area without some mood lighting??

We spent that weekend also planting bunches o' flowers so since they are so pretty and I finally fixed my camera, I'll take you on a tour:

The side fence that is our property line:  (we would never fence in this area...who in their right mind would block those gorgeous wetlands??)

Go ahead, be jealous, that hydrangea bush will bloom hot pink flowers by the beginning of July!  While I'm at it, might as well check out the front yard:

In a few weeks, those petunias will practically cover the flower bed and they will live ALL.SUMMER.LONG!  Yes, that's another hydrangea bush to your left!  Here are my pots o' flowers:

Some up close:

Can't forget my little welcome birds...

Excusing the trash and recycle bin to your left, here is a shot of the deck and patio:

Whew, we've been busy!  But, gotta remember, outdoor spaces are just as important, especially this beautiful time of year!

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Thursday, May 10, 2012

A new coffee table!

Well, not for me, but for someone!  I originally bought this with my mom in mind.  She needed a new coffee table and I knew this had good bones.  Her new dining table has the dark stained top and white legs, so I thought it would go nice.  She really like it, but unfortunately it's a bit too big for her small apartment.

This was it before:

I found it at Goodwill hiding behind a few other tables.  The leg was wobbly, the top was dirty and the color was just blah.  But, I loved the wood slat look on the top and knew it would be great stained darker.  So, I stripped off the top:

I got out my new favorite Rustoleum Dark Walnut Stain and some ASCP in Old White. I also fixed the wobbly leg, turns out a screw was just loose.  Boy, I know the feeling... Check out this pretty top now:

And, the whole table, which really looks completely different!

I'll have some great pictures for you this weekend, I know I've been MIA for a while again, but I've been super busy fixing up my outside spaces!  Let's just say it involved flowers, LOTS of stain, a moment where I got to prove myself RIGHT to my husband and a little homemade pallet table on wheels!  Stay tuned...