Refinished side table

Don’t you just love when you turn something you hate into something you love? That’s exactly what happened with this project. I semi-inherited this side/end table, taking purely for its usefulness, not its looks.

I’ve had it for a few years now and finally came to the point where I had to refinish it or donate it. So I gave refinishing it a try.

First I used furniture refinisher to remove some of the existing stain.

It didn’t work like I imagined it would (pretty certain it was user error), so I still had to sand a little bit. Then it was time to stain. I picked out a black stain with polyurethane already in it. A few coats later, and my table was good and black!

It was still missing something though, so I pulled out a stamp I had and painted it silver with a small green accent flower in the middle. I stamped it on each of the corners to give the table that extra something it needed.

Now I think the table is quite charming! It looks pretty good next to our sofa, too.


I’m sure we’ll eventually get a matching coffee table and side tables, but until then, this little piece will do just fine!



Part 2: Dresser refab

My dresser is almost done. Almost. It’s been sanded, stained and polyurethaned. Now all it needs to do is dry! Then I can add my spiffy teal knobs!

The project was rather simple, but I certainly learned a lot along the way. First and foremost, don’t stain outside if there is any hint of a breeze — especially in the spring. I had to bring the dresser inside after the first coat of poly because so much crap had blown onto it and was sticking in the finish.

Second, make sure you sand all surfaces you want to stain. New stain + old stain doesn’t always equal a good combination.

Third, make sure you aren’t doing things the hard way. According to my family friend, John, it would have been a lot quicker to use a varnish stripping agent instead of sanding all of the nooks and crannies of the old dresser. A tip for next time, I suppose!

Here’s the progress so far:

OK, this was the first coat of stain. Honestly, I was super disappointed with how it looked — it wasn’t all that different from what I started with.

And here’s the stain after a much thicker coat. Much better!

Before the poly (and before I moved inside).

Remmy watching from inside because he kept grabbing rocks and/or sandpaper, and then running away.

All polyed up and sitting out to dry.

Looking good!

Maybe tomorrow I can put it all back together, knobs and all. I might play it extra safe and wait an extra day for it all to dry.

In other news, if you follow my Facebook page you know that I spent part of the weekend unpacking my craft room. While that sounds super exciting, it was actually rather overwhelming. As of right now, I’ve got a whole lot of nothing to do crafts on except the floor. I also have a whole lot of nothing to use for storage. I’ve been hitting up thrift stores and Craigslist to see if I can find something the meet my needs, but if I can’t I think I’ll have to custom build something into my craft nook. I’m rather desperate to have a functioning craft room, but all in good time.

While I didn’t find a craft table (or a coffee table or a desk), I did find some other fun things at the thrift store this weekend. 

An old dictionary, an old atlas and a nasty silver bowl. Can’t wait to get to work on some projects I have planned, especially with the atlas and the dictionary. Oh! I bought a second atlas, but the hubby loved it so much he claimed it as his own and refuses to let me use it for crafting. Also, I paid $3.50 for it and it is selling for $135 on eBay! Holy cow! Great find, huh, Carrie H. (my thrift store buddy)?