dining table refinish project
Another interesting find for the house! We scouted out this dining table, and although the finish of the tabletop was in bad shape and the legs were painted a questionable hunter green color, we knew it had potential. See that middle section? It’s a hidden built-in extension that pops up and folds out so the table can seat 6. Score! We actually have a similarly-designed table in our own house that I’ve been wanting to overhaul, so this one was good practice and an interesting experiment.
But, as usual, I was too excited to get started and forgot to take the “before” pics. I feel like nothing stays in the Hideaway for more than a day before I enlist John to help me drag it out to the carport for some TLC! So here’s the table a few minutes into the initial sanding process:
Both the tabletop finish and the paint needed some serious sprucing up. Since I knew I was going to paint over the legs, I just lightly hand-sanded them to even out any dents or scratches, and to rough up the surface a bit. As for the top, I attacked that sucker with an electric sander (we use a Black & Decker that we picked up at Home Depot), starting with 60-grit and working up to 180. I thought removing the finish was going to be a piece of cake since it looked so worn, but it would just. not. come. off! By the end of the afternoon I was COVERED in sanding dust and looked like a bag of flour had exploded on me. Fun.
Here’s a cigar-sized burn that was driving me nuts. Every time I ran over it with the sander, more of it came off, but I could never manage to get to the bottom. This thing was deep! John and I agreed that with the dark walnut stain I was planning to use on the tabletop, the burn would just look like a cool knot in the wood and add some character. So some of it stayed:
After everything was sanded, smoothed and cleaned, I got to work on staining the tabletop. I started with a coat of Minwax Pre-Stain Wood Conditioner to ensure even application of the stain. After letting that dry for a few minutes, I applied an even coat of Minwax Wood Finish in Dark Walnut. It’s oil-based, so it smells awful and needs to be cleaned up with mineral spirits, but we’ve had great results with it in the past and I wasn’t feeling like experimenting TOO much with this table. After 20 minutes, we wiped off the excess with a rag and voila! The color was even deeper than we’d been expecting, and we loved it. 2 coats of satin polyurethane, with plenty of dry time and a light sanding in between, and this was the result:
Shiny! Love it. As for the legs, I primed them with my trusty Zinsser BIN primer and painted them with 3 coats of my favorite barely-off-white color, Behr Swiss Coffee. It’s an off-the-shelf color and is just right for the bright, airy, coastal look we’ve been going for at the Hideaway.
I’m loving the results of this project! I hadn’t worked with stain in a while, since we’d been encountering so much laminate furniture lately, so it was nice to get to break out something different. The color looks gorgeous and I just love the hidden extension panel…super functional and still allows the table to fit nicely in the space. A perfect dining table for our vacation rental!« overhauling the coffee table oahu shopping: soha living »