Sunday, April 29, 2012

The Story of the $6 Table

If you have talked to me at all in the past month or two, you have undoubtedly heard about my mom and my garage sale finds (and probably in greater detail than you care to)(sorry). You may have heard about the Ethan Allen chair I have been redoing, or the 2 ugly-pink wingback chairs (in good condition though) that my mother got for $15 and plans to re-upholster (lol). I'm sure you've heard about the epic $6 table though.
        It was being sold by a very young couple who was raising money to adopt domestically. Their friends had donated tons of things for them to hold a garage sale and Friday morning was their "practice run" they said. The couple obviously didn't know much about garage sales and, as opposed to most in this state, were selling everything really cheap. Perhaps this was actually a genius strategy because things were literally flying off the lawn--the woman couldn't even drag everything outside because of all the people asking her for prices. When she told me $6 for the table, I was shocked and to this day I wish I could remember their address so I could drop a check in their mailbox. This table needed quite a bit of work and was never going to look like new, but it was worth a good deal more than six measly bucks and they were obviously a loving young couple who just wanted a child. The guilt will probably stick with me for a while. Anyway, this table was exactly what I had been looking for and perfect for the distressed farmhouse table look I have been envying. Here is what I did with the $6 table:

Original state

Here it is in the original state--partially stripped top, cracked and dry wood, primed apron and legs. Somebody obviously had grand plans for this table but never got around to it.

Sanded and ready to go

It was hard to tell, but any sort of finish seemed to have been previously removed, so I sanded the crap of out it (until the electric sander spontaneously broke, not my fault I swear!) It took a couple days, esp when I had to finish it by hand, and I breathed in way too much dust from this. Yeah, you know what that means--wooden boogies. Ew. Moving on!

Stained table-top

After sanding it to a buttery softness, and sanding off way too much of my nails, I stained the top a nice chestnut color. I also distressed the legs a bit because when I sand through the Annie Sloan (AS) chalk paint, I would rather a darker color show through instead of the stark white primer. (Remember, with AS chalk paint neither priming nor sanding is required, this was just what was done already/needed to be done for the effect I wanted.)

Save your judgement for the next stage!

Now, I know you are seeing this picture and immediately questioning my judgement. Believe me, I know--St. Patricks Day. That's all I could think about when I saw it, 'I hate it I hate it I hate it' would play through my head and I stopped working on it briefly because it frustrated me so much. (You don't want to know how long my first project took me). This AS color is called Antibes green, and I really love it, but as-is it just wasn't right for this table. Thankfully, it gets a lot better.

The next step is to wax and distress the apron and legs. And in this case, dark wax the crap out of it too, which will prove to be the saving grace for the $6 table. Check back to see the final results, I am in the process of finishing her up and getting pictures!

Have a lovely week!

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