I was going to wait till I had finished room photos, but I think most of you enjoy seeing the progress. So today, I'm sharing every detail (the hiccups and frustrations too!) Mostly to show that DIY, furniture re dos, etc. aren't always as easy or quick as they appear on t.v. shows or online.
Black Friday, I was in Goodwill hunting for furniture, I came across a set of 4 MCM dining chairs, $6 each. I texted Cassie and asked if she was interested (I had no where for them and have WAY too many chairs
With the 50% off, we got the table and 4 chairs for $19.50!! I've been on the hunt for a tulip table for this space, so this a great substitute!
The base is very Mid Century Modern .. the top is ok (minus the laminate top) but it feels very traditional. The bottom lip is to accommodate the track for leaves (which weren't included). So we decided to remove the track for the leaves and side panels for a cleaner, more Mid Century Modern top to match the base.
(sorry for the mess in the before photo!) I forgot to take a picture of the bottom, but it had a huge track for the leaves. Since it was all attached with screws, we removed everything, so we were just left with the 1" laminate top. There was also a 1" board underneath the table - so we drew a circle and cut it out with the jigsaw.
We glued the two tops together with wood glue.
Glued the round piece to the bottom (holding the top snugly together) and screwed it in place (note: pre- drill your holes and make sure your screws are long enough to go through both pieces, but not too long that they go all the way through).
Since we joined two pieces together, we needed to make the transition as seamless as possible. First we tried wood filler (since that's what we had on hand) but quickly realized that we needed something more substantial. So, we picked up a can of Bondo, auto body filler (we got ours at Home Depot, any hardware store should carry it)
It's pretty simple, you apply it with a scraper (thinner is easiest to sand later!!) and then sanded (I think 80 grit and then 120 or 220 grit) The key with Bondo is that you want the outer edges to be a seamless transition where it ends. The Bondo should be pretty translucent on the edges, so we used finer sandpaper on the edges (320 and 400 grit)
We repeated this a few times till we ran our hands over it and it felt pretty seamless.
We wiped the dust off and primed with Kilz Adhesion bonding primer - formulated to bond to slick surfaces. For the top coat, I used Rustoleum Glossy Enamel (oil based). For a smoother finisher, lightly sand (220 grit) and remove the dust with a cloth between coats)
Here's a few things to know about oil based paint prior to using it:
- Oil based paint is a pain to clean up (so brushes will need to be cleaned with mineral spirits or thrown away)
- It is stinky - so painting outside is a must!
- It has a slow drying time - 24 hours between coats, this also allows more time for dust to get stuck in the paint, so a debris free area is best. Also, prior to using it, the paint should cure for at least a week
- It covers SO well, you will most likely only need 2 coats.
- The key to getting a smooth finish is not over brushing (natural bristle brush works best) only go over an area with a few passes and move on, leave the brush strokes, they will self level. Apply a thicker coat to horizontal surfaces and thinner coats on vertical surfaces to prevents drips.
- It is a great way to get a super durable, glossy, lacquer like look!
Next, why this fairly simple project took forever ... One word, indecision. I originally wanted to leave the base wood (I even sanded it all the way down) You can see here that the wood is pieced together and not very pretty (it had a heavy painted stain on it to hide the mis matched wood) I decided to leave the wood natural, but then decided that it definitely didn't look right with the chairs. So then I stained it to match the chairs and it sat like this for several weeks .. it looked too matchy matchy with the light top and dark base. But, since I spent so much time sanding it, I wanted to sit on it for a little ..
In the end, I decided to paint it a glossy white (I spray painted with a glossy enamel)
So happy that I did! Before staining, I knew I probably wasn't going to be happy with it, but I did it anyways because I spent lots of time sanding and staining .. I normally fight indecision by doing mock -ups in photoshop.
Here's three (roughly) photoshopped versions ..
Normally this works really well for me .. but, since the sanding took forever .. it was clouding my judgement.
Now, what I wasn't second guessing? Removing the traditional top for a sleeker, more Mid Century Modern look. Love it!
The chairs were fairly simple to refurbish. I gave them a good wipe down (they were SO dirty) with water and white vinegar. Then I used Restore a Finish to freshen them up. The seat was reupholstered with Nate Berkus wide mint stripe,
We'll be changing the dining room a little bit more, but here's what it looks like now!
This post was a little wordier than normal, but hopefully it helps explain how every project doesn't go exactly as planned.. I definitely recommend lots of planning and using mock ups BEFORE starting on a project! Still, (especially if you're a visual person like me) sometimes you need to just start and learn from your mistakes to see what works and what doesn't. Most importantly, trust your gut!
Have a great week friends!!