This table was beautiful oak, but in desperate need of refinishing. I decided to really make it pop by distressing the bottom and restoring the top giving it a high shine. I hope you like the finished project!
This is what the table looked like when I started. It was nice, but the varnish was chipped and had water rings. I had to refinish it either way so I decided to paint the bottom in white chalk paint. I make my chalk paint by using a disposable container and pour a cup or two of paint into the jar. I then add a spoonful or two of plaster of paris to the paint and stir like crazy. I start with just a tiny amount of plaster and slowly add more until I get the consistency I want. I like my chalk paint thick because it takes less coats, but a thinner consistency works just as well. I have used this method on several of my children's furniture and it has held up beautifully.
I normally only paint two coats with the chalk paint. It looks splotchy in the picture, but it's going to be heavily distressed so I don't worry too much about even coverage.
Once the paint is dry I sanded and sanded and sanded. I vow to NEVER use chalk paint on another piece with this much detail! It looks great now, but the thick chalk paint filled in a lot of the detail and I had to really sand the details to define them again. Chalk paint is better suited for larger detailed pieces....or furniture that you want to look rustic.
One great thing about chalk paint is it dries hard in a fraction of the time of standard paint so you can finish projects quickly which is good for an impatient person like me!! After I distressed the bottom I used Minwax paste wax to protect and give the legs a soft shine.
The final step was to sand and stain the beautiful oak table top. I applied several coats of Minwax Polyshades in pecan. I LOVE this stain!! I have tried other brands, but I feel this one gives a great shine and hard seal all in one step! I use wide sponge brushes and work the stain into the wood and then take the time to brush in the direction of the grain until I have removed as many bubbles as possible. I occasionally can get away with only sanding once between coats, but usually have to sand twice between applications. I lightly sand with 220 grit or steelwool depending on the imperfections I need to remove.
I just love the shine the top has compared to the soft wax finish on the legs. Now I need to find this sweetie a place in our home!!
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