Table Transformation

I am so sorry about my recent unexpected hiatus, we have been so busy every weekend and this whole two jobs thing with its leaving the house at 8am and not returning until 10pm has really gotten the best of me.  Then throw in the beautiful weather we’ve been having and this sun worshiper has trouble staying inside.  But that’s enough for the excuses, I am enjoying my first real night off in I don’t know how long and have my MacBook outside with me while I bask in the last few hours of sunshine today.

I can’t believe I didn’t think of this plan sooner, or perhaps the whole 10pm getting home after the sun is LONG down and it is way past my bed time got in my way.  Either way, aside from the big grey beast lifting his leg on the back of my chair {yes that happened, i guess it’s his chair now} and having to make a quick switch, things are looking up!  Alright enough about my problems {dog pee included}, on to the post.

I think everyone knows about the in-law woes, we’ve all heard them,but luckily for me I won the in-law lottery.  Honestly, I don’t know how this happened {I didn’t buy a ticket} but I lucked out big time.  My mother-in-law is kind of a goddess, you see she actually enjoys going to HomeSense with me {or at least is a great actress}, tolerates my major slight shopping addiction whenever we’re together and get this, she even supports my crazy DIY makeovers!  Supports and encourages I should say.

Remember that sexy looking turquoise buffet in our living room?  That was a teak piece she gave us and let me have free rein with.  Well along with that beautiful buffet came these two end tables.

Simply Style Blog - Table Transformation{before}

Now these things are some big teak tables, they are not some delicate end table you can just plop anywhere that is for sure AND they have these fancy “secret” drawers that you don’t even know exist.

Simply Style Blog - Table Transformation{before}

When they first arrived I have to be honest, I was a little intimated by their stature and physique.  They stand 21.5 inches tall and are 20.5 by 29.5 across the top. I had no clue what I was going to do with them, but much like the other “donations” to our furniture cause, I embraced them with open arms {and a slightly uncertain mind}.

They found their home in our disaster of a family room {that is another post in itself} but were functioning more as “stuff” holders than tables.  When we finally got the family room in some semblance of order, I pushed the two together to make a coffee table and quickly fell in love with the concept.

Remember those snazzy secret drawers, well they are pretty awesome to hide remotes, coasters and other junk useful stuff that accumulates on top of coffee tables and the height of these beauties far surpasses that of any regular old coffee table which is a pretty phenomenal thing when you have a great big Weimaraner to contend with.  I also kind of love how they are two tables that can be pulled apart when we have company to give more drink resting space.  Needless to say, the once homeless unloved gigantic teak end tables had found their permanent home.

I should probably mention that these tables arrived in May of last year before we even moved into our house.  They then sat in that same shape for a year until I finally determined what I was going to do with them.  They were in a bit of rough shape after already living a long well loved life with my in-laws and had several rings and water marks as well a few paint spills {since they may or may not have been used as paint can rests during the painting of the entire house}.

Simply Style Blog - Table Transformation


I decided that I was going to attempt the two-tone look.  I have a bit of a “natural wood” theme running through the family room and wanted to keep some of the natural character of the tables.  I also didn’t want go all “I have every piece of furniture in my house painted a bright colour” kind of crazy on these as is entirely possible with my furniture painting obsession.  Anyways, I decided I would stain the tops and the shelves and paint the legs.  I began by sanding the table tops to remove some of the marks and give the stain a more even surface to adhere to.

Simply Style Blog - Table Transformation{before}

Simply Style Blog - Table Transformation{thank you dad for lending your sander to the cause}

Once the tables her sanded I got to staining.  I hate staining.  There I said it.  What was I thinking?  Gloves are good, remember that, I didn’t.  Also, a little stain goes a LONG way, you don’t need a litre to do two tables… lesson learned.  All of that being said, the staining wasn’t THAT bad.  I used Minwax  Polyshades in Mission Oak, it’s a two in one stain that has the polyeurethene right in there so there was no sealing step {love that}.  I applied it with a brush and since I wanted a rough somewhat “rustic” feel I wasn’t too worried about the most perfect application.

Simply Style Blog - Table Transformation{staining}

Simply Style Blog - Table Transformation{before & after staining}

Simply Style Blog - Table Transformation{after staining}

Once the tables were stained I called on this very obscure elusive skill I discovered I possess a little of, it’s called patience.  Sure, you may have patience coming out the wazzoo but me on the other hand, I am seriously lacking in the patience department, so to call on this little known skill in my world was pretty impressive when I set my tables aside for 2 whole days to dry {properly} for once.

Then came time to move forward with the next step of the process and it was then I had a bit of a mini crisis as to whether I should proceed with my two-tone plans.  I loved the way the tops of the tables had turned out and didn’t want to ruin my favourite impromptu coffee table with my evil white paint.  The deciding factor was that the colour of the stained tables is really close to the colour of our floors in the family room and without a rug {because I own a chihuahua that has a vendetta against all carpet like structures} I was afraid it would make the space too dark without any real break between floor and table.  So I charged ahead with my white legs.  I taped off all the exposed stained areas that could come in contact with paint and got to priming.

 Simply Style Blog - Table Transformation{tables stained and beginning taping}

Simply Style Blog - Table Transformation{taping for priming}

You obviously love my high tech levitation system {and Shaq’s childs sandbox turned doggie pool in the background}.  I used the same technique to do my kitchen cabinet doors but enlisted apple juice and soup cans as well!  After struggling through the priming and painting of the teak buffet, I knew I was going to have to tackle this with extra care since I wanted the legs to be white.  I used my favourite Stix primer from Benjamin Moore and did three coats.  Just like the buffet, the existing stain soaked through the primer so the extra coats were necessary to ensure I would end up with white table legs instead of tan ones.

Simply Style Blog - Table Transformation{primed table legs}

Simply Style Blog - Table Transformation{primed}

You can see here the table legs aren’t just legs but wrap up around the side of the table too, this was a big part of my struggle with going two-tone, but I think the whole look is working.  Though the table legs look good primed you can see below the amount of colour the primer soaks up.

Simply Style Blog - Table Transformation{primed vs. painted}

Transforming the legs a crisp clean white was important so I used what was left of the Benjamin Moore Advance that we used on the hexagon tables, since it dries like enamel it is great for furniture!

Simply Style Blog - Table Transformation{Benjamin Moore Advance – Chantilly Lace}

After two coats of paint, they were good to go.  I summoned some more of that patience stuff before pealing off the tape.

Simply Style Blog - Table Transformation{painted – hi shaq}

Now I want to share the oops moments, the what went wrongs and the imperfections.  All too often when I am reading about DIYs it seems to go so smoothly for these secret experts DIYers.  They tackle a project and it turns out PERFECT.  Whether or not that is the reality, it is yet to be seen at my house. With every DIY something goes a little astray.  Not every seam on my DIY pillows is perfect, not every inch of my painted furniture is flawless, this is the reality for me and I am totally okay with that.  So now to share the oopses, the oh s!*t moments and the imperfections that make this project all DIY and perfectly imperfect.

Simply Style Blog - Table Transformation{working outside there were a few casualties, this guy and the better part of his family succumbed to dark stain in the sun}

Simply Style Blog - Table Transformation{I am not a good taper, I just shouldn’t tape}

Simply Style Blog - Table Transformation{a more major taping oops}

Simply Style Blog - Table Transformation{the most major taping oops}

Simply Style Blog - Table Transformation{and even days of patience couldn’t save this spot}

Simply Style Blog - Table Transformation{i’m sorry frog tape, I let you down!}

As you can see, I am not perfect {shocking} and lots goes wrong, but that is part of the fun of it.  These were easy fixes.  When painting just about anything, I swear by having on hand some cheapo dollar store paint brushes on hand.  I buy a set of 5 or 6 every so often and even when painting rooms, I love using these to touch up little details that may not be perfect.

Simply Style Blog - Table Transformation{keep dollar store paint brushes on hand to fix the oopses}

After a few minor touch ups, the new to us teak tables were like new once again!  I called on a little more of that patience {after this project I am fresh out for like a year or so} and set the tables in the shed to dry for about a week.  The Advance paint needs to cure and I wanted it to have the most time possible before bringing them into our heavily used family room.

Simply Style Blog - Table Transformation{after}

Simply Style Blog - Table Transformation{after}

Simply Style Blog - Table Transformation{after}

Simply Style Blog - Table Transformation{before and after}

I am so happy with how they turned out and love that I am able to keep my gigantor tables as my coffee table.  What do you think of the two toned tables?  I am so looking forward to showing you how they look in our {work in progress} family room!



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