I found this coffee table at Salvation Army in Boulder for $12 and saw some potential. We need a coffee table with rounded edges (so Liam–my two year old–can’t hurt himself too badly) and I liked the table top with different wood directions.
Phase One: Here is the table after I stripped the varnish off but before sanding it down.
My shopping list included: citrus paint stripper, my first power tool (an electric sander, dark brown wood stain–for the top, cream paint–for the legs, clear varnish to prevent scratches and water stains.
Staining is intimidating to me! My first attempt at stripping and staining a piece was a bathroom cabinet door at our first house. It was a big improvement from the floral painting that was on the door, but I had some unevenness and darker spots that I was not too happy with. So, my back up plan here is to just paint the whole thing if staining goes awry. One challenge with this table is that the wood inlays on top are thin and when I sanded it I chipped a corner and also some edges frayed. I am wondering if these edges stain darker or if they will blend in. We will see!
Phase Two: I am a failure at staining! Or maybe, prepping to stain. It looked great all conditioned and ready to stain, but every unevenness and every time I didn’t go with the grain when sanding showed. Honestly, it looked worse than when I first started (the pictures don’t quite capture the ugliness)! So, Yay for paint!! I will try staining something else again, but I will need wood that goes all one direction, and maybe a tutor who is a seasoned pro.
Phase Three: Paint! I found a fun color combination at Home Depot and decided to try it. I’m happy with how it turned out–but poor thing had to go through a lot. I think I must have learned something though–maybe to stick to paint for awhile!