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What I Learned: This Amazing Table

This amazing table

The table is done and I’m blown away. In the words of Bernie Van De Yacht, who said the same thing about his North Hollywood kitchen remodel, “I can’t stop looking at it.”

You can see from the photo on the bottom right what I started out with: an old workbench that had been out in the weather for more years than any of us can recall. I pulled it away from the wall to get the house painted, and decided the old table needed to go to the dump pile.

But wait! I blogged about it, and several kind readers said the table should live on. I decided to turn it into a combination outdoor buffet table and work table and to retain its workbench personality.

My creative inspiration was adding the color chips, which are samples of laminate material for counters and cabinets that came strung together on a chain. I topped them off with bronze-colored furniture tacks.

What I did right:

• Saving the table from the dump pile.
• Getting input from others (you all, especially).
• Taking the time to sand the table, but not too much, and giving it several coats of polyurethane.
• Using the laminate chips, thus saving them from the landfill, was green brilliance.
• Adding the upholstery tacks, my husband Bill said, made the table.
• The final touch, adding a coat of tinted Briwax, gave it a wonderful sheen.

What I did wrong:

• At first I used wood glue to attach the chips, but it took a long time to set and I had to use a lot of clamps to hold the chips on. When I switched to hot-melt glue, things got easier.
• When I went to the hardware store to get more upholstery tacks, I got brown instead of bronze. So the ones on the back of the table have a little duller finish.
• I started to put color chips in a band around the leg braces, but they looked tacky, not classy, so I peeled them off.

Other than that, I’m thrilled with my creation. What do you think?


3 Comments on What I Learned: This Amazing Table

  1. It looks great!

  2. Your table looks very nice, but I would also paint the legs with one of the colors represented in the laminate samples. Or wait, maybe — does anyone have some etra green paint lying around? The reason I am saying this is because the wood on the legs is just not that pretty. But you should definitely be proud of the job you have done, not only in restoring the table, but in inspiring others not to toss out what looks to be junk.

  3. use what you have! i love it. i might have painted the top of the table as well, but even so it looks really nice – a rough-edged sort of modern.

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