painting sunny

A Strange Little Table Redo


There are some benefits for working at a big state university and living in a quaint little college town, and one of them is the amount of used furniture lying around the place. Sure, 80% of it is old tweed sofas from fraternity houses… but the other 20% is amazing. We are lucky that Indiana University has a surplus store that sells mostly leftover industrial furniture, but occasionally antiques and other odd items. I walked past a dark, dusty little antique table one week and thought “That would be a cute little plant stand for by the window” until I saw the $40 price tag. Never mind  Luckily, their “daily special” the next week was antique furniture, and it was discounted to half the price. I took that as a sign from the mythological gods of second-hand furniture. $20 is still a little steep, considering it had a broken leg and was missing some trim-work  but there was something so… odd about the little table, it was charming.

PS table 2

Unfortunately, at the time I bought the table I had neither a blog nor a decent camera… so all I have is this old photo from my iPhone… pardon the message garage, please. It is still just as messy. Here is the before picture:

PS Old Table

Didn’t she clean up nice? She didn’t make it easy, though. I repaired the broken leg (it was cracked right in half) with a clamp and some wood glue, and let it sit overnight. It still isn’t quite as sturdy as I would like, but it does the job.

The bottom shelf also had a split down part of it, so I rubbed wood glue into the split and then tied it tight together.

The trim was missing in places, so I removed it along the short ends completely so I had at least enough spare pieces of it to fill in the gaps along the long-sides. You can see the little nail holes a bit in the picture below. Gives it character…

PS 12

I sanded the short sides smooth, and used Miss Mustard Seed’s Milk Paint in Tricycle Red. I didn’t add any bonding agent, and I didn’t sand the rest of the table. The wood was a little dry, and it was my first time ever using milk paint (scary!) but I had a feeling it would soak in okay.

PS 14

Two coats of milk paint later, I rubbed two nice coats of Miss Mustard Seed’s furniture wax into it and buffed it to a nice shine. It distressed a little bit on it’s own (as it is supposed to) but I buffed a couple spots with some fine sandpaper (before waxing it) and I like how it turned out. It makes the wood underneath look like it was actually in decent shape!

PS 13

Paloma the Cat photo-bombs.

PS table cat photobombFor my first time using milk paint, I can say it wasn’t stressful at all, and I love that it is low VOC and safe around the kids and kitty. I’ve used it again since then (will talk more about those projects later!) and am sure I will again… I’m pretty much out of paint, though, so I’ll have to wait until the change jar gets a little more full.

PS: This is not a sponsored post. All opinions are my own, and I have not received compensation for anything written. Keepin’ it real.

PSS: This post was linked to Furniture Feature Friday At A Time on Miss Mustard Seed‘s Blog. Thank you! Gotta love a link party.


Author: Dani @ Painting Sunny

Hi there! I'm Dani, and it's lovely to meet you. My little family just moved to the quaint little college-town of Ithaca, NY and are loving it. Come hang out with me and talk about food, books, art, and other odd little things.

12 thoughts on “A Strange Little Table Redo

  1. Hi Dani! What a cool table! You sure don’t see things like this every day. I love what you did with it, that red is so pretty. Genius idea on the trim too!

  2. PS: Thank you so much for the blog roll lovin! :)

  3. Daniii! This is amazing!I remember when you first got this table! I also read all the other posts! You are amazing!

  4. Pingback: Fit for a Princess: DIY Vintage-style Bed Makeover « painting sunny

  5. Very good written post. It will be beneficial to everyone who usess it, as well as myself. Keep up the good work – looking forward to more posts.

  6. There is something so eye-catching and vibrant about red. I love it:)

  7. Pingback: A brighter, lighter, whiter vintage children’s desk | painting sunny

  8. Pingback: Tenacious Tenant: Renter-Friendly DIY | painting sunny

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