Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Isnt She Lovely

Refinishing a wood table sounded fairly simple but my reality was much different. As a first timer I ran into a multitude of problems and had to start from scratch on more than one occassion. Its been lots of hard work and patience but Im pleased to finally show off my new "old" table

Completed TABLE!!! WHOOHOOOO!!!!

and here she is with the inserts

Excuse the chairs.. they are TEMPORARY

My original attempt at refinishing the table can be found HERE . To refresh your memory this is the orginal oak table:

How I refinished a wood table

Materials Needed
Electric Sander
60 grit Sandpaper
Mask for your mouth
foam brush
 Clean Rags
sticky cloth
white paint
plastic gloves

1. Sand down your table using an electric sander with a 60 grit paper. Be sure to get the edges and ensure that you have removed any previous paint, stain, and polyurethane.

2. Once sanding is complete its very important that any excessive dust is removed. I used a dry clean rag, a damp rag and tacky cloth. Its now time to apply your stain. I used Dark Walnut by Minwax. Apply using a clean brush and ensure even coverage. Let the stain sit for 10 - 20 minutes before wiping it off with a dry clean white rag and let dry.
I wanted a rich colour so I repeated the stain application 4 times.

 3. Once your desired colour is achieved you must apply polyurethane. I used a semigloss by Minwax and applied a thin even coat using a foam brush. Once the poly dried I repeated this step 3 more times to ensure a strong poly coverage since this table would be used and abused.

 4. I wanted the base of the table to have a distressed look. I was not interested in sanding so I used a great primer by CIL. After wiping down the base to ensure it was free of dust I applied the base with a brush.  You could apply 2 coats but I opted for just one.

5. Once the primer dried I applied regular latex paint which I chose not to tint and let dry. Again I only applied one coat as I was going for a distressed look.

6. Using a small bit of sandpaper I distressed some areas of the base to give it that worn look. I focussed more on the outer ridges and areas that would most likely see more wear. I have 2 little ones under four years old so I might as well start wearing it out now. Mostly the original dark polish shined through which is exactly what i wanted.

7. Finally I attempted to apply a bit of dark glaze to the base to get rid of the crispy white colour. The can had gone bad and of course since Im impatient I went ahead and used it anyhow. I applied with a brush and wiped it away with a damp cloth.  No harm done and it still made the white look a little "dirty"

I would have had better results if the glaze was still good, it would have really darkened the stressed areas to a black but I think the overall effect is pretty good

And a few tips
  • 60 grit sandpaper worked best for me when sanding the orginal stain and poly
  • Brushing stain on rather than using a rag to apply it seemed to work well
  • Make sure your hands, arms, legs and feet are covered when applying stain. I learned the hardway and became a walking polka dot for a few days.
  • The longer you leave the stain on the darker the color however you should remove the stain before 30 minutes otherwise it becomes thick and difficult to remove.
  • When applying poly, the label suggests sanding in between coats to ensure a smooth finish. I would NOT suggest sanding. Sanding with the suggested 220 paper ruined the table and forced me to begin from scratch. I sanded again using a 400 grit paper and this also ruined the table. Save yourself alot of hassle and just apply thin even coats of poly so you can avoid the sanding.

Thanks for visiting, I hope you like our new table as much as we do :)

Kitchen / Dining
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find new Light Fixture
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Growth Chart


  1. Looks great! /good for you for persevering... a lot of work but worth it.

  2. Thanks, this project has taught me about patience.. and the end result is pretty good

  3. It looks AMAZING!!!!

  4. Hello
    I love this work. I did the same on my furniture of the corridor.

  5. I love this look, great job! When you say you used a dark glaze, can you tell me more specifically what that was? I'd like to try this on my table and am not sure what to buy to replicate this look.

    1. Thanks so much for your kind words :)
      The glaze I used was a Rustoleum Product called American Accents and it was the Distressed Ivory. The glaze came in a kit along with paint and everything you would need to distress a small piece of furniture (usually for less than $25) The kit was once sold everywhere from Walmart to Home Depot. I haven't seen it in a few years, however the last place I spotted it was at Rona. If you cannot find this kit, you could purchase a small can of furniture glaze in black or dark brown offered at almost any hardware store. Just ask the paint consultant on duty. Its very diluted, use a brush to apply and wipe it off afterwards. Good luck, Im sure your table will be amazing!!


Thanks for your comments!!