Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Dining Table

Some time ago I decided that we'd outgrown our dining room table.
I still loved the table, but it just didn't provide us with enough room. It was meant to seat 4, and we often have people over for dinner, parties, etc.
We needed more space.
So I shopped online to find something I loved.
Of COURSE this monster from Pottery Barn caught my eye.
$1000 for the table
$200 for the side chairs, $280 for the arm chairs.

So I pulled out my credit card and paid extra for super-fast delivery so I could have it by the weekend.


Yeah, right.
Actually, I started cruising craigslist and ksl.com (a local news stations classified site.)
I wasn't in any hurry. I had a tight budget and a clear idea of what I wanted, so I played it cool even when a couple dining sets popped up that looked like they might be perfect. If the seller wasn't willing to negotiate on price, I was out.
(Very proud of myself for that, btw!)
I found this set fairly early on, but wasn't willing to pay what the seller was asking.
The ad said they were selling the table because they were moving out of state, so I told them that if it hadn't sold by the time they were ready to go, I'd give them $100 for it.

(these were the pictures posted with the for sale ad)

A month later, it was mine :)
It measures 42x60, without the leaf, which adds another 24 inches to the length.
We shouldn't be outgrowing a 7 foot dining table anytime soon!
It came with 6 chairs, though the seller did warn me that one was "kind of beat up"

To be honest, the whole thing was "kind of beat up" - if "kind of" means "really".
Also, those lines which look like grooves in the above photos were not. They were painted on.
The table top required a lot of sanding. A lot.

There were some crazy-deep scratches in the surface of the table. I used some plastic wood to fill them in.

Luckily, I was going for a sort of weathered look. A Pottery Barn-distressed-chic look. It worked :)

Obviously those 90's era metal bars in the back of the chairs weren't going to work. Ick. Seriously.
I went after the backs with an assortment of tools. Screwdrivers, hammer and a variety of things that I'm certain I wasn't using correctly.
After the first one they came out pretty smoothly.

The whole thing got several (as in, like, 100) coats of Heirloom White Rustoleum.
On the table top I actually used Behr's new premium paint in a color whose name I can't recall, but which matches Heirloom White exactly. I rolled the paint on, then brushed over it to mimic how the wood actually was underneath - length wise except at the ends where it went width wise. Rolling it on first made it just the tiniest bit tacky, which meant I got a good amount of brush stroke in the paint. I was very fast and sort of slip-shod in my brushing - and it turned out perfectly, looks just like wood grain. (patting myself on the back.)
Over the paint I rubbed a minwax stain in Golden Pecan. I made sure to really rub it into all the distressed areas. After just a moment, I wiped it off. It gave the creamy paint color a lot of depth and made it really gorgeous.
Over the top I put 2 coats of polyurethane. Over the polyurethane I put 2 coats of polyacrylic. I love the way polyacrylic looks, and I have 2 kids. Extra coats of poly seemed like a good idea.

The table took about a week of sanding, painting, sanding, painting, staining and poly-ing.
The chairs were where the real work was.

Once I had them sanded, painted and stained I recovered their cushions.
At this point, we moved everything in from the garage and started using it.
I knew I needed to do something to the backs, but wasn't sure exactly what, and I wanted my parking spot back, so they got moved in backless.
Not comfortable, btw.

After a couple of weeks of discussing every possible solution, (and talking to several woodworking shops in the area, none of whom were helpful) I decided to do it myself.
I bought 3/4 inch MDF from the Home Dept and drew a template. Then I used a scroll saw (with Matt's help - I kept breaking blades!) to cut them out. Lots of sanding, some distressing, painting (etc.) later - and it was finally done!

The project turned out better than I even hoped.
I am as proud of this table and chairs as I have ever been about anything I've ever created.
Including my children.
For real.

After my mother in law had seen the table she found out I had refinished it.
She told me she had no idea - she thought it was from Pottery Barn.
I was so happy I barely refrained from jumping up and down.
Best. Compliment. Ever.
:)



Next Up: a bench for the kids to sit on (I'm terrified they're going to ruin my new upholstry!) and a centerpiece that will do my baby justice.

Linking up with ASPTL for DIY Day :)

105 comments:

Ashley said...

That is the coolest transformation! The backs of the chairs look great and just like the pottery barn ones! I can't believe you did that all by hand! Great job! Super impressive!

Ruth Shanahan Allmart said...

wow! That's fantastic and a lot of work. Congratulations on a job well done :)

Michelle said...

Your very hard work paid off...it's absolutely beautiful!

Have a wonderful Wednesday!
~Michelle :)

Kimberly said...

Great job Mandy!
It really does look fantastic!

I'm actually planning on re-doing our table after we go camping this weekend..I had a round table up here for awhile..but pulled back up the rectangle with benches...
I'm going to sand it, and re-stain it. Probaly a dark wood, almost black. I think anyway. We'll see what happens.

Hattie said...

Love it! You did an awesome job. I painted my table white in the spring, and it feels so fresh. You were smart with the poly - I should have taken the time to use some.

Kim @ NewlyWoodwards said...

Wow! That is gorgeous! It looks like a TON of work, but must be worth it. For $100 for that table... total score. =)

Liz @ It's Great To Be Home said...

Love it!!! How did you secure the new inserts into the back of the chairs? Looks fab!

ani said...

that is an amazing transformation! it's gorgeous. great job!

Jane said...

Playing it cool on craigslist is the key! Lots of hard work paid off here!

heidi said...

Nice work! I love it!

Stephanie said...

it looks fab! way better than pb's! : )

melissa * 320 Sycamore said...

Fabulous! Better than PB because look how much you saved!

Jennifer Juniper said...

I love how it turned out!

Oh, and I've been shopping for chandeliers this week and noticed you love the PB candle one to the right...well, a VERY similar one is on Overstock right now for cheap. Just sayin' :)

Lynette said...

Um....Holy Crap! You so ROCK. I'm with Sandy, I would have NEVER known that it wasn't from Pottery Barn.

Dusa said...

Amazing! Truly inspiring that you had a vision and fulfilled it (scrolly backs were brilliant!)

Heidi said...

F-A-B-ulous!
Nice job making your vision a reality!

The Stitcherbee said...

It looks wonderful! Fabulous transformation.

Katherine @ Grass Stains said...

You are totally justified in your pride! It took a lot of blood, sweat and tears, but you did it! It really does look like something from PB ... MY FAVORITE PLACE EVAH, bt the way. I just wrote a post on Sunday that itemized two dining tables from PB that I'd die to have. And I have three boys, so I know what you mean about the upholstery!

Candace said...

Wow! That looks fabulous and you are right - it does look straight out of PB! But better because it has a story rather than just a "I picked it up or had it shipped" = love it!

Alyssa Barnett said...

What a fantastic makeover! I'm a little jealous but even more inspired!
Alyssa
lifeoflyssie.com

J and Company said...

Wow...I can't believe you made the backs of the chairs...that is a DIY that even I am afraid to try! Looks amazing!

Tiffany said...

Thanks for the sweet comment on my table/desk transformation. This table is amazing and I love, love, love what you did to those chairs! I'm searching for inspiration on a bench for my dining table right now too. I look forward to seeing what you come up with!

That Girl said...

gorgeous and you just gave me the guts to do it to my table. I keep thinking about it but I love yours so now I will do it!

Whitney said...

WOW! That is an awesome job and it looks like a lot of work, but it definitely paid off.

Jess and Brandon said...

Wow! Amazing. Great job Mandy!! I am so impressed.

Kimba said...

No way! I especially love what you did with the chairs! That was brilliant!

randee said...

how beautiful! i gasped when i saw the chair backs, they are amazing. you are talented. (you should win for those!)

thanks for your comments, i love all the birdie stuff, too. if you look at my 5/27 & 7/29 posts, you'll see more about the birdie toile & burlap.

peace -

pk said...

Beautiful transformation and your solution for the chair backs is IMPRESSIVE! Have a good weekend...
pk @ room remix

Amber said...

Beautiful!! I'm planning on doing something similar to my table soon. I love the look of a white painted dining set.

somedaycrafts said...

I give you $100 for that table and chairs!!! Love the backs of the chairs! Awesome!

Caro @ Thrifty n Curbside Treasures said...

WOWEEEE!!!!
what a fabu transformation! HOW cool you were to get it for that price too!

anhesty said...

fab fab fab! you did a great job!

Pam @ bibbidi-bobbidi-beautiful said...

Are you kidding me?!! You cut out the backs? Your own little self!!? I have got to get over my fear of power tools- this is too darn fabulous!

Britt said...

This looks amazing! I think I even like it better than the PB original! Great job!

Your cool friend Cheryl said...

Awesome job! Now you can go ahead and make another one to give to me.

Jennifer Juniper said...

I can't believe you did the backs. I'm. Floored.

Okay, where are you people getting this heirloom white??? I can't find it for the life of me!

Lorie said...

It is gorgeous! You did such a grea job and I am jealous!

Lucrecia said...

They painted lines on the table? There really should be a law against that!

LOVE the seat cushions - SO SO tempted to do something like that!

The DIY Show Off said...

WOW! All of your hard work paid off - that's an amazing transformation! I love it! SUPER job!

Roeshel

Char said...

Beautiful! LOVE it!

His Doorkeeper said...

Looks great! I always go to PB for ideas and then find nearly the same thing for cheaper!! So much more fun!

Amber said...

All of your hard work definitely paid off! Your new table is lovely. Great solution for the back of the chairs!

Amber B. said...

Whoa!! I am completely impressed! It does look like a PB table. And those chair backs are awesome. GREAT job!!

Melanie said...

The chair backs are brilliant! It looks fantastic!

Rhoda @ Southern Hospitality said...

What a great project! I'm totally impressed that you cut out those backs yourself. I love, love it all. Paint is the best transformer ever. Hope you'll stop by and visit me sometime.

Sarah said...

Stunning! I absolutely love it. The chair backs are amazing! Well done. :)

Sabrina said...

Holy Cow... that is amazing. You did an awesome job. The chair backs are stunning. So impressed and envious.

Miss Mustard Seed said...

Wow! What a transformation. Good for you to look at those chairs and see that Pottery Barn set coming out of them. Nicely done.

Nancy @ Live love laugh said...

Wow! you should be proud! That is beyond amazing!
~Nancy

kerry*lynne said...

brilliant...!
i never would have thought to make backs like that...!
it looks fabulous...:o)

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dining room tables said...

What a very nice transformation! I like it! You are really so creative and patient.

Kristieogw said...

Stunning! I absolutely love it. The chair backs are amazing! Well done. :)

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