Friday, August 10, 2012

Coffee Table Re-Do!

 I bought this coffee table at a garage sale over 6 months ago - I paid $2 for it!  I didn't really know what I wanted to do with it - I figured I would paint it or something.  So, it sat in the backyard for months and months.  After reading I Heart Naptime's post on DIY Chalk Paint, I was inspired to paint something.  This coffee table was the perfect candidate!
 Step #1
Have your husband kill the black widow spider that is living in the underside of the table.  YIKES!!!
 I loved the tutorial from I Heart Naptime.  She does an amazing job of explaining each step and her piece of furniture came out fabulous.  You should check it out!!  I followed her steps pretty closely.

#2 Sand
This table had spots of glitter glue all over it from it's previous owner.  I felt that a good sanding would help my table get off to a good start.  I didn't sand down to the grain - just till it was smooth.
 #3 Base Color
My goal in this piece was to distress it.  I wanted a black color showing through (you can use any color - or even have the wood show through)  I used some black paint and painted the edges and spots on the surface.  Looking back, I would have given the entire table a coat of black because I couldn't remember where I put my spots on the top!!

#4 Vaseline
This is a technique to help the base color show through the top color.  I have also seen it done with candle wax.  Rub the Vaseline along the edges and parts where you want the black to show through - this will give it a shabby chic or rustic look depending on how much sanding you do. 

#5 the Chalk Paint Mixture
This is where we will get that worn, vintage feel to our paint.  I went to Lowe's and purchased latex paint in a light aqua color.  I asked for Satin finish and when I got home I noticed it was semi-gloss.  I was a little miffed, but it worked fine anyway. 

Mix 5 Tablespoons of Plaster of Paris with 2 to 3 Tablespoons water in a small container
Then measure 2 cups of paint in a separate container and stir the plaster mixture into the paint until it's smooth.  This was the right amount for the size of table I was painting.

#6 Paint Paint Paint
I gave my table 3 coats of paint with a paint brush, letting it dry completely between coats.  Some items may only need 2 coats of paint.

#7 Inspection
Make sure your cat inspects your work, getting his paws, tail and back in the paint!!

#8 Sanding
Take a light weight sand paper and sand where ever you want the black to show through.  I sanded all the edges, curves, and random areas on the top.  This is where the Vaseline helps so you don't have to sand like crazy - especially with 3 coats of paint!  It worked great!!

 #9 Finishing Wax
This is my favorite part of the project!  Use Minwax Paste Finishing Wax.  Get a rag and rub it all over your piece of furniture.  Then let it sit for 20-30 minutes.  Take another cloth and buff or polish the wax.  The wax gives it a vintage look as it is not glossy or too shiny, yet not flat.  It's the perfect finish for this project.  If you are finishing a piece that needs to be durable, such as a kitchen table, I suggest polyurethane or polycrylic - it will be more durable.  You can get those in satin finish so they aren't too glossy.

 Ta Da!!!!
It's done & I LOVE it so much!!!

 I would totally paint furniture using this technique again.  When I bought the $2 table I was thinking $4 of spray paint and it's done.  This process was lots more $$ but still cheaper than buying real chalk paint.  Plus I have plenty of Plaster of Paris and finishing wax to do several more projects - YEA!!!


  1. It turned out great! Love the color that you chose. It really gave the table a new life. :) Megan

  2. You only paid $2 for that! Wow - what a deal. Do you rub the vaseline on it before you paint it? I've never heard of that before, sounds interesting.

  3. Amanda!! Fun to see this link on my blog. I love it. Wanna do one for me? I'm featuring it tomorrow. ;) xo

  4. I don't understand the Plaster of Paris part...why? and does that make it a chalkboard paint - please explain!