"But wait!" you might say... "Isn't your boyfriend a fully employed individual?" Why yes, indeed he is. The trouble with the boyfriend (and he is getting better about this) is he has this notion that all things cost a max of $20. This is only a slight exaggeration.
So enter our need for a dining room table. My previous roommate is the proud owner of my last one and Jay's was bought at WallyWorld like 8 years ago. Shopping time! One of the really nice things about living in our area of Houston is all of the antiques shops. One particularly famous one in the area is called the Guild Shop which has been in business since 1962. Its a massive non-profit and their stock is changing constantly. You can check out their website here.
Realistically, about 90% of the stuff in there is junk, crap, gross, smelly, or all of the above. I did find one extremely amazing thing that I have regretted not buying when I had the chance. This guy.
"How did we get this table home since we both have midgy two door cars?" you ask (so many questions!)? Well my car is a convertible (hooray!) so we just put the top down and popped the table in the back seat. Yes, this looked insane, but it got the job done, and we were only cruising on neighborhood streets so we don't think we endangered too many lives. A few big trucks offered to help us (a fleeting moment of genuine Texan friendliness) but we carried on and made it in one piece.
Obviously the yellowy pine is spectacularly hideous paired with our darker wood floors. What to do?
We did everything but the sanding inside because the heat and humidity would have never allowed our paint to dry. We had a ton of boxes left from our recent move, so we used those to protect the floor. First step was just to clean off the old finish leaving a nice fresh surface to work with. This was done with a little cheapie handheld sander and duh, sandpaper. We then decided to stain the top first because our paint would easily cover any slip ups or drips. Two coats of stain in Jay began to panic because it wasn't looking as dark as he was thinking. We persevered, added poly for shine and protections, and after two coats of regular ol' indoor eggshell paint on the legs our table was totally transformed. We only needed about half of a quart of paint, so we had a bit left over for other projects.
- Don't sand in a circular motion, our table top has some subtle swirls in it that could have been avoided if we (Jay) had followed the grain. Never even occurred to us (him).
- Let it dry for 3 more days after you think its dry. I promise you, it's not dry yet. If you live in a humid climate, make that 5 days.
- Dog noses can and will become covered in paint. The same goes for dog paws. Butters is pretty good, but he's curious so we had to keep him on a long leash in the living room so he was out of range of any chemicals.
- Don't forget to poly smoothly under the lip of the table top. Drips will bother you even if you don't see them.
- Don't be afraid of color! We love this bold turquoise, but how cool would chartreuse be? Orange? Go for it! You can always repaint it if you change your mind.