If you are ready to replace your dining room furniture, this DIY dining table makeover may convince you to give your existing table a second chance. Wear and tear can wreak havoc on a wood table. Fortunately, a finish can be stripped, scratches can be sanded, and paint can provide a few more years of wear, until you can afford to buy new. Or until the kids grow up and you can buy what you really want (wink, wink).
This post contains affiliate links for your convenience. Click here if you would like to read the full disclosure.
Allow me to introduce to you, my sister’s worn out (but solid wood) table.
You can see the a hint of the damage on the back of the chairs.
After buying a house, my sis has been working on budget-friendly updates throughout the 20 year old, 2-story home. In the meantime, I’ve been having fun blogging about them. After painting the built-ins, it was time to tackle the table.
The magic of paint brought this furniture piece back to life! I’m not going to lie, this dining table makeover was a lot of work and not quite so magical for my sister. However, after seeing the results, it was clear that buying new was not necessary.
DIY Dining Table Makeover (How the magic happened)
- Paint Stripper (The best one out there, and it doesn’t burn your skin!)
- Brown Stain(table top and chair seats)
- Blue paint (chair backs and all the legs)
- Glaze (optional)
- Top Coat
- Fine grid Sand paper
- Foam brushes and rollers
Step 1: Strip the finish and Sand
Use paint stripper on the areas where you want to apply stain. For this project, this was the chair seats and table top. Stripping paint is a bit tedious and time consuming, but do-able. Make sure you follow the directions on the bottle.
Once the finish is gone, sand until smooth. Be sure to sand the frame and the legs as well, to smooth out all of the dings.
Although you could sand by hand, it would take a lot of elbow grease. Allow me to recommend my favorite sander. If you are on the look out for a good battery-operated sander, this one won’t dissapoint. It gets into corners and you don’t have to worry about a cord or a compressor. I’ve had mine for two years now and is still going strong. I use it for most of my projects.
Step 2: Apply stain
Remove the seats, if possible, then apply the stain using a foam brush or foam roller. This beautiful rich brown gel stain is water based, which means there’s no strong smell like you get with some of the oil based stains. It goes on smooth and you can wash it off your hands with soap and water. Two coats should do the job!
Notice we did not use primer on this. This brand of paint provides amazing coverage without it!
Step 3: Apply blue paint
The chair frames and table legs got two coats of this gorgeous blue. This is my favorite General Finishes color. I also used it to paint my old bedroom armoire. One of the things I love about this paint is how fast it dries, allowing you to paint multiple coats quickly. It also dries with no brush marks! There’s almost nothing you can do to mess up when you use this paint. Very beginner friendly.
Step 4: Apply glaze (optional)
To add a weathered look on the edges you may opt to apply glaze. As you apply it, follow the instructions on the can, and remember that a little goes a long way. Make sure the paint is completely dry before applying the glaze. It gives a bit of an antique look.
Step 5: Apply a few coats of top coat
This is the most critical step of the entire process. Do not skip this step. Apply at least 3 coats of high performance top coat.
Tips for getting the best results on your top coat
- Apply at least three coats (or more for added protection and sheen). My sister did 5 coats. I’m telling you, it’s worth it!
- Use a foam brush and brush it on fairly thick in only one direction.
- Wait for it to dry completely(2-3 hours), then lightly sand before applying the next coat.
It is a long, tedious process but you will love the result in the end!
Be sure and PIN for later!
Until then, shop my favorite paint!
Novice woodworker and serial Popcorn eater, Janice Thomas writes detailed tutorials that motivate others to “dare to try”. Originally from Puerto Rico, Janice is fluent in Spanish and dreams of owning a beach house on the island someday! Janice currently lives in Utah with her husband and children, where she works as a university professor.