Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Chalk Paint Coffee Table Makeover

** UPDATE: I just wanted to say hello and thanks to all of you who are visiting from Pinterest! It appears this particular pin has gotten a lot of love. Since I finished this table makeover around 2 years ago, it's still holding up great. The table doesn't get a ton of heavy use, although I've since applied two extra coats of wax for good measure. And now back to your regularly scheduled blog reading! **

Seven months. That's how long it's been since my last blog post. Whoops! There's been much progress in this past year around these parts--mainly related to finishing our basement. But I wouldn't even know where to begin with those updates, so for now I'm just going to share this latest project that's totally blog-worthy (if I do say so myself).

I bought this coffee table for less than $10 at a garage sale when I was in college. It was solid and sturdy and --although kind of boring-- not an offensively ugly piece of furniture. I've always kind of liked the nicks and dents that gave it some character.

The table served me well through college and several moves. Now that we finally have a basement that's livable, it's been moved downstairs where it fits in the space better. The color palette in the basement includes a lot of warm gray tones, and I thought this would finally be the perfect excuse to give the table a long-overdue makeover.

After some back-and-forth trying to decide what type of look I wanted, I decided to go with a chalk paint makeover. I had worked with chalk paint on a handful of wood signs and other small projects, and really liked the effect.  Plus, it requires minimal prep work and for someone as impatient as I am, that's a big plus!

So I gave the table a quick hand sanding to scuff it up and dull the finish. That was the extent of my prep work. I knew I wanted a two-tone look, and I already had three of the four desired colors on hand:
Then I just ended up buying a dark grey at Michael's (ArtMinds brand Pewter).  

I started with the Rich Black on the table top, since this is the color I wanted to show through when I sanded down the second color.  Then I painted the legs with Parisian Grey (again, this is the color I wanted to show through when I sanded down the second color).

Oh, by the way, I had a couple small chalk paint brushes on hand but also bought this wide brush: FolkArt Home Decor Chalk Wide Brush, 34910It's very comfortable to hold and really speeds up the process when you're painting a larger surface like this! (You can thank me later for this recommendation ;)

Once the table top had dried, I painted on a layer of the Pewter color.  For the second layer on the legs, I used Sheepskin since I wanted more of a contrast with the Pewter top. I also wanted the legs to pop against our gray/brown carpet.

After impatiently letting those coats dry, I got my sandpaper back out and began distressing my little life away. On the rounded legs, I rubbed the paper cross-ways (not up and down) to expose the underneath color. It kind of created a neat cross-hatch pattern. On the table top, I concentrated on the corners and edges, as well as those aforementioned nicks and dents.  In some areas, I unintentionally ended up sanding down past the black to the original wood color, which was actually fine with me.  That's the beauty of a chalk paint project -- I think it's pretty hard to screw it up. And that's something we can all appreciate, amiright?

The final step was to apply the FolkArt Home Decor Wax (16-Ounce), 34863 Clear. I hadn't yet worked with wax (I just used a clear spray sealer on my previous, smaller chalk paint projects).  But I just followed the instructions and rubbed it on with a clean cloth.  After letting the wax dry overnight, I attempted to buff it but didn't really notice if that made a difference or not. 

Actually, that wasn't the final step. The final step was taking a moment to admire my newly transformed table in all its shabby chic glory. The colors, the two-tone effect, the distressing... it all came together even better than what I had imagined in my mind.  I think it also looks great with the rest of the colors in the basement.  

It's only been a week since I finished up the coffee table, so we haven't used it much yet while the wax cures. Time will tell how well the finish holds up, but I think you can re-apply the wax every few months if needed. My only regret is that I didn't get around to this makeover sooner! 

NOTE: Little House on the Corner is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com.


Unknown said...

i love your site. We took a box to the thrift shop today, and there was a coffee table & two end tables that they were throwing away. I made my husband put them in the truck, and your pin showed me what to do with them. Thank you/1

Brittany G said...

Now that it has been some time, how has the finish held up? I'm new to DIY refinishing furniture, but I've heard horrible things about how chalk paint holds up on high traffic surfaces like tables. I'd prefer to go the quick route (with chalk paint)

Amanda @ Little House on the Corner said...

Hi Brittany - Sorry for my delayed response! I wouldn't say this coffee table gets a lot of heavy use, but with that said, it's held up great. I've only re-applied the wax once so far. I think that's probably key to maintaining the durability of the finished surface!

Home Stars said...

That table is beautiful! you did an amazing job!
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Kelly said...

I love this look and I want to duplicate it in my living room with my 2 end tables. I cannot find the pewter that you used. I don't have a Michael's near me. Can you suggest another brand with a similar color?? Thanks, Kelly

Earthy Timber said...

This looks so good!! I'm a sucker for nice looking Bespoke Dining Table UK . I hope to get a table much like yours.

Unknown said...

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Roxy said...

I’m also painting our coffee table. I started with grey on the legs. The second coat is white and went on very streaky. Any tips on how to get a smooth second coat?

Barbara Nimmo said...

Your creativity and DIY skills are definitely on full display here. I just stumbled upon your blog post about the coffee table transformation with chalk paint, and I have to say, it's truly inspiring how you've breathed new life into that old piece of furniture!
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