The next piece of furniture I tackled was this entry table that I found on the side of the road. It was in very good condition except for a water stain on the bottom piece. When we moved into our cottage, I was determined to lighten every piece of dark furniture we brought from the old apartment. I did forget to take a before picture, so this is the best stock picture I could find.
I used the same Copen Blue color from Sherwin Williams for this piece as I did for the Bookcase Makeover – there was enough paint left in my sample can and I knew this piece was going to a different room of the house anyway. This sweet minty blue color gives a nice subtle pop to my white walls and softens the feel of my small space.
Sand and Prime
I was worried at first that this table couldn’t be refinished because it had a laminate finish rather than solid wood. But when I scoured Pinterest for “How to Paint Laminate Furniture,” I learned that it could be done! I hand sanded this piece with medium grit sand paper everywhere it was going to be painted.
Using a white water-based primer, I hand brushed in the hard to reach places and then took a small roller to the top for a smoother finish. You may want to do two coats of primer on darker pieces of furniture if the finish paint is going to be a lighter color.
This color went on very light, but the coverage was great after two coats. I left to dry for at least 2-3 hours. I didn’t worry so much about painting the inside drawers because I knew I would eventually distress the corners and opening up the drawers would show a lovely contrast of brown. You can always lay a pretty contact paper down if you don’t want it so dark.
This was the fun part, and my first time distressing. You can do this a couple of different ways, either soaking a little dark wood stain in a towel and wiping the edges and corners, or sanding those edges and crevices. I used my sandpaper because the wood underneath was dark anyway so exposing that under the paint seemed to give it a more authentically distressed look. Just take the same sandpaper and rub over the dried paint until you see the dark come through. Wipe the dust clean with a damp cloth before applying the clear coat.
I used the Minwax Polycyclic Protective Finish as a final clear coat. (Important to use water-based materials together, do not mix with oil-based) One or two coats is all you need, could do more if the table top will be used a lot. There are different options for finishes including polyurethane and finishing wax (usually used over chalk paint). Here are some more tips on the difference between polycrylic and polyurethane.
I chose two beautiful drawer pulls from our local hardware store. I went with the dark brown to compliment the distressing and dark inside drawers. Silver or gold didn’t seem quite right, and I also considered the other décor in the room and the color of my floors.
All you need to do is unscrew the existing hardware (or drill a hole if there are none), and insert the new set from inside the drawer. Drawer pulls will usually come with their own screw unless you find a salvaged one, which can also be pretty fun!
I’m so glad I refinished this piece. It adds so much character to my kitchen and now serves as the base for my developing Family Command Center. You can put baskets underneath for more storage. For now I have this vintage suitcase that holds my reusable grocery bags. So many possibilities!
Share about some furniture pieces that you have brought to life!