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My $5 Showroom Table

Years ago, my husband and I went to an auction in Leroy, IL. The kids were little at the time and they were getting tired of being there all day, so I took them home. My husband stayed at the auction until the very end. When he got home, he said "you'll never guess what I bought?" He was right, I didn't guess. But he had bought a round wooden table for $5. Cool, huh? Yeah, I thought so too and my intent was always to refinish it and make it beautiful again. I even bought a set of 4 chairs to go with it at a garage sale. But, you know, life got in the way and the $5 table just sat in our basement for years.

Wooden chairs I bought to go with the table.

When I started to plan out my showroom, I knew I wanted a round table to do my consultations from. The $5 auction table would be perfect! So, I proceeded to bring it back to life. Sitting in our basement (which unfortunately had been flooded at one point) was rough on this old table. Some of the veneer had started to peel away from the top, but I proceeded to glue it back in place (if it was salvageable). Here's a picture of the gluing process I went through. As for the veneer that couldn't be saved, I had to peel it off and fill it in with wood filler.

Table that needed top veneer glued back on.
Table being repaired and veneer glued back in place.

Since the veneer had come off in places, I knew that I couldn't re-stain the piece. I would need to paint it and I decided to paint it a gray color. I used chalk paint. Why? Because it's easy to use, it dries fast and it looks great on furniture! I ordered my chalk paint through Amazon. Here is an affiliate link to the paint I used:

I chose a pretty country gray color. Once all of the repairs were done on the table top and all the surfaces were sanded (it took a lot of sanding), then I could prime the piece. Why prime it? Well, since I was painting it a lighter color, sometimes the wood color can 'bleed' through a piece if you don't prime it. Trust me on this one...been there, done that!

Once primed, I proceeded to paint the country gray color on. At first. I loved it, but the more I looked at it, the more I thought it was too gray and dull. Pictured below are the chunky style legs of the table. They just looked blah...right!?

Chunky table legs painted in country gray

So, what to do now? Well, I still liked the gray color, but I wanted it to have more of an antique look. So, I pulled out my minwax and started to wax the piece. Here is an affiliate link to the wax I used:

I applied the wax with a round stiff brush made specifically for applying wax. Here's the brushes I used: No need to buy anything fancy. Any wax brush will do. I applied it in circular motions to give it an even look.

I had to apply two coats of the wax to get it to look right. I even applied more wax in certain areas to give it more of an inconsistent look. That was the ticket! This was what I had pictured in my head. I loved it!!

Picture of wax being applied to the table

I finished the piece off with several coats of a water-based polyurethane. Since it was going to be used as a table and would have a lot of wear and tear on the top surface, I wanted to make sure it was appropriately protected. Here is an affiliate link to the polyurethane I used:

picture of the can of Varathan Polyurethane

Make sure you use a good polyurethane. Don't go cheap on this step! And especially for tables, make sure you apply multiple coats.

I am so happy with the final result! It took me a long time to get here, but I choose to believe that that old table was just hanging out in our basement until the perfect opportunity for it to shine came along. I love it - imperfections and all!

Finished table top - closeup view

It's the perfect size too!

Finished table in my showroom

Now, to get started on those chairs...

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