I'm super excited to share with all of you my latest project because it's been something I have been planning since last fall. As much as I loved the large farmhouse table that we scored for a super good deal at an Amish auction last summer, I have plans for it in another area of our house (you can see that table and the benches here). In the next few weeks we're going to be starting our deck and I'm eager for that to happen because it's going to be an extension of living space (for a month or so out of the year since we do live in Minnesota - har har har). Our new deck space will have an upper and lower deck and my plan right now is to use the old rectangular farmhouse table and benches on the lower part of the deck. With our daughter's high school graduation party coming up, having the farmhouse table and benches will be great for extra seating. And just a month after that I turn 40 so we might just need extra seating for another party. :)
These past few months I have been keeping watch on Craigslist and Facebook for a used kitchen table and chairs. I knew I wanted a pedestal table and I knew I wanted 6 chairs. I occasionally found sets that I was interested in purchasing and ended up disappointed because they were either already sold, or the seller never responded to my email. After dealing with that for awhile, my husband suggested buying the table and chairs separate since I had planned on painting them anyways. Duh. Why didn't I think of that?!
So I ended up purchasing this pedestal table for only $75 and it was just what I was looking for. I'm sure this table looks very familiar to many of you since this shade of stain was all the rage in the 90's. Remember when everyone decorated with country blue and little wooden people and houses that were hand painted from the craft fairs?
The table top required the most amount of prep work since I wanted to stain the top. The rest of the table top and the pedestal were going to be painted so there was very little prep work involved. That table top was a bit of pain though. First we used a stain stripper and then an orbital sander. My friend Maggie and I took turns using the orbital sander and when our arms got tired, my husband took over and finished it all up.
Now before you send me hate mail about painting these chairs, please understand that they did in fact need a bit of work and look much better in the picture than they did in person. Also, this just isn't my style. When I found these chairs on Craigslist, I had crossed my fingers that they were not already sold. Within an hour or so we were on our way to pick up 5 press back chairs. I know what you're thinking, only 5? Yes, the seller only had 5. Since I love the look of painted press back chairs, and the price was just oh-so-right ($120 for all 5 chairs), I decided on using the 5th chair in the guest room and purchasing 2 additional chairs for when we have guests. I don't feel the need to be matchy matchy (anymore) so I went with black metal cafe chairs which by the way were under $50 each shipped!
One of the reasons I was drawn to these chairs was the absence of chair back spindles. The thought of painting around those....yuck. The only thing we had to do was remove the hip rests and lightly sand the seats. My husband did also strengthen some of the legs with wood glue and tightened the screws that were loose.
If you follow me on Instagram or Facebook, you may remember me posting a couple of the pictures I took while I was in the process of painting. I decided against using chalk paint for this project and instead used a high quality latex paint & primer in one from Menards. I went with a bone color but honestly I can't tell the difference between white and bone. On the chair seats and the table top we used Minwax Interior Wood Stain in Ebony.
After the chair seats were dry, I hand sanded the seats with a fine grit sand paper to remove the sheen because I wanted the chair seats to look worn. In the photo above, the two chair on the left are sanded, the chair on the right is not.
I am so, so, so happy with how it all turned out!
I did distress the chairs with a fine grit sandpaper in random areas to give them an aged look but before we sealed the chairs with Minwax Satin Polycrylic Protective Finishes, I brought them inside to the space so I could see in the daylight if any areas needed more paint or more distressing.
Normally I don't like too much distressing on painted furniture, but on these chairs I did want to highlight the press back design by distressing a little extra in that area.
I wanted the table top to be consistently one color throughout so I did not do any distressing. I also wanted the table top to be really dark so we did put several coats of stain on. Once the stain was dry, I lightly sanded the top to remove the sheen from the stain (it was just too glossy).
I did notice that I have a few "oops" spots on the seats by the chair legs. I have a stain marker that I could use, otherwise I think I will use a Q-tip and apply the stain to cover the white spots. It's not too noticeable so I'm not worried about it. :)
If this is a look you would like to duplicate on furniture that could use some updating, here is a list of supplies that we used:
Old t-shirts cut up in pieces used for staining
A big thanks to my handsome handy husband and my friend Maggie for helping me with this project! Even my 17 year old daughter wanted to help with this project (until a friend called and they left to go shopping....)! This was Maggie's first experience with refinishing and painting furniture and I hope I didn't scare her off from tackling a project of her own. :)