Saturday, February 5, 2011

Refinishing the Dining Table – Part 1

She’s baaaaack.  Maybe.  :-)  I’ve been avoiding my blog lately because I just couldn’t decide what I wanted it to be or how much effort I wanted to put into it, so I had basically decided that I wasn’t going to blog anymore.  I’d even stopped READING other blogs, if you can believe that.  I couldn’t quite bring myself to just pull it down, though.  Then, yesterday, someone commented on one of my first posts about my kitchen (Thanks, Kelley!) and I was reminded how nice it feels when someone enjoys one of your projects and you can help them out in some way.

So, this morning, I read a few blogs and decided to give it another go.  I think I’ve had enough of a breather that I can do it on my own terms now.  I’ve had several projects going in the last two months, including fall-out from a roof leak, so I have a bunch of things to share.  We’ll take it slow and see what happens.


As I’ve alluded to in the past, I’m on a mission to get rid of the yellow in my house.  Because the floor and cabinets were all the same wood, my kitchen started out so very yellow.  My dining room was another area that was filled with yellow.  The dining set was also an awful yellow tone (I have no idea what we were thinking), which didn’t go so well with the Cowslip yellow walls that I had wanted so badly when we moved in 10 years ago. (You can see in this picture that I was already testing new paint colors for the wall.)


I knew I wanted to change the dining set, but I wasn’t sure if it was solid wood or some laminate.  I figured I could paint it, but it had this beautiful wood grain pattern on the top (which of course is covered in the picture above) that I didn’t want to lose.  I’d think about sanding and staining it, but  would run up against the fact that I thought there was no way I could sand it if it was laminate.   I can’t quite remember what set me off one Friday morning in early December – I think I had read some blog about someone sanding down some veneer, but it occurred to me that maybe the table was actually veneer, not laminate.

I ran down to the table and crawled around underneath to check, but couldn’t determine whether it was veneer or solid.  I was on a mission, though, so I ran out to the garage and grabbed my hand sander and went to work on the inside of one leg.  That went well, so I kept going – giggling to myself the whole time.

As I was sanding, I did learn that it was, indeed veneer – at least the lip on the side – and I did sand a bit too much in some spots, so you could faintly see the particle board underneath, but hey the particle board was smooth at least!

I sanded for four hours and by the time I was done, it was beautiful!  The grain stood out so impressively and you could really see the lovely pattern on the top.




This is what the table looked like by the time my husband came home (I believe I had sent him some cryptic texts that let him know I was up to something, so he’d at least be prepared for some upheaval).  I was SO excited.  This had gone so much better than I had feared and I couldn’t wait to pick the stain color.

I’ll stop here to savor the good times as this project was about to turn into the project from hell and break my heart over and over again…


  1. Kudos to you for going on with the blog and on your own terms. I always blog on my own terms, because I blog for myself and if other others want to read it, that's great, too! By the way.... if I din't like the things you do on your blog, I wouldn't have become a follower. Keep up the good work, mostly for yourself, but also so the rest of us can get inspiration.

  2. Keep on doing this for you, not for anyone else. I'm looking forward to seeing what you did to the table.

  3. Blogging is just FUN, don't let it become a chore and just do whatever you want! IT'S YOUR BLOG :) I came across it a few days ago and have had some nice mornings just browsing through it! Very excited to see your finished table, I just tried staining something for the first time and BOY it was not as easy as I thought it would be.

  4. Glad you're back. The blog world isn't the same when I don't have someone to talk to "in real life" about it!

  5. Ooh, a sequel! I think it looks fantastic unfinished. Maybe that's why the sander has been hidden from me. :)

    Glad to see you back... I've missed you! Sometimes taking a breather can give you a whole new perspective on things. As long as you're having fun doing it, that's the most important!

  6. Hey new follower here..
    it looks great and very beautiful

  7. We have our own choice in choosing the right dining table. For me I choose the one that made up of woods. Because in the long run and we found this boring we can play with color. And base on my own experience it is most durable and can last longer.

  8. Dining room furniture is the key ingredient in any household. That’s because, the dining table is where people gather to eat. The kind of furniture you use in your dining room can help make a meal with family, friends and guests feel all the more special.

  9. The factor that will determine your dining table size is the number of people who will be using the table regularly. For 4-6 people, a 4’ by 6’ table is sufficient.


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