Saturday, July 23, 2011

Early birthday gift

My amazing husband has been working so hard to build me my dream farmhouse table as an early birthday gift. We started by getting the table below off of Cra*gslist for 25 dollars--at first we were just going to sand it down and stain it a darker color, but we decided to use the legs off of this table and build what we really wanted. We got ideas from this and this blog.

We also found these old desks--a local college was selling them for dirt cheap, so we snagged 8 of them and envisioned using them as our dining room chairs.
Robbie got to work, deciding what size to make the table--we decided to make it a foot longer than the original table top, so he had to rebuild part of the apron that supports the top.

...laying it out...lots of thinking and researching and borrowing tools before we even really got started, since neither of us has done any woodworking before.
The legs and apron were ready--we were hoping they'd support the heavy table top!

Now, out to the garage to glue and screw it together. We borrowed these long clamps from a friend, and Robbie got creative on how to clamp the long side.

Once it had been clamped for quite a while and we were sure it'd hold together, Robbie started sanding it down--for many hours! My hubby is a perfectionist about some things...trying to get it perfectly smooth on top--placing plates and cups on top to make sure they wouldn't wobble, ... We brought it back inside for the finish work--way too hot to stain and polyurethane in the garage!

And after probably 5 hours of sanding, I made him take a hatchet to it!! He was very hesitant, but I wanted some light distressing--we used several random things we found around the house, and I love how it turned out!
We gave it a coat of a wood conditioner, since it was raw wood--I guess it's supposed to make the stain go on smoother.Here's the first coat of an American Walnut stain--we did 2 coats of stain and decided that was dark enough.

In the meantime, we removed the desks off of the chairs, cut off the supporting arms, sanded them down, picked out some fun paint colors, and started painting.
...and distressing...
After multiple coats of polyurethane, it's finished! Isn't it BEAUTIFUL?!? I love it--can't wait to use it. We're leaving on a week-long mission trip in the morning, so we're going to let it cure while we're away. Thanks, hubby, for my amazing gift and all the hard work you put into it--I'm hoping it stays with our family for many, many years!


  1. I love it!!! Good job, you guys!

  2. Wow! It all turned out beautiful. Such a great idea and so practical, too. Happy birthday early!

  3. This is an amazing end result! I'm so glad you blogged about it! I love the table top, but even more the colorful chairs! Ways to go!

  4. The chairs are soooo fun! What a wonderful birthday gift, one you certainly won't forget! Now, will the kids fight over the chair colors? That might be an issue at my house...

  5. This is beautiful! We are looking for a dining room table to refinish as well! You have completely inspired me! Good work Robbie!

  6. Wowza. Someone unearthed some mad woodworking skills during this project.

  7. Amazing! Love it, Gail! Robbie, I'm so impressed with your handiwork!

  8. It turned out amazing!!! Great job Robbie!

  9. I am late in seeing this. It is AWESOME!! You had such great vision for this and did a great job carrying it out! I love this.

  10. I absolutely love this! The table and chairs are great and all of the hard work that went into the project makes it even better. Nice work Robbie!!!

  11. Ok, I know you posted this a month ago, but I'm just now catching up on blogs... What a cute project! I love the multi-colored chairs especially!