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What should I do with this????

A day late (and probably a dollar short too) but since Kristen is still taking links for her Works for Me Wednesday projects I thought I'd jump in with my question. This week is Backwards Wednesday where we are supposed to ask Blogland for help. . .so here is mine:What should I do with this table???? The history is such: I believe it was bought for my aunt by my grandparents, in used condition, 30-some years ago. It was then passed on to my parents. It was stained in black (and that's how I saw one just like it in an antique show YEARS ago). My dad spent a year tirelessly refinishing the entire thing. . .table, 5 chairs, and buffet when I was in jr. high. It was beautiful. My parents later divorced and my mom had it in her home. Eventually she remarried and my husband and I enthusiastically inherited it. I love it because it has a history. I love it because it's solid. But it has seen better days. I DON'T KNOW WHAT TO DO WITH IT!!! My sister thinks I should chuck it and start over but I just don't want to. To have it professionally refinished would cost as much as new furniture and I'm thisclose to shopping around again (we considered that about 5 years ago). It's been through kids gouging it with forks. Numerous art projects. Heat damage. You name it.
Last time my MIL was here she mentioned "oh, I see that you've started on your table". . ."huh?". . ."it looks like you've started working on it". . ."ummmm, no, it's just where the FINISH IS WORN OFF". That's how bad it is. But I still love it. And these nifty leaves (that keep breaking and my wonderful husband keeps fixing).

And the chairs are SOLID.
(one of these)

(four of these)

We really couldn't afford this quality.
Years ago I saw something about stenciling in stain??? Anyone ever heard/seen/done anything like that? I really think at this point in my life, I'm only willing to do something on the surface of the table. Yes, I'd love to redo it all, but don't feel I'm experienced enough to try anything that might ruin it. The chairs are pretty bad. . .I think eventually slipcovers will be in order. But for now, I need to do SOMETHING. And I'm cautious. Thoughts????
Thanks for "listening" and contributing any ideas you may have!!!


  1. Well, we had a family biz of building and finishing can ALWAYS paint over any finish (may need to rough up if the finish is glossy - just use a fine piece of sandpaper over it - then use a tact cloth to wipe it down good - then paint over it - black? or white/cream? whatever would go with your decor. - it shouldn't be that hard.
    If you'd like it to look a little distressed, after the paint drys, use fine sandpaper (000) to lightly sand the edges - again, use the tact cloth to wipe it down - and then apply 1-2 coats of a good heavy poly -you can get a matte top coat if you don't want it real shiny

    Hope this helps!!

  2. I think the table would be gorgeous if stained a nice dark cherry, but painting would be nice too. Otherwise, it looks like a good cleaning and a coat of varnish would probably make the table match the leaves.

  3. I like the idea of stenciling the top. If you're just wanting to do the top of the table, I'd sand it down a bit then paint it. You can find decorative stencils at places like Michael's and Hobby Lobby. Then you could just add slipcovers to the chairs. Sounds like a really nice dining set.

  4. What a beautiful table! Wow, I'm speechless, and that rarely happens;) It may be a little ambitious but I would probably try to sand it down and apply a nice stain. Have you checked out Miss Mustard Seed's blog? She has some beautiful furniture makeovers. Good Luck ~Lisa


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