Good morning from the freeeeezing Midwest! It’s rainy and super windy here this morning, and it felt every bit of 46 degrees outside when I let Teddy out. Happy to be enjoying a rare quiet moment on the couch with a blanket while Hadley takes nap numero uno.
This week, after eating a month’s worth of meals on the living room couch, we finally filled up our dining space with a kitchen table.
We sold our eight-top marble kitchen table a couple months ago in Arizona, and our main reasons for selling it included its bulky size, difficulty to move around the country (the top always required a custom-built crate), it’s much too tall for children, and overall our style has changed. It sure was great for entertaining though. We definitely agree that we got our money’s worth out of this table! Lots of good times were had sitting around it.
I’d had my eye on a farmhouse table since June when I went to visit one of my best friends Mary Elizabeth who’d just received her custom-built table. It looked SO beautiful in her dining room, and I knew that a farmhouse style would be our next table.
My brother-in-law is very handy, and after telling him about my dreams of a farmhouse table but my woes of the store-bought price, he agreed to build one for us with Jamie’s help! Shweet.
I picked these plans from AnaWhite.com because they were less complicated than many but still thorough with a shopping list, cut list, and step-by-step directions. I also love that she features other tables built by her readers using the same plans (labeled under her user brag posts).
With his shopping list in hand, Jamie went to Home Depot and True Value last Friday and got all of the supplies. The only table legs Home Depot sold were some very thin legs, so we opted to go with two 4x4x8 FIR pieces (cut to 29″ each) to use as legs. I absolutely loved these Osbourne legs, but we didn’t have the time to order them or room in our budget for them. No regrets here!
2 – 1×2 @ 8 feet long
7 – 2×6 @ 72″ long
2 1/2″ pocket hole screws
2″ finish nails
wood biscuits to connect top boards (not in Ana’s directions but my BIL knew this would increase the life and sturdiness of the table)
Josh had most of the power tools, but he and Jamie did end up renting a couple tools for the day. They worked on and off all day Saturday and then again for a few hours on Sunday.
We didn’t have time Sunday to stain and paint the table, so once the construction was done we laid down a cloth tarp and a plastic tarp in the kitchen so that I could do the staining and painting later in the week.
Besides a couple of boards snapping and needing to be replaced, the boys ran into no problems or frustrations while building the table. The biggest frustration they experienced throughout the day had nothing to do with the table but everything to do with Army football giving up their lead, missing way too many field goals, and losing in overtime. This is how I found them at one point when I came out to check on them – listening to the game and wallowing in sorrow as usual.
With the windows open, I stained the table Monday morning during Had’s nap. I used painting rags to apply three coats on Minwax Dark Walnut, and I could not be happier with how the stain turned out.
After I finished with the stain I applied three coats of Minwix Clear Gloss Fast-Drying Polyurethane.
After I finished the top, I used Home Depot’s chalk paint (Americana Décor Crème in white) and gave the legs two coats.
Then things got hairy.
I’d read that a wax paste was the best follow-up product to use on chalk paint, so I picked up a can of Mixwax Paste Finishing Wax.
In hindsight I’m sure I wasn’t applying it right, but I hated how it was leaving an orange tint and was thick and goopy.
Here’s where I took a major turn for the worst. I wiped off the wax and applied a coat of the Polyurethane.
News flash to the clueless like me. 😉 You can’t just “wipe off” wax, and wax rejects anything you put on top of it. When I woke up Tuesday morning, but legs were even more sticky than they were the night before. I immediately took a light sanding block to try to get the stickiness off of it, and within five minutes my table leg looked like this.
Of course I called my sister flipping out that I’d just ruined our brand new table, and she confirmed that yes you have a big mess! I was so mad at myself.
Since I figured things couldn’t get worse for that one poor leg, I continued to sand by hand until all of the poly was off and I had a smooth leg. The paint looked like it had been through war though. I had a little bit of chalk paint left, so I painted another coat right back on.
After letting it dry, I realized that I loved how it looked. The imperfections actually gave the table a rustic feel and semi-matched the rest of the distressing that I’d done to the rest of the legs the night before. (When Jennifer and Josh came over later that night, I asked them to pick out which leg I’d messed up, and neither of them could tell. Victory.)
I still had three more legs that were a sticky disaster though. After a quick google search, I grabbed some baby powder from under Hadley’s sink and poured nearly a whole bottle of it all of the legs. I then took a hand towel and smoothed out the powder. Within seconds my legs went from a sticky polyurethane disaster to smooth as a baby’s butt and just perfect. Crisis averted and table complete!
We sold our marble top table for $700, so we set that money aside as our budget for this table. The materials, rentals, paint, and stain all cost right at $200, leaving us with a $500 budget for chairs. I found this bench at World Market yesterday for $273 with tax, and somehow my mother-in-law was able to squeeze it into the back of the Jeep! I gave it a couple coats of Scotch Guard last night, so hopefully it’s good to go.
Next I’ll be on the lookout for four simple matching chairs to complete the table. At $60ish bucks a chair, I have my work cut out for me, but I’m really in no rush for now.
As for the weekend, we don’t have too much planned. Quiet weekends are always welcomed around here though! 🙂
Hope you have a fun one yourself, and as usual thanks for reading. 🙂
Hi! I’m Erica, and I absolutely adore sharing my life on this website with you! I come here almost daily to blab about all of the things related to being a regular wife and mother is today’s ever-evolving society. I share about our new home, what’s on our kitchen table, what we’re hanging in our closets, where we’re traveling to next, my crazy 5 a.m. work outs, how I make time for girlfriends, our faith, and much more. We always have a lot of balls in the air and somewhat thrive on the chaos. I believe in the power of story-telling as a form of inspiration and entertainment, so I’m here to do both! I was born and raised in north Alabama and recently re-planted roots here again after my husband transitioned out of the Army (he is now in the Reserve and it’s going so well!) I’m a super proud mom to two little girls (ages 4 and 2) who seem to be the stars of the show around here (for good reason – they’re pretty great!) I’m so glad you found me and are here reading! I hope we can get to know each other here on the blog as well as Facebook and/or Instagram. xoxo