The Coffee Table that nearly Killed Me

This is one of those purchases that I regretted as soon as I walked out of the thrift store.

Perhaps it was the price of $29.  Not that it is a high price, but higher than I would normally pay for a piece that needed to be repaired to sell.  Or perhaps I somehow knew the transformation would take many different looks and months to complete.

The before picture shown above wasn’t the true before picture.  I didn’t take one, because I had no intention of totally transforming the table.  The top had a few scratches in the finish.  After reading some tutorials online I thought I could fix the scratches easily.  Not so.  I decided I would carefully sand the top so I wouldn’t have to pull out the stripper.

Bad choice.  I sanded too deep in a few spots.  And because I was doing this in the bright sunlight, I didn’t even notice until it was too late.  Plan B was to paint the table.  Since my clock face coffee table sold right away, I decided to do something similar.  This time I decided to make a compass face coffee table.

This is going to be soooo cool right.  WRONG!  I was out of chalk paint, so I decided to make my own.  Rather that carefully measuring out the ingredients, I just threw them together till I got the consistency I wanted then set to work.

When I removed the decals I really didn’t love the look.  I loved the look of the decal, but not the finished product.  None-the-less, I cleaned up my lines a bit and waxed it.  That is when I discovered something went wrong with the chalk paint.  The wax would NOT buff out.  I waited days, even weeks but the wax just never seemed to be anything other than gummy.

So I finally had to pull out the stripper and get rid of the paint.

For my last and final attempt I painted with milk paint, sanded and distressed it.

After this much effort, I wasn’t about to spend the extra time putting a clock-face or compass on it, even though I’m pretty certain it would have been a good use of my time because I would get a higher price for it.

The truly sad fact is, I think this is a Lane Coffee Table.  Had I just pulled out the stripper to begin with, it wouldn’t have taken long to strip, stain and re-seal it.  And I would have been able to put an even bigger price tag on it.

But all these month’s later, I am just thrilled to move it out of my house!

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