PART 1: Wow…..A $12.00 Dining Room Table?!

Would you believe it if I told you this dining room table only cost me $12.00? (Okay, well, $11.91 if you want to get technical…..). Seriously, I kid you not. I bought it a couple months ago at my favorite thrift store:

I decided recently that I MUST start doing something with all the stuff I’m lugging home from the thrift store. Otherwise, what people tease me about will end up being true: that I will be a hoarder and will need an intervention! LOL

How I found the table is that I was perusing my favorite thrift store (big surprise, right? lol), and I noticed it sitting there, hiding under some clothing and games. The awesome price was covered up. When I saw that it was marked $14.99–huh??!!!–my eyes about bugged out of my head. No way……

I shaked it….shimmied it….looking for WHY it was only $14.99. I mean, tables like this in the thrift store go for at LEAST $40 on any given day…usually about $50. So this was truly a steal. All the parts seemed to be working. And this baby was SOLID WOOD, not that veneer crap.


I didn’t want to leave her (lol) to run and get an employee to write me up a SOLD ticket, but how else was I going to get her?? I knew that leaving this table exposed, someone would want to come snatch it up. Sure enough, in the 2 minutes I was gone, when I got back, some woman was shaking and shimming it as well. I did what any crazy person would do–I threw some ‘bos (as in ELBOWS) and exclaimed, “Sorry, this is SOLD!”

With the leaf extension, this table is the perfect size for my dining room! We’re a family of 5, and you’d laugh if you saw our current eating arrangements.

And I love the clean lines of this table, as well. No frills. That’s me.

So the other night, I pulled out what supplies I thought I would need.
Liquid stripper….check.
Sanding discs….check.
Minwax Pre-Stain….check.
Minwax PolyShades….check.
My old trusty sander….check.
 Some cleaning agent (OdoBan)….check.
And in all this mess of a garage….I was ready to get started.

My intention was to clean the table….wipe it down with OdoBan, remove any thrift store gunk on it….But I was pretty impatient. And I wanted to just see what a straight sanding would do to the finish. So I jumped in and got started.

Wouldn’t you know it came off relatively easy? I used a tough 60-grit course sandpaper. And the beauty of that wood underneath—whhhoooo weeeeee– very beautiful. Made me question why I would even have thrown paint on this baby (which is what I was considering doing initially).

I was pretty pleased with the removal of the top layer, so I decided to fore-go the chemicals (and since I hate nasty chemicals, all the better!)

I had to go through several of these course sanding discs, because I kept getting thick pieces of gunk on it, from the layer that was being removed.
Stupid me didn’t even put on a mask until I was halfway through! Bad idea…..But who cares if I look like I’m contagious–breathing this stuff in is not recommended!
And yeah, my garage is a HOT MESS…..I’ve got many projects…..insufficient lighting…..a dirty floor….a yucky plastic sheet with spray paint all over it……and kid’s toys to step over.
But anyhow….I made a lot of progress.
Now the top is DONE! I switched from course 60-grit paper to medium, and then to fine 220-grit sandpaper.
Only the top and sides are done at this point because I can only work in the late hours after my kids go to bed, and really, who wants to be sanding after 11PM?? I  worry that I will disturb my 3-month old, who sleeps in our room right above the garage.
And then I have had a technical failure where the sticky pad part of my sander fell off, so I had to reattach it overnight with Gorilla Glue. I think I’m ready for a new sander, anyhow……Something that will suck up more of the dust as I sand. Because at this point, everything in the garage is covered in DUST!

So this weekend I will sand the legs… the pre-staining treatment, stain, and then varnish.


About the Author ()

Hey there, I'm Serena, a 38-year-old working mom of 3 young boys who can't get enough DIY! If you actually made it to the bottom of this post to read this, it means you're really enjoy my blog. That means SO much. If I can inspire just one person through my passion and energy for DIY, then I'm fulfilling my life's purpose. Thanks for joining me, and I hope you'll subscribe so we can keep in touch! ~Serena

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  1. Colossal DIY Fail.......Or Rustic Chic Dining Room Table Makeover? - | | February 13, 2013
  1. peppi says:

    serena, can just see you shouting from the front of the store, SOLD!!!!! or even using the loudspeaker…. next time, take the sale price off somehow. that way someone else will have to find a salesperson, find out price, quickly decide they wanted it, etc…..and you have already been to the cash register and have receipt in hand. makes me smile, and that’s good! peppi

  2. Serena says:

    Girl, that’s how you gotta roll when you find a good deal! 🙂 Thanks for commenting!!!! 🙂

  3. Laughing at throwing elbows at the store. I really enjoyed reading!

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