Monday, January 30, 2012

A REAL Farmhouse Table

Turning Tables

My friend Jennifer grew up on a farm outside of Champaign, Illinois.  Her parents worked the farm and lived there full time until a few years ago when they moved to Kentucky.  The farm is now for sale and they are in the process of clearing out the years of stuff that has accumulated in the many barns on the properties.  Last summer we took a road trip out to check out potential treasures - because the whole idea of a barn full of cast-offs and farm tools makes my heart go pitter-patter (more like a resounding thumpity-thump).  All she really wanted was a treadmill from the house, but I had junk on my mind.

Silly me, I had visions of hickory wood barns and wagon wheels - what I found was mostly metal barns and modern combines!  There were some treasures though and after we got the treadmill loaded in the back of the Durango, I stuffed every inch of that sucker that wasn't needed for me to sit and reach the accelerator.  

The barn closest to the house had the most treasures - it was a little like an overstuffed garage.  It held most of the furniture cast-offs.  In it we found this old table that had been sitting in family kitchens and sun porches for several generations.  How it broke my heart to see it all crumbling and decrepit.  I insisted that it must come home with me so I could help bring it back into the family.  When we got ready to load it up there just wasn't enough room - so we took it apart and brought it back in pieces.  Thus, I have no real BEFORE picture.  But here are a few pics of the pieces we took during sanding.  I had her do the sanding because: I hate sanding, she needed to contribute to this process, and because it was likely lead paint and why not let your friend inhale it and not you!  I wasn't looking for perfection on this sanding - just enough to get many years of barn grime and the flaking lead paint off of it.

We then took any remaining parts that were intact apart.  This table was seriously rickety and needed some reconstruction to become usable. If you click on the picture you can see that we labeled each piece just in case I got lost when I was putting it back together.  Note the extension pieces under this table!  Back in the day - when there were still leaves available, this table extended to like 50 feet!  I ended up having to take these extenders out because I needed this space to connect he tabletop slats together.  The slats were pretty warped.  I had to work hard to get the table top even close to flat.

Check out the trashed out finish on this puppy!

It was finally ready for some products.  These are the ones I used:

I had never used a pre-stain before but this was one dried up piece of wood.  I used the pre-stain and stain before I put the table top back together and the wipe-on poly after everything was stained and rebuilt.

I have used the Old Masters Gel Stain on many many many projects.  I love it.  I cannot praise this product enough.  Someday I will do a whole song about Old Masters Gel Stain....

I painted the base and legs with two coats of Annie Sloan Chalk Paint - Arles.  This was my first ASCP project and I didn't do too much reading before I charged in on the waxing process.  At the time I didn't know that they recommend a coat of clear wax prior to using the dark wax.  I just charged right in with the dark wax and it did change the color quite a bit.  Luckily it was just the look I wanted - Arles is quite a bit brighter than we anticipated from the online color swatch.  I did a lot of pulling off and moving color around with the clear wax afterward.   I really love the way the finish turned out.   I used Briwax dark walnut and regular Minwax as my clear wax.  Sometime soon I will get to buy some of Annie's waxes and a good brush - but not yet.

Look at all that patina love.

She is really too pretty to be stuck in a walkway in my dining room for staging.  But that's just the way it worked out.  Soon I will master the art of staging my pieces......

Now she sits pretty - back home with her family now living in Kentucky, but with with memories of family dinners and relaxing evenings on the sun porch in Illinois.  It makes me smile to know I helped her come out of retirement.

Make something wonderful today!

I'm linking with this fun party for blogging newbies


Debbiedoos said...

awesome job! I love how it turned out. Welcome to blogging and welcome to my party. Have fun and get out there and mingle from the list.

karen@somewhatquirky said...

Thanks Debbie. Your blog has been very helpful to me. It can be overwhelming to sort through all the info out there.

chateau chic said...

All our hard work sure paid off. The table is beautiful, and I like keeping the wood top with the painted legs.
I'm your newest follower on GFC and Linky. Hope you'll come for a visit.
Mary Alice

karen@somewhatquirky said...

Thanks Miss Chateau! I'm one of your Linky Followers now as well. Love that herb print on your mantle!

Unknown said...

Fabulous! You did an amazing job with it. I've been thinking about Arles- it looks beautiful!

karen@somewhatquirky said...

Thanks Bettsi! I checked our your site - and following you now. Can't resist anyone named Bettsi - have loved that name since Meg Ryan played Betsy on As The World Turns! I'm including a link here for my other Arles project in case you want to check it out...

Cassie Bustamante said...

WOW it looks gorgeous! the top is so rich and dark- i love it!


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