I probably shouldn’t admit how much fun I had setting this table for these photographs. While I like to keep our table at home set, I never go THIS elaborate! I mean, we run a furniture business out of our home and have 3 dogs. Nooottt a whole lot of room for nice setups like this one! But this one was too good not to share, so keep on reading to get the links for just about everything you see in these photos!
For those of you just here for links, scroll to the bottom of the post for a quick recap!
Most of the dishes you see in the photo are from Crate and Barrel. Dane and I registered for these items for our wedding and they’re still available!
Can you believe our 2nd anniversary is coming up?! Where has the time gone?! Do any of you follow the traditional anniversary gift guide? First year was paper, second year is cotton. I’m struggling real hard because all I can think of are socks. And honestly….dude has enough socks. Lol.
Maybe I could gift him new table linens like the ones we used for this table…ya know, a gift for the both of us! Haha!
The striped napkins I just picked up at Target. My favorite store! They are so classic and were so inexpensive! What I love about these fabric napkins most is that they’re washable. I would just be careful with red sauces and red wine. ..Thanks Captain Obvious, right?
The navy plates were a Christmas gift from my mom. She always buys me the cutest things for Christmas..she gets me. Although it doesn’t look like they’re still available on their website, here are a few good options that are pretty similar.
For any outdoor dinner, this caddy is a MUST! It’s great for holding the silverware extras (in case you drop one) and holds any extra napkins without having to worry about them blowing away.
When setting out on building this dining table for a client of ours, we would have never thought it would have been this challenging. We've built a number of smaller tables with very little to no issues at all. It's basically the same thing but bigger, right? WRONG!
Let me set the stage here for you: the table was 92" long x 45" wide, and made of (18) 2x6 kiln dried pine boards. This thing was heavy! -And a little too big for our teeny tiny basement. Our house was built in 1913, our basement is unfinished, and the basement ceilings are so low Dane can't even fully stand up in 90% of it (he's 5'10"). We actually had to take the basement door off of the hinges to get the base outside. It was definitely a logistical challenge.
The base of the table, Dane says, was a breeze to build. The hardest part was cutting a 4x4 with a 7" miter saw. The secret was a lot of glue and a lot of brad nails. Moving on to the table top is where it got interesting.
LESSON 1: MAKE SURE YOU HAVE ENOUGH WORK SPACE
Since the base was assembled and taking up every inch we had on the floor, we were extremely limited on what we could do with the top. Dane covered the top of the table base with shop tape to prevent any table top glue adhering to it, and then used the space to hold his table top boards flat while they set.
He attached 3 boards at a time using the biscuit joiner and glue, and then used just about every clamp we had to hold them together. Once all '3 board' sections were assembled, he took them outside, attached them, and held them together with pipe clamps. After curing for a full 24 hours, the pipe clamps were removed and the table needed to be carried back into the basement. Which brings us to...
LESSON 2: IF YOU TAKE SOMETHING OUT, MAKE SURE IT WILL COME BACK IN
Yeah...there was no way that was going to fit back down our basement steps. Out of desperation, we laid contractor paper over our existing dining table in our dining room and temporarily stored this newly constructed table top there.
Each day, we'd carry it outside, having to lift it over our kitchen counter-tops to get it around corners. This was by FAR the most difficult part for me. As Dane constantly likes to remind me, I'm a little vertically challenged. I'm just under 5'2" and have not a serious amount of upper body strength. So lifting this heavy table top proved to be a little difficult for me, but in my most humble opinion, I think I handled it like a boss. ;)
LESSON 3: PRICE IT BEFORE YOU BUY IT
Our next step was to fill all of the cracks and gaps. Dane had done some research on Epoxy and learned it would be the best option for us. So we headed to Home Depot for some Gorilla Epoxy to try it out. We loved the turn out and decided to head to Rockler to purchase a larger container. Well, it was a little more expensive than we wanted to spend. I jumped online and was able to find a West Marine location near by that sold the exact same product at a much more reasonable price. I would highly recommend buying your epoxy there. We purchased the charcoal powder to mix in for color at a local art supply store.
During this process, we learned that a little epoxy goes a long way. After sanding for what seemed like hours, we finally had a table top surface we were happy with. We would also recommend filling your gaps and cracks with epoxy before you run your boards through your plainer to save yourself some time. It's MUCH faster than a sander!
LESSON 4: CONDITION PINE BEFORE STAINING
This lesson we learned awhile back, but felt it was extremely important to mention here. Pine is notorious for splotching, so conditioning the wood before staining will prevent your wood from looking diseased. We were then onto staining! Woo hoo! We used two coats of a Dark Walnut stain and then sealed it with three coats of Varathane's Triple Thick Quick Drying Polyurethane is Semi-Gloss. It. Looked. Amazing!
*Bonus Lesson*: A brown paper bag is the perfect grit to finish a table top. It gives the smoothest finish with visually no scratches!
LESSON 5: PATIENCE IS A VIRTUE
This is probably the biggest lesson we learned here. There were more times than we'd like to admit where we wanted to throw in the towel. The table was too big to handle in our tiny house, some things didn't go as planned, it took WAY longer than we expected, etc. But in the end, it was SO worth it! I mean, look at what we made!
Can you believe it's almost April?! Time seems to be FLYING by!! I feel like just last week Dane and I were ringing in the new year with our friends and a glass of champagne, and this weekend we'll be celebrating Easter!
Here in St. Louis, we're getting a head start on the whole 'April showers bring May flowers' thing. It's been raining for four days now. Four! And while I am absolutely obsessed with my new rain boots, I'd really like to give a new pair of flats a try. I'm also obsessed with flats. I'm becoming quite obsessed with shoes...which is unfortunate considering the size of my tiny closet.
For those of you who are new to our blog, our little house on Dresden Avenue is 104 years old...maybe 105 now? We have a lot of original character still in our home and I'm so in love with it! I just wish it had room for all of my stuff! I guess it keeps me from becoming a true hoarder.
You should've seen my living room when we were photographing this last custom dresser project for our last client, Demi. We legit looked like furniture hoarders. I had both couches squished against our bay window and my rug rolled up and shoved into a corner just to get a few good shots. I should've taken a photo of the situation for documentation; #reallife.
Demi's dresser was originally a dull white color, but had a nice contrast with it's dark pulls. And that faux key hole is so cute! She had a photo of inspiration which showcased a green dresser with heavy distressing. It took on a very worn look and had 'old world' vibes.
If you've ever refurbished a piece of furniture yourself, you know that distressing isn't something you typically add anywhere. To look authentic, I like to distress the piece where it would naturally wear. The edges and corners are a good place to start. We want this to look real people!! I was going for a 'boxed in a shipping container, on a boat from Italy' kind of vibe. Please don't ask me where I come up with these stories. I honestly have no idea. I'm a wacko...let's just leave that there.
Anywho...the dresser project we're currently working on for another client has wooden details we're adding, and I think if I could do this green dresser again, I would've liked to add details to help add a feminine touch and to give myself more details to distress for Demi.
For this green dresser, we also added a bit of an antique wax for extra aging. I didn't want it to overwhelm the piece, so I used a dry brush technique to keep it light and airy. I am SO happy with how this piece turned out! My living room looked so rich with this beautiful pop of color off to the side!
While I love working with these old details, my heart lies with clean lines, fun geometric patterns and lots of texture! I have an old buffet that I'm hoping to mix styles with. It's about six feet in length and has nice curvy lines. I'm thinking of painting it a nice shade of blue and adding fun drawer liners to the inside. I'll keep you posted on that because I'll definitely want opinions! If you have any fun ideas you'd like to see on the dresser, let us know in the comments below!
Thanks for stopping by!
When you walk through the door of our 100+ year old house, you pretty much immediately walk into our dining room. For the first few years, we had a very large vintage secretary desk along the wall that we used to collect our mail, throw our keys on, and keep our junk. We all have one..... its that spot in your house that just seems to collect anything and everything.
This secretary desk was so big and so chunky, it took up so much space. And in our 1064 square foot home, every square foot is precious. So we relocated the desk and needed to find something to work in its place. We started combing through Pinterest, Houzz, and many other DIY websites to get ideas on what we might like. And then AH-HA! -"Let's build what we want!" We used some ideas we found online and modified them into an awesome console table that would go with the style of our home.
For this build, we went to our local big box home supply store and bought standard construction grade lumber. Before all builds, its important to remember to take your time and select your boards carefully. Look down the length of the boards, while on edge, and look for obvious bowing or twisting. Its an easy technique you can use to select the best lumber.
There are many ways to modify our plans to fit your space. Here is how we built ours:
(4) 2’’ x 2’’ x 8’ boards
(2) 2’’ x 3’’ x 8’ boards
(1) 2” x 6’’ x 8’ board
(3) 2’’ x 10’’ x 8’ boards
(4) 2x2s @ 48’’ for aprons
(4) 2x3s @ 28’’ for legs
(7) 2x3s @ 10’’ for leg braces and middle support
(1) 2x6 @ 63" for the top
(3) 2x10s @ 63" for the shelves and the top
Mitre Saw, Circular Saw, or Hand Saw
Pocket Hole Jig
2 1/2 " Pocket Hole Screws
2 1/2" Wood Screws
* For best results a right angle drill and clamps will come in handy, but are not necessary.
After the pocket holes have been successfully drilled, now is the ideal time to sand. Sanding after it is all assembled would be more difficult. The time on this could vary depending on the type of sanding you are doing. We used a hand sander at 80 grit, followed by 120 grit and it took about 45 minutes.
The hard work is over, and now its the easy part. Time to finish the project! At this point, your table is ready for paint or stain. We chose to stain the shelves with Special Walnut by Minwax and then used three coats of satin Polyurethane to protect it. For the base, we first primed with Kilz and then painted it in Ultra White by Valspar. We followed that up with a layer of furniture wax to keep the paint protected.
The last step is to take 2 1/2" screws and attach the shelves to the aprons by screwing them in from the bottom. This will hide your screws.
CONGRATULATIONS!!! YOUR DONE!!! Wasn't that a fantastic and rewarding project?! We had a blast making this little beauty for our home and hope you did as well. This is one of our favorite DIY furniture build projects. Tell us what you think of the project or tell us about your favorite DIY projects in the comments below.
Dane and I are spending most of the day inside today because it's colder than a polar bear's nip nips out there! We've been working on a few new projects, all using different brushes. So many brushes! Which lead me to this post. I want to share with you all of the different brush options you have when working on your own projects! Why haven't we done this already?!
Choosing the right brush for your project can be intimidating. There are so many choices! So we've put together a list of our favorite types of brushes to use, along with a few good uses for each type.
So there you have it! Now of course there are a TON of other options out there! So many that we have yet to try! Let us know your favorite brush to use and why you like it. We're always open to trying new products!
We’re Dane and Heather. A husband and wife team obsessed with making (and decorating) new things. Follow along with us for all things happening here at our little house on Dresden Avenue.