Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Not Grandma's Sewing Table Anymore

This is the offensive (but charming with loads of potential) table in question.  I must say that yes this table was old and in need of love when it came in to my possession 8 (ouch - yes I said 8) years ago.  I had the brilliant, albeit delusional, idea that I was going to sew table cloths for the tables at my Wedding Reception.  Really?  Yes Really!  My sweet Stepmother was kind enough to loan me her Grandmothers Sewing Table.  I was in turn awesome enough to a) not sew a single table cloth for my reception b) not return the sewing machine for 8 long years and c) not do a single thing to renovate it until now!  Aren't you tempted to let me borrow something?  I bet you are.  Not only did I not return or renovate this poor heirloom table, I left it under my carport and it got rain damaged!  I am coming clean on my problem with returning and procrastination because it is time for me to out myself. 
Check out this lovely picture of the rain damaged top!
There is a Happy Ending to this sad story though.  I have renovated the table now and I love it.  Here I will give you a step-by-step process of how I did it!  I still have a little tweaking to do with some of the inner wood supports of the table and also with getting the sewing machine itself up and running, but for now it is holding court in a corner of my dining room. 
First thing that had to take place was a thorough cleaning (as it had been under my carport for years).  I then proceeded to sand it with an electric detail sander (because this is what I had on hand and it also helped get in to tight corners).  I used low grit sandpaper since this table is clearly very old and worn and there was really no veneer to get off.  As you can see from the picture above the top was a mess, so I then used a scraper with a blade to remove all the excess wood and chipped pieces from the top.  The top did not look great once this was done, so I decided to add a thin layer of veneer to the top of the table to restore its look to clean and old-new.  I just went to Home Depot and bought a roll of White Birch real wood veneer for a measly $14!  I had never done this before but it was so easy!  You simply unroll the product and layout the wood grain in the proper direction and heat up your iron!
I did just as I said and followed the directions on the box.  I heated up my iron and placed it on top of the veneer and ironed like it was a shirt.  The heat from the iron activates the glue - it takes several passes and some patience but it works.  I then simply used an exacto knife and cut the edges around my table.  I had to lay down the veneer in two separate strips because of the size roll I purchased.  I then gave the top a light sanding and cleaning and was ready for paint!  I chose a burnt reddish color and painted the entire table inside and out (the top of course flips up and out as it is a sewing table)!  I only had to paint two coats.
  I followed that up with a coat of dark walnut stain that I had leftover from flipping a house.  I applied it generously with a sponge brush and simply wiped it off with a paper towel.  It took no time at all.  I also changed out the knobs because the old ones were just boring!
Voila!  A Beautiful Old-New Sewing Table.... wish I didn't have to give it back to my Stepmother :) 

Want to see my next project?  Here it is.... no your eyes are not deceiving you!  The table really is that gross.  I have let my kids go nuts on my table and it looks it.  The grooves in the table top don't help either - great food catcher don't you think?  And yes I am that mom that sometimes lets her kids eat while watching TV - audible gasp here!  Anyhoo, I will get ta workin' and post when I am done....

See you soon.....

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