It may have taken me a year, but I have finally finished the dining table and chairs! I never had a place for the table before moving in to our house so it just sat in my mom’s basement. Then it sat in the basement in our house for a few months. Next thing I know it’s Christmas time and I was supposed to host a dinner for my in-laws….and I had no where for them to sit. Yes, that means all of our meals usually happen around our coffee table in the living room in front of the television. That’s a toughie to confess.
I bought a buffet on Craigslist that I wanted to paint and put in our old apartment (here’s the post about it). When I called the man to “claim” the buffet (which was a steal at $100) he said that I was the first caller and I could come pick it up, but with one stipulation: I had to take an old dining table, 6 chairs, and 2 side tables as well. Ummmm…ok. The side tables were nothing great, but I loved the dining table and chairs.
It took a lot longer than I thought, but I got to buy an electric sander (which I LOVE) and got many hours of practice with it. Then I conquered my fear of staining (I had just never done it…the unknown often=fear) and was so happy at how easy it is!
Here’s the breakdown of how to re-finish a stained dining table with wood veneer top:
- Invest in a great electric sander. We purchased a Dewalt from Home Depot on sale for $75.
- Sand the table top using a 50-150 grit sand paper until all the old stain is gone. This may take a while. Keep the sander moving so everything comes out even. And for goodness sake, WEAR A MASK! I did not and my lungs were very angry better. As a nurse, I knew better but ignored my common sense. Nurse fail.
- Once all your surfaces are stain free using the 50-150 grit sand paper, go over all of the surfaces with a 220 grit sand paper. This is very important preparation for re-staining the table.
- Wipe down the table with a damp cloth to remove all the dust.
- Now time to re-apply new stain. I used Min Wax Jacobean 2750. It is a dark stain with brown tones.
- You can use a brush or a rag to apply the stain. I chose to brush it on and wipe off with a clean, lint free, rag after letting it sit for 8 minutes.
- Initially the stain bubbled a little bit, but i kept brushing it over and over again until the surface was smooth.
- One coat may do the trick, but I ended up doing two to get the perfect color for what I wanted.
6. Let the stain dry completely and then apply a good polyurethane top coat to protect the surface from food and drink spills.
As far as covering the chairs:
Well, I didn’t take any pictures because my mom did them for me while I was staining. I was in a major time crunch to finish the table!
- The gray Ikat fabric I bought on etsy from The Needle Shop
- We had to test the material to see if any of the original green fabric on the chairs would show through. It didn’t! TIME SAVER! WOOHOO!
Here’s the list to cover the seats:
- Unscrew all the seats from the chairs (there are usually 4 screws. one in each corner).
- Use paper, fabric, etc. to make a pattern to cut out the fabric. Make sure you cut your fabric a couple inches extra on each side so you have plenty of fabric to staple.
- Cut out the fabric using your pattern making sure that the pattern on your fabric is centered on the seat the way you like it.
- Staple, Staple, Staple. A good staple gun is essential, especially with thicker fabrics. It helps to have a helper with this–one person to pull and hold the fabric, another to staple. It’s not necessary, but it’s certainly helpful.
- The sides are the easiest to staple, but when it comes to the corners it’s a little tricky. My best advice: don’t be afraid of a lot of staples. Keep puling it smooth and stapling. Do this as many times as needed (most of my corners have 3-4 staples each). It may look a little messy underneath, but who’s going to see that?