Tiny-Shiny Table Makeover

Crazy-Fun Table In the Foyer

Crazy-Fun Table In the Foyer

Plank Table

Plank Table

Two Saturdays ago, I purchased this simplistic wee side table for less than three bucks.  It’s really small, about two and a half feet square.  Now, I realize that this is not a chippendale or hepplewhite piece; it is not the most elaborate or finest craftsmanship available.  But let’s face it– for that amount, I couldn’t buy the wood and paint necessary to make this baby, either.  Annnnd it’s the kind of thing that I’m always going to be able to find a use for… right now it will go into the foyer, and then later it might hold shoes in the closet, and then someday it can be perfect for seedlings in the greenhouse.  Couldn’t pass it up.

Other than the white being dingy and dirty, it just plain needed some color.  I had planned to paint it, and pondered for a couple of days on what shade to do it in, changing my mind every two or three hours.  Never a good sign.  I tried to think in terms of where it would be most predominantly used, and tried to base my decisions around that conclusion.

Now, some of you may remember that I bought a really sweet vintage industrial table last Summer, and it has occupied the foyer up until this point.  The problem with that is several things:  I was given a turquoise rug for the foyer for Christmas, and that table is the same color, and with that sweet little vintage kid’s chair parked down there– also blue– it is toooooo muuuuuch bluuuuuue.  And I DO wanna use the rug in the foyer.  Secondly, I *adore* that little turquoise typing table, so I could find a zillion other homes and uses for it in this house, and it seems almost squandered just holding up a plant in the corner by the door.  I mean, it’s  got cool pop-up leaves and everything, and in that space, there is no need or even room for any of that.  That landing area is just dinky, and it’s more table than I really needed at this point.  I decided to switch it out with this tiny little one, just to see, and I love the new one’s slim profile and two levels of storage, it’s going to be the perfect replacement.  It changes the way the foyer feels a little bit, it’s less crowded.

Some Of My Gift Wrap Options On the Turquoise Rug In Question

Some Of My Gift Wrap Options On the Turquoise Rug In Question

Problem is, hanging out in the foyer, it was duuuuuull.  So lackluster.  It’s very diminutive and white that against the light tile floor it just visually melts away.  Not so good.  I didn’t even feel sure that painting it a bright color like tangerine would fix that.  And then it occurred to me, there is no furniture that  seems to be screaming out *more* for decoupage than something like this piece, which has no detail or style of its own.  I had a chance to give it a little bit of presence, and decided to take it.

Usually scrapbook paper and vintage children’s book pages are my go-to for decoupage projects, but in this case I wanted a print that was super-colorful and graphic, and in pieces big enough that I could do complete areas of the table without piecing paper together.  I decided to go with gift wrap.  Now, I am not jesting when I say I looked at wrapping paper at four different stores over the course of two days… everything I was finding just seemed so wrong.  I wanted something really, really bright and dynamic.  It was also important to me that the paper had all or most of the key colors of our house– orange, greens, aqua, and red.  All of the wraps I was finding were either overly-feminine, not the right colors, or holiday-centric.  I was starting to feel a little dejected.

Do you ever do that thing where when you finally get your answer, it was so obvious that you wondered how you didn’t see it all along, and you feel justalittlebit like an idiot?  Well, me neither.  It definitely didn’t happen this time.  I *wanted* to check all of those stores and pretend like I was going to spend money when I had perfectly great paper at home all along….  You know it.  Part of my master plan, it was, and– I don’t want to talk about it anymore.

Pay No Attention To the Dining Room Decor In Progress

Pay No Attention To the Dining Room Decor In Progress

So, there I was, going into the garage to put cat food in the cat food dispenser, and I look over, and there’s the huge cardboard box of my Christmas wraps.  I’m sure that it hadn’t occurred to me to look there because I still think in some really boring part of my mind that Christmas papers must only have Christmas motifs on them… which is not really true anymore.  And I go over there and dig around a bit, and I came up with more than a couple of cute possibilities.  A couple of these have really great retro dingbat-like graphics, but I ruled them out because of their background colors.  I didn’t want to use the blue because of the aforementioned turquoise issue, and I didn’t want to use the hot pink, because I live with two dudes and they don’t like hot pink.  (They realize *I* like pink, and me using a little bit is okay, but I need to chose those pink battles, ifyougetwhatimsayin’.)

Anyway.  This leads me to go through my birthday/ shower wrapping paper stash as well.  After thoroughly exhausting every gift wrap option in the house, I rounded my other supplies and made a final decision on which papers I was going to use for this project.  I cleaned up the table with a paper towel and some cleaning spray mix (blue dawn, vinegar, water), and set about trimming out some paper.  I cut out ALL of the pieces for this project ahead of time and had it ready before I ever poured the mod podge from its bottle-jar-jug-dealie-thing.

Notice That My Free Hand Is Making The "Claw Of Great Stickiness."

Notice That My Free Hand Is Making The “Claw Of Great Stickiness.”

Assembly after all of that prep work went smoothly and quickly.  If you’ve never decoupaged onto furniture before, it isn’t the easiest project to tackle straight off the crafty-bat, but it is something that is easily learned with a little application and practice.  It’s one of my favorite craft forms, I so enjoy it.  I used the regular (shiny) Mod Podge.

I did the bigger areas with the giftwrap I’d trimmed out, and then on the skinnier edge areas, I used washi tape– the green is Scotch brand, the orange dots is Up&Up–  because I am lazy.  Too lazy to cut neat little 1/2-inch wide strips of paper yards and yards long, that’s for dang sure.  (What did I DO in the days before washi tape?!  I cannot live without it.)  And after I carefully placed it, I painted straight over it with more mod podge, just like the wrapping paper pieces.  (That’s what’s happening in the pic to the left there, the grey blob at the bottom is the foamie brush in my right hand– Thanks to husband for the pic snapping.)

If you’d like to see how I did this, I have done a quickie little mod podge tutorial with my method that you can view here:
www.lovenestdesign.com/creativity-compulsion/

 

Crazy-Candy Striped Table

Crazy-Candy Striped Table

I have essentially used that exact same process as linked to above, but the only tweak is that with giftwrap you need to be sure and dip your paper more quickly into and out of the water.  I’d actually hold it by each end, and dip the strip from end to end, moving constantly.  And then I would hold the wet strip over the dish of water and I would gently (gently!) run my fingers down it to get some of the excess water off before I placed it on my wet mod podged area.  This process may sound really complicated, but it isn’t.  You get a rhythm to it, and it all goes pretty smoothly if you’ve done all of your cutting beforehand.  My process has allowed me to completely cover this little table with absolutely no bubbles.  (Because that would make me crazy.)  It’s very very smooth and the end result is, well…. awesome.

My Whole Foyer / Stair Landing--  Now With Turquoise Rug and Funky Table!

My Whole Foyer / Stair Landing– Now With Turquoise Rug and Funky Table!

You Can See I Have No Problems With Color Or Pattern!

You Can See I Have No Problems With Color Or Pattern!

I ended up with a wee table that cost me in the ballpark of two dollars and fifty cents (Yes!  $2.50!), and the impact is certainly more than that.  I already had all of the decoupage supplies on hand already, sooo….  cheap!  My new foyer table is wacky and weird and wonderful.  And you know what?  Against My “Wales Green” wall; next to my cozy turquoise shaggy area rug; beside the little 60’s school chair with the chippy paint; under my cluster of all kinds of wall art– it is kinda PERFECT!  I am so happy with it all!  I know that when I walk through that door I certainly feel at home.

Happy Springtime, ya’ll!  I hope you find some fun inspiration here and brighten up something in your life!

 


 


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