Tag Archives: woodworking

Furniture facelift – how to refinish a thrift store table

The other day as I was making my thrift store rounds I saw an old table sitting outside of Bishop’s Attic. It had lots of stains on it as though someone was raised in a non-coaster family (oh, the shame!)

Furniture Facelift | How to refinish a thrift store table from alaskaknitnat.com

It was only $5 so what was there to lose by buying it?

Furniture Facelift | How to refinish a thrift store table from alaskaknitnat.com

I could tell it was a solid construction made with nice wood. Maybe teak, cherry and walnut in there? I’m not sure. But when I asked my husband if he’d help me refinish it I was surprised to find how easy it was. All we did was refinish the top of the table as the legs were still in good shape. We now have a gorgeous wooden table and all we really paid for was the wood finish.

Furniture Facelift | How to refinish a thrift store table from alaskaknitnat.com

Here’s what you’ll need:

Directions:

  1. Remove the top from the legs. Using 80 grade sandpaper sand down the tabletop with the orbital sander. Use circular motions and sand the top evenly all over. Sand the sides of the tabletop too, if you’re able to.
  2. Repeat this step with the next finest grade of sandpaper until you’ve reached 220.Furniture Facelift | How to refinish a thrift store table from alaskaknitnat.com
  3. Hand sand any bits or corners you weren’t able to get with the orbital sander. I just eyeballed it.
  4. Use a piece of tack cloth to remove all sawdust from the tabletop.Furniture Facelift | How to refinish a thrift store table from alaskaknitnat.com
  5. Pour a big glug of wood finish onto the tabletop and spread out evenly with a shop paper towel. Get all over and around the sides. Get it underneath the edge of the table. No need to finish the whole bottom part, but get some around the underneath edge. It should instantly look amazing.Furniture Facelift | How to refinish a thrift store table from alaskaknitnat.com
  6. Make sure the finish is evenly distributed and not applied so heavily that it drips or gloops.
  7. After 3 minutes use a dry paper towel to wipe the table with the grain to remove any excess oil. If you go against the grain it might look streaky.
  8. Wait four hours and repeat steps 5-7.
  9. You could stop here or apply another coat if you’d like. I only did two coats.
  10. Screw the top back onto the legs and presto! New table!

Furniture Facelift | How to refinish a thrift store table from alaskaknitnat.com

Furniture Facelift | How to refinish a thrift store table from alaskaknitnat.com

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Mini Anchorage Living — a child’s backyard dream house

All summer my husband has been the quintessential handyman — ladder leaning against the house, body splayed across the roof, a hammer hanging from his Carhartts, screws sticking out of his mouth. Only this house is 10 square feet and lives in our back yard.

Tiny Anchorage Living: a backyard dream house

Last year my husband, Stephen, became my father’s apprentice and took up woodworking with unbridled gusto. We are slowly replacing our particle-board furniture with hardwood heirlooms. He has thoroughly impressed every one of our family and friends. I’ve even made him his own hashtag (#hubbycraft, if you’re interested in seeing some of his projects on Instagram).

My parents recently replaced their deck and Stephen diligently ran every discarded board through a planer. Twenty-five-year-old faded, mossy cedar planks turned out to be healthy, sturdy wood perfect for reuse.

In May, Stephen started working on the plans for our son Jack’s playhouse. He used the repurposed deck planks for the frame and the miniature wrap-around porch. He spent every non-working and sleeping moment perfecting the playhouse from the screened vents under the roof to the retractable rope ladder leading up to the loft.

Tiny Anchorage Living: a backyard dream house

At the end of July we were finally ready for the playhousewarming party. All of Jack’s buddies gathered for food, treasure hunts, pool splashing and a chance to break in the new house.

Stephen estimates he spent about $500 on the house — a worthwhile investment for years of yard fun.

Thanks to the interior design expertise of Fernanda Conrad. She was an immense help in staging the playhouse. Check out some of her regular-sized designs here.

Tiny Anchorage Living: a backyard dream house
The toy grill was a $60 Craigslist score. The little lantern is solar powered and flickers in the night. The cheerful doormat was just $12 at Fred Meyer.

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