For those of you who have been following this project from the start back almost a year ago – I am very happy to announce that this project is DONE DONE and DONE. The Mister and I are happy to say we have an actual dining room table. Now if only we had our own chairs. These are borrowed from the Mister’s old roommates. Thanks, guys!
With the impending arrival of the Mister’s family, it was really important to me that we all had a table to sit around. Something that we were both incredibly proud of. That and the arrival of my parents the following weekend spurred on the activity of finally getting around to finishing this thing.
Unhappy with the top I’d built for it given my lack of knowledge and available tools, I ventured out to pick up a miter saw, a new drill, an orbital sander, and pocket hole jig, and various other legitimate tools which nearly broke the bank. No more half-assing things. It was time to commit to a project. Using Ana White’s plan for a farmhouse table, I built a new frame support and tabletop that would attach for the already existing black pipe base. The result? Perfection. I left the last post off the other day at having sanded the whole thing down and wiping it clean, so let me share with you the rest of this project – staining and sealing.
Staining was easy. We did this part in the basement so we could be a little more carefree and messy in our methods. Using foam brushes and a can of MinWax stain in Early American (our favorite color), we liberally applied stain to the whole top and sides. We waited about 5 minutes and then wiped off all the excess. Wanting it to be a little darker, we went for a second coat and let this sit for another 10 minutes before wiping it down. Then we left it alone for 24 hours to fully dry.
Normally at this stage you’d then go ahead and apply Poly, but his family was arriving that evening and we didn’t have the time. We hauled the frame and top upstairs and attached it to the base. Cue my happy dance. Seriously… it looks awesome. Check out how it looked right before dinner piled with bottles of wine and freshly baked French baguettes. Fun fact: Did you know baguette isn’t actually the word the French use for this style of bread? True story. You should have seen the look on the Mister’s grandmother’s face (who incidentally was visiting us from France) when he was trying to tell her we’d made her baguettes. She laughed and reminded us that “baguette” to the French implies a “stick” or “club” while making a bat-swinging motion.
I’d like to say we took care of the coats of Poly before the next weekend when my own family was visiting, but in true Nicole Litton fashion, I managed to lose the can of Poly somewhere in my car for a week… in 108 degree weather. There’s a good chance that ruins it, but since I’ve never used it before, I couldn’t tell if there was a difference in consistency so used it anyway. Hey – that was a $10 can!
So we finally got around to sealing the tabletop on Sunday. I used MinWax Polyurethane in Clear Satin. First, clean the surface. Since we’d been eating on it already, there were a bunch of crumbs all over it so I had to thoroughly vacuum the entire surface. Then I took a damp cloth and wiped the whole thing down. Once it dried, I used a foam brush and applied an even coat of the Poly to the entire surface and sides of the tabletop and frame in the direction of the grain. A little trick about applying Poly: If you put the can in the fridge a couple of hours before applying, it increases the amount of work time you have. For a newb, this was important since I wasn’t really sure what I was doing.
4 hours later, I went over the whole thing with my orbital sander using 220-grit sandpaper. I wiped down the surface again and applied a second coat. Same process for a third coat. I liked the look after 3 coats, so called it a day. Then it just had to cure for 24 hours. The curing process is really important so don’t get overly excited and try to use the table before this time is up. Here’s how it looks now – much more polished.
Phew! Feels good to finally cross that project off our ever-growing list in this house.
For more information on how this table came about, check out the following posts:
- Beautiful Disaster – Includes the inspiration behind the project and progress of the first attempt
- Wood Plank and Black Pipe Dining Table – Includes the first reveal as well as plans for the black pipe base
- Eating on a Headboard - Includes the first part of this tabletop re-do and plans for the tabletop as adapted from Ana White