Fix it up Friday - end table

I need to begin by telling you all that I will never again buy a piece of furniture that requires me to use a saw to fix it up.

I am horrible with a saw.  I suppose if I had bought a $200.00 electric saw instead of my $2.00 garage sale saw I might change my mind.  What would be the point though of spending $10.00 on an end table and have to spend $200 on the saw to fix it up?  Back to my dilemma of only having a $2.00 garage sale saw to work with.  No more woodworking for me.  I'll stick to spray paint! 

Can you see the potential?  I love natural wood but I know some other furniture painter people would look at this and envision it covered in cream paint with an antique glaze to highlight the paneling!  Maybe when I get over my natural wood phase I'll do that with this piece.  Here's the kicker though, someone took off the top of this piece (could this be why I got it for 10 bucks!)  It was raw and ugly, very rough with nail holes and everything.  So now what should I do with the top? 

I thought about tiling it but that would cost a lot and as we know I don't even own a good saw let alone a tile cutter! I thought about doing a hammered metal but reminded myself that I have never welded in my life.  OK back to about doing it in American Clay!  YES, that is what I will do BUT I will need to put an edge on the top because American Clay will not stand up to people or things running into the corners.  It would just chip off.

I went to Home Depot and picked up some plastic edge molding (4.50 a piece x 2) and spray painted it blackish brown (I alternated the oil rubbed bronze with aged copper, that was after trying out the hammered brown that I didn't like)   Each of those paints were 8.00 a piece - ya, adds up! 

Next I attempted to use my cheap mitre saw to cut the edges.  It was a disaster.  I am a guesser and I do not like measuring, so the result was 4 pieces of 1.) maybe the right size lengths and 2.) edges that were hacked through with a 2.00 tool.  I also realized that to to the cuts right I would need to not just cut the wood at an angle - the actual CUT would need to be angled and my fancy garage sale saw didn't do that!  I hate woodworking!  But I am good at positive thinking so I still thought my table had a chance.  I put the edges together and used wood glue (on my plastic) to hold the edges together.  Well, I sadly realized you can't use wood glue on plastic.  After waiting forever for it to dry (it was hard, I don't have a lot of patience) I picked it up and it fell apart.  OK, what about super glue? That holds everything - right?  Well that along with tape did do the trick.

 (I did make a trip out to the home store to get some glue that will work with everything for the future)
OK so now I have edges that do NOT match up (lots of gaping space) so I need a wood filler to patch in the areas.  This putty was fairly cheap (2.50) at the store and my thought was I could use it for fixing my other projects.

Everything seemed to be working out.  I filled in all the cracks with the putty and re-spray painted it a warmer color and used the correct glue (picture above) to attach the edge on the top.  I did the very professional thing and applied weight to hold it in place.  Doesn't that look professional? (-:
Now for the part I know I can handle.  (So far this project has been way out of my league).  I taped off the edge and troweled on some leftover clay (phew, something was free!) and when it was dry I applied 2 coats of penetrating sealer to the top. 

There you have it!   It cost me about $40 extra to fix it up.  So total for the table was 50.00.  I'm not too happy about that.  I liked the $10.00 it cost in the beginning.  Oh well.  I do like the end result and it's fun to have something to post, the MANY trials and all! 

Look at the LOVELY lamp! (see post below for that score). Fits right in.  I had the shade stored in my garage.

That is our dog Duke.  He is very proper.....crosses his legs every time he sits down, plus aren't all good decor pictures shown with a cool looking dog?  So now he is giving back to me a little for all the years I have cleaned up his poop and fed him.....still not sure if having him as a cool prop is worth it though??


  1. Ok that was HILARIOUS. Especially the part at the end with the dog. You had me worried, especially when you used wood glue on plastic, and I wasn't sure you'd be able to pull it off. But like all good super heroes, you pulled it out in the end. That table turned out gorgeous! The clay looks so cool and I would have NEVER thought to do that.

    So the good news is that I'm super impressed and love your outcome, the bad news is you have not inspired me to try and cut a new top for a table.... you're braver than me!

  2. I love the table and the clay added so much warmth to it. What kind of clay did you use? This looks like it could be a handy thing to have on hand.

  3. I love the cute!
    (I like the table too!)

  4. Thanks for the great post! The finished table is just gorgeous. Clay is a great idea!

    I feel like I have been in your shoes about 10 times before! I think that you did a good job with the saw, its really hard to just NOT use a saw. For another few bucks, you can buy a mitre box that will cut perfect angles with your $2 saw.

    What kind of clay did you use for the top?

  5. Hi Adrienne,

    I used American Clay ( I just made sure to put on a few coats of their penetrating sealer. So far it's really held up, even with the many kid cups spills!

  6. I love this post, it made me sooo happy because my 'projects' usually go like this with lots of ups and downs and mistakes etc. the table turned out so beautiful! Thanks for your awesome posts, I'll definitely be back for your wit and great ideas! :)

  7. Great table! And a great dog...if your labradoodle is anything like mine...BEST. DOG. EVER!! :o}


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