Have you ever wondered how to paint your dining room table? If you have then you’re absolutely in the right place and even if you haven’t, I still think you should read on and I’ll tell you why I think you might want to consider painting yours!
We bought our dining room table second hand from a friend who was selling it back in 2016 when we paid £40 for it – a total bargain considering what a well-built table it is. I love the design of the table and when we bought it, I really loved its shabby chic style with the dark wood top and the off white distressed effect on the legs and the chairs.
This photo doesn’t do it justice at all but it really complimented the room and our style when we first bought it. Over the years though, we’ve moved away from the shabby chic style that we used to love and now prefer a fresher look with white being our favourite colour to decorate now.
Aside from the fact that we prefer white now, the table itself was definitely looking worse for wear and was more shabby than shabby chic so for ages now we’ve had the table covered with a variety of tablecloths (Asda do great seasonal wipe clean tablecloths for about £6 so I’ve been able to change it up quite cheaply) and just ignored the fact that the off white our chairs and table were painted in just looked dirty when up against our white walls, drawers and radiator cover – look at the chair I’m sitting on in this photo…
So, that’s why for the longest time, I’ve been wanting to replace our dining room table and chairs. The problem was, to buy a new table of similar quality that also extends to seat more people when we need it as ours does isn’t cheap at all. Even the seats are great quality and I love the fact that I can update them easily as the seat pads are removable.
That left me with one option – to paint our dining room table and chairs and hope like mad that it worked and I didn’t ruin everything and need to buy a new set anyway.
The cost involved if I did mess up meant that I just kept putting it off until last weekend when I decided that enough was enough and that the table makeover was happening!
I literally set off for B&Q withing five minutes of deciding to do it and was back half an hour later with a tin of chalk paint, a tin of clear varnish and a small roller ready to start.
How to paint your dining room table!
I’ll tell you what I did and what I used to paint our table in a sec but first of all, here’s the before picture that I shared over on Instagram just before I started…
The paint I used was a chalk-based paint which I read would be ideal because it’s a furniture paint that adheres to surfaces without having to sand them first. Chalk paint dries to a matte finish and when finished with a hard-wearing varnish as I used is really durable.
I love the Annie Sloan chalk paints and I’ve worked with these paints before when I upcycled a side table at a class I took locally but they’re a more expensive option to the chalk paints I found in B&Q so I went with the cheaper option. The Rust-Oleum chalk paint that I used was £14 for the pot which did two coats on my tabletop and base. I’ll tell you more about why we went back and bought the spray paint version (£10 a can) later…
It says on the tin that you don’t need to sand or prime but I did give it a bit of a sand just because the dark stain that was used on the table last was really dark and I didn’t want it to show through. It probably wouldn’t have based on what it says on the tin but I just wanted to be sure. 😉
I used a gloss roller to paint the tabletop and sides and a brush to paint the base and couldn’t believe how great it looked after just one coat…
I left it to dry for an hour or so and then gave it another coat and then after another hour it got a coat of clear Ronseal Diamond Hard varnish which I read would give it a great strong finish. We left the varnish to dry for the rest of the day and give it a final coat just before we went to bed so it could dry completely overnight.
At some point, while I was varnishing the table, I realised just how bad the chairs were going to look when pushed under it. I’d been planning on doing the chairs in a couple of weeks once I’d had time to choose some nice upholstery fabric to recover the seat pads at the same time as painting them but they really would have looked bad with everything else in the room looking so white.
So back to B&Q I went to buy another tin of paint but then clever Mr Frugal noticed the spray paint version of the chalk paint we were using on the table so we bought two cans of that instead thinking we could just pop the chairs in the back garden and spray them quicker than we could paint them.
It was so easy to do and took less than twenty minutes to spray all four chairs and it was so satisfying seeing the off-white distressed look being covered up with the much brighter white that we were using.
In the absence of any actual upholstery fabric, I cut up a cheap fluffy blanket that we had in our blanket box and used that to recover the seat pads with that using my trusty staple gun. I do this quite regularly with my seat pads so I don’t mind that the blanket isn’t going to be particularly hard-wearing
We got up on Sunday morning to the most amazing white table that looks even better than I thought it was going to look and four chairs that look equally amazing with their fluffy great seat pads.
I love it!
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