Well, we did it! One of the things we wanted to accomplish when we first moved into our house was to build a coffee table from an old door.
We moved in last August, so….that’s pretty much first thing, right? 😉
Our house, which was built in ’47, had a lot of renovation work done before we moved into it. Good bones, for sure. But we had dreams of changing even more things for aesthetic appeal. The living room has a really nice, open floor plan and lots of natural light from its windows.
Here’s what she looked like when we moved in:
Then, here, after our initial decorating:
Looking good, but something’s missing. Like…a place to rest a mug of tea when you’re sitting on the couch, you say? Yeah, us too. Largely because of this reason, we found we weren’t using this room very often.
I don’t remember where the initial idea came from, but Jonathan and I knew we wanted to build this thing from an old door. We visited the Habitat ReStore many a time, looking for the perfect door (i.e. cheap and with character). One time, we thought we’d found it, but when Jonathan went back with his brother’s truck to get it, it was sold. We were sad, but determined to be patient.
Then, whammo! We found a beaut of a door for only $12! It was a little warped, but we felt like that could be leveled out as a table (we’re not exactly the carpentry experts, but it worked out).
We talked a lot about design, and found this inspiration from…you guessed it: Pinterest.
There were many things we wanted to do differently, but we especially liked the knob placement, the shelf along the bottom, and the sides also made from the door.
So, Jonathan and his brother, Michael, got to work! Michael graciously let us use some wood that he had gotten for free (hence, why we used black wood when we were just going to have to paint over it). First stage complete! But, alas, it was too tall 😦 Much too tall, considering how long of a table it was.
The guys cut it down another 4 inches or so, and it looked sooo much better! I was excited.
Now it was my turn to get to painting! We decided to go white with the table since our walls our dark in the living room. We wanted to pick up the baseboards, crown-molding, and frames above the couch.
First, I primed the whole thing (and by whole thing, I mean everything except for the door). Let me tell you, it was a pain to paint! I really should’ve painted the black wood before we put it together. There were so many nooks and crannies that were just about impossible to reach with a brush. And if priming all those awkward spots wasn’t enough, I painted it white (2 coats)!
When I was done painting it white, I tried a few “aging” techniques: sand paper and steel wool soaked in apple cider vinegar. I wasn’t having much luck with the table top (and maybe I was feeling a tad bit frustrated with the pace of progress) so I decided to do some “light” aging on the legs and base and call it quits.
Maybe it’s not noticeable in pictures, but there is some brown staining from the apple cider vinegar that didn’t wash off. A little frustrating, but the good news is that we were going for an imperfect look! After 3 or so coats of a polycrylic sealant, we were done!
I’m learning my lesson in patience with each project I complete hurriedly out of frustration and/or eagerness. One day, I’d like to go back and do some more “aging” to the door, but I’m learning to deny my perfectionistic side. It’s a fully functioning, completely original coffee table! And we made it! Yay!