End table makeover with milk paint and stain

How to update a thrift store find end table with milk paint and stain for a beautiful finish.

Remember last summer when I rearranged our living room?  That meant I needed another end table and I found this one for $15 at my favorite local thrift store!   When I shared it on Instagram stories several of you said you had the same one or a matching set from Ashley Furniture.  It really was in good shape except some wear and scratches on the top.  I had left it as is but it was finally time to give it a makeover. 

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It really was in good shape except some wear and scratches on the top.  I had left it as is for quite a while but I really wanted it to have some contrast from our dark floors and fix the top so it was finally time to give it a makeover. 

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Every piece of furniture I refinish I follow the same basic steps.  If I am going to restain the top, I sand it down to the bare wood.  I start with a rough grit of either 60 or 80 grit and then move up to a finer grit and finish with a 220 grit to make it super smooth. 

 

I stained the top with Varathane Classic Special Walnut and then did 1 coat of triple thick poly. 

For the base I painted it with Rust-Oleum milk paint in White  – it took 2 coats and once it was dry I distressed it just a little.  Then I did a coat of Rust-Oleum Chalked Matte Clear protective topcoat.

Are you ready to see it?  Here’s the before…

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And here’s the after!

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Again it really was in decent shape before but now the top is just gorgeous and has a nice thick layer of clear coat on it to protect it from scratches.  And now it has a nice contrast with our dark wood floors and doesn’t just get sort of lost. 

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And that top!  I love the way it was designed with the inlay of the wood.  Now with the stain being a little lighter you can really see the design. 

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I don’t always distress all my furniture pieces anymore but this one had such pretty lines that I decided to do just very light distressing.  Since our living room is a pretty high traffic area it would have probably seen a bit of distressing overtime anyways so this way I won’t be stressed if that happens. 

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Here’s a picture of all the products I used – I love all of these!  I go back and forth between Special Walnut or Dark Walnut depending on the project – for pine wood I will usually use Dark Walnut. And I really can’t decide if I like Rust-Oleum’s chalk paint or milk paint better?  This piece didn’t have as much wood grain but for a piece like this desk that I refinished with the milk paint I love how it lets some of the grain show through with still giving good coverage. 

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I’ll be sharing our spring living room very soon but here’s a quick shot of how it looks in our living room.  Always love finding an awesome wood furniture piece for cheap at a thrift store or yard sale and giving it a makeover – almost all of our furniture in our house was acquired this way and I love it!

 

If you loved this paint update, you’ll want to go check out these other updates done with paint! 

See More Update With Paint Projects
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Comments

  1. Love it.

  2. Vicki Clem says:

    Such a cute table and so much better now with your dark floors! I bought some milk paint a while back and have yet to use it. You’ve inspired me to try it on one of the thrifted pieces in my stash?

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