DIY-Repurposing Furniture on the Cheap

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This side table, and another just like it, were purchased at our local Goodwill for $10 each. They are solid wood and in good shape, other than just looking dark and outdated. 
Using a small mouse sander ( I have a Black & Decker - runs about $40) , some paint stripper I happened to have in my garage, some old yardsticks I picked up at yard sales, one small pint of polyurethane (about $6.50) , I turned these blah tables into something quite fabulous, and right in line with my mid-century modern living room decor! 

I started to try to sand the tables down, but realized that they had quite a bit of old poly stuck on them, so I regrouped, used some paint stripper to get the bulk of the old poly and stain off and then sanded them down to bare wood.... The grain was just so beautiful! ( you could barely see the wood grain on the original table)

I then decided that because I live with boys who love to set cups on wood surfaces with no coasters ( everyone has this same problem, right? Ha!), I would add a few coats of polyurethane for some protection. I went with three very light coats of satin clear poly, making sure to lightly sand with very fine sand paper and wipe down between coats. oh, and I actually waited the suggested 24 hours between coats😬😬. Very unlike me because I'll be honest, patience is not my middle name, just sayin....
I think they turned out gorgeous, What do you think?? I couldn't stop there though,  I had to add a level of quirkiness to them, cuz that how I role. I asked hubby to help me by cutting some old vintage yardsticks I had been picking up at yard sales and local thrift shops......I lined them up like this.....

And I used a pencil to trace along the back of them while in place so my husband could easily cut them using his small jigsaw....I used wood glue to glue them down in place... 

Finished product ended up costing about $35 for 2 tables, oh and a ton of sweat and elbow grease! I live in Florida and it's hot in that messy garage. I loved this project though, because there weren't a ton of expensive tools and supplies needed... The sander and saw were very inexpensive ( I already had them on hand) but even your neighbors or friends would most likely have these basic tools and may let you borrow them, if you are nice.... And they like you......or if you have beer or lemonade to trade.... See where I'm going with that?!!

I love them! I had an old wooden tray that was bright green, so I painted it brown ( using a cheap can of spray paint) and used the yardsticks I had left over for a cute coffee table tray!!! Fun!

So don't be afraid to pick up out dated furniture for cheap, use some elbow grease and turn it into something fabulous!! 
Next DIY project is a china cabinet turned bar... Stay tuned. 


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