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Mission-style Table Make-over

the problem: hideous table between our 2 recliners
(seriuously...I think it was a $20 table that we paid $15 too much for...)

the solution: turn a plain assemble-it-yourself table into a personalized piece that ties into the "missiony" style of our living room.

step 1

Pick up a basic mission style table at Lowes

step 2

Get some really GOOD help!
My idea to make it "custom" was to route out the top so I could insert a ceramic tile into it.  It would be decorative, tie in to the style of the room and as this table often holds drink cups, it would be practical as well.

I routed it first, then began staining it.  I used MInwax brand oil-based stain. I tried brush & rag application & decided I liked the rag the best. (I bought plenty of plastic gloves!)
Sandra & I chose a 12" x 12" slate-like tile.

I did 2-3 coats of staining. I did 3 coats of oil based polyeurothane on the whole thing & 4 on the top. I light sanded after all applications. (The tile was left alone.)

I used Minwax paste wax on the table after it was done.

Friend, Bob Pattison, was my source of furniture finishing advice, as I hadn't really done too much before this.
I did not glue or fasten the tile in place---it's a snug fit. Should crumbs or dirt find it's wal into the little crack between the tile & top, I can pop the tyie out---clean up & reinsert it.

I drilled a 2" hole underneath the tile to ease the process of removing the tile if needed.
I am THRILLED with this!
all about the benjamins...

unassembled unfinished table ... $49.00
tile ... $ 1.99
side tables each ... $20
making your own one-of-a-kind matching tables ...  priceless

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I was so happy with the first table,
I bought matching "plant stands" and did the same procedure to them using a 6" tile. 
Now they're "end tables" flanking our couch.