Coffee Table

Here’s a coffee table I made for my mum and dad for Christmas.  They had a cheap, wobbly melamine table that was basically good for nothing - their cat could barely balance on it! So I thought I’d make something solid and sturdy and with a shelf so that they had somewhere to put their TV guide (who still buys TV guides??)

I made the table top and shelf from a pine headboard that I found by some bins. It had a curvy pattern routed in it on one side, so I made sure that that side was facing down!  The legs were made from a 3x2 piece of timber, and the stretchers are old pine bed slats, also found by a bin (but incidentally not from the same bed as the headboard)!

I experimented quite a bit with stains on some offcuts as I wanted the colour to match their other oak-ish coloured furniture.  I read somewhere that to stop pine turning that horrible orangey colour over time, you could use a white stain to lighten the tone of the wood.  So I bought some white dye, an oak stain and an acrylic satin varnish (as acrylic is the only finish that doesn’t seem to affect the colour of the wood).  

I experimented quite a bit with these to get the right colour, and ended up combining the white dye and the oak stain with a bit of water and a drop of acrylic varnish to bind it, and mixed it until it looked like the colour of a cup of tea, and that gave me the colour I was looking for which was actually a bit lighter as I knew the pine would darken over time so in a few months hopefully it’ll match their other oak coloured furniture quite well.

Then I rubbed it down with a 400 grit wet & dry paper and gave it a final coat of acrylic for a smooth finish…

They seemed pretty happy with it :-)