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Hamptons Style Coffee Table Revamp

As we love saving money by up cycling, I was on the hunt for a pre-loved coffee table that I could restyle and revamp to display in the upstairs living area of my new Hamptons/Coastal home, which for sale at the time.

After several visits to charity shops, bargain centres and factory outlets etc., I came across an old, damaged, Bali style coffee table in the throw out bin of a furniture wholesalers. It was in such bad condition it actually had dried seaweed attached to it from being shipped. However, this didn’t worry me – I had a vision of what I wanted, and this style of table fitted  the bill perfectly. It cost me only $25.

The many photos of Hamptons style coffee tables I had from Pinterest helped me decide which piece of pre-loved furniture to buy. The same principal can be used for any piece of old furniture you want to transform – if you have a vision of what you want your end result to look like, compare pre-loved pieces of furniture to pictures add a little imagination and see if you can make it work.

The following ‘How To’ guide is the process I went through to transform my bargain coffee table buy, and can be used as a guide to help you restyle and revamp old and tired wooden furniture.


Tools Needed:

Builders bog and spatula
Undercoat with Stain blocking capacity
Semi-Gloss Acrylic Paint
Step by Step ‘How To’ Instructions:

1. Remove Old Stain

Remove the coat of ‘finish’ on the coffee table, which had been sprayed over the top of the stain to protect it. To do this, use a medium grade sandpaper, rubbing it back and forth over the top of the old finish until it begins to powder off. If the powder begins to accumulate, brush it off and tap the sandpaper to release the powder from among the grit. Continue until the top coat is either removed or very smooth.

Change to a lighter grade sandpaper and follow the same process, which will make the surface even smoother. The stain goes below the surface and into the wood, so you won’t remove the stain.

Using a belt sander on the larger surfaces will save time and energy, but using a piece of sandpaper by itself, or with a sanding block, will also work just fine.

2. Change the Style

With this particular coffee table, I cut off straight rungs that were fixed horizontally at each end of the coffee table, to eliminate the Bali look. I then replaced them with two criss-crossed pieces of wood, to introduce a more Hamptons style appearance.

You can reinvent your table into any style you wish.

3. Undercoat

Apply one or two coats of undercoat to the entire coffee table, using a brush or small foam roller. A water based undercoat of any brand is usually sufficient.

As my coffee table had been stained in a heavy dark brown colour, I used two coast of Zinsser Cover Stain so I could achieve a white final product, without the original brown bleeding through my fresh coats of paint. Once this was done, I sanded my table once again, very lightly with a fine sandpaper.


4. Repair Damaged Wood

Imperfections in the wood are made obvious by the undercoat and need to be filled.

To do this, follow the below steps:

Mix together Builders Bog (a timber repair filler available at hardware stores) in a small jar, following packet instructions. Builders Bog can be mixed to set slowly or quickly, depending on the ratio of hardener added.
Use a spatula to take small amounts of the mixed Builders Bog from the jar, drag it across your furniture’s imperfections, and push it into any holes to fill them. You may need to repeat this process for larger holes.
Allow the filler to dry and then sand until smooth to touch.
Touch up with undercoat.
Other types of wood fillers may be used, however, in my experience they can take a lot longer to dry and therefore cannot be sanded until the next day. Other brands can also be sloppy when first opened and become crumbly when they dry out.

5. Finish in Semi-Gloss

Apply two coats of acrylic semi-gloss in white. For this coffee table, Dulux Aquanamel was used. This acrylic is very durable and popular for doors and trim as it will not turn yellow over time. Small foam rollers designed to produce the smoothest finish were used to apply the acrylic.



For a more casual look, consider using a matt paint or Annie Sloan’s Chalk Paint and slightly distress the edges.

By Belle 2