What did I do wrong???

July 13th, 2011 in member junk     
SarahMc SarahMc, member
4 users recommend

The unsightly finished product
See the inconsistancy of color??
Another top view
The unsightly finished product

The unsightly finished product

My computer crashed between starting and finishing this project.  Please see my previous posts to find before photos.

I really wanted to do a refinish on this old farm table.  I STRUGGLED!!!!!! I am not happy with the outcome and not saying I would try to refinish anything ever again, but looking for feedback as to what on earth went wrong!!!!!  I put a zillion hours in using first an "earth friendly" stripper, then stepping up to the big guns.  I sanded, I  used wire brushes and still could NOT get all the paint off of this table.  So frustrating!!!   I have seen some gorgeous pcs on here and would love to know what I could have done differently.

Thanks so much!!!!!

posted in: member junk, wood, farm, table

Comments (12)

mamapackrat writes: This is a super late post but there is a special sealer that prevents the lead paint residual from being hazardous. Other than that suggestion to assuage your fears for your daycare subjects, I think this a VERY nice table/desk. If the lighter drawer troubles you, cover it with fabric and mod podge!

I'm sure you've resolved by now but I thought you may like to know that there is a sealer out there specifically for lead paint residue. Posted: 3:17 pm on January 10th
Prior writes: love the table...paint, sand, rub some stain on it, then wax or poly...or go totally the other way and put a coat of oil based paint on it, either way it is a wonderful table Posted: 1:57 pm on July 18th
paterd writes: Some types of wood just don't take stains very well, I had a dresser I tried to stain and it would not take the stain no matter what, so it ended up being the natural color, which was beautiful. Also, I don't see where all the paint didn't come off, guess I need to see a closeup photo. You could try a different stripper, but if the paint soaked into the grain, it probably won't come out. Why not paint the top and leave the rest natural. I guess I'm kind of confused, you say the top has never been painted, yet you say all the paint wouldn't come off? The drawer looks like a completely different type/color of wood too. Posted: 7:52 am on July 18th
smiller0529 writes: I like the way it turned out too! I agree with either putting some wax or poly urethane it. Posted: 3:51 pm on July 16th
oldnews writes: Shoot, wish I lived nearby, I LOVE a wood challenge! There are color tinted stains too, that might be fun to try. It's hard to tell just from a picture, but I do think that if you tried a clear poly coat it might even it up quite a bit. It's such a cute little desk! Sounds like the wood has been so over treated with layers and layers of finish, that the wood cant absorb anything more. That's probably why stain isn't working. Good luck with it! Marie Posted: 8:42 am on July 15th
suewhitney writes: I have to say, Sarah that I do not at all mind the finish you came out with. It's what I call perfect imperfection. I think all you really need is some wax or a couple coats of poly and the finish might become more appealing to you. Remember th beat up look is sometimes adds needed character and charm to a home. If you pair this piece with another that has a finer finish you may just be surprised at how much you like it!

Take care,
Sue Posted: 6:23 am on July 15th
gamecockchic writes: I would put a poly-stain on the top. This will help to even out the wood's color and also make it easier to clean. I'd certainly try this before going for the paint since you worked so hard to get the paint off and don't seem to really want it painted. If it still looks like poo, you can always paint over it then (although I don't think you'll need to).

I'd mod podge a pretty paper, napkin, map, tissue paper, whatever on the front of the drawer and maybe add a funky knob.

Then, you could either poly-stain the bottom or paint the bottom a color to coordinate with drawer front. Posted: 3:01 pm on July 14th
SarahMc writes: Thank you for the feedback - and Jim this project required LOTS of wine!!! LOL
Oh my goodness!!! It WAS painted to start with, 4-7 layers depending on what part of the table!!! I run a licensed daycare from my home and I am fairly confident that the chippy paint was lead based, thus the stripping and refinishing. I cant imagine painting it quite honestly! Guess I will just have to embrace all the character it has under that stain job.............. :) :) :)
Posted: 9:37 am on July 14th
texasjunkermom writes: What Jim said! You are a lot like me, I have trouble distressing what I want to be a beautiful refinising job. But sometimes, you just have to do that. It doesn't have to be drastic, just start with a paint color that works with your other things and go from there. (I recommend chenin blanc!)T Posted: 9:00 am on July 14th
sandyrae writes: I agree with Jim.
Don't ever give up and keep at it. Sometimes my biggest screw ups turn out to be my favorite pieces.
Sandy Posted: 7:16 am on July 14th
JunkArchitect writes: Paint it, distress it, then pop open a bottle of wine and forget about it.
That's my design tip of the day...always works for me!


Posted: 6:04 am on July 14th
SarahMc writes: Also, I tried to stain the top and drawer the same color, the top had never been painted or tainted in any way, and it sucked up the color and I couldnt wipe it down to match the drawer. :(
Posted: 7:23 pm on July 13th
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