Happy Thursday, friends! I hope you are well! I’ve been busy this week working on a fun project for our precious grandson. It’s finished and I can’t wait to show you! Come see how to make a play table!
I’ve had this coffee table for years and years. When I bought it, I painted the top black and rubbed it with gold. The base was painted gray with a dark wax finish. It sat in our formal living room in Doylestown until we moved to North Carolina and no longer had room for it. It sat in the breezeway at our lake house ever since.
It was driving my husband crazy because we couldn’t walk through the breeze way because of the coffee table and other things. He wanted me to get rid of it. I thought about it, but it was such a good table. Then I had an ah-ha moment! I could refinish it and repurpose it as a play table for our grandson! I started by stripping the top of the table.
At first I used a liquid stripper to remove the black paint. Then I used my Corner Cat sander by Black and Decker and it did the trick! It took about an hour to fully sand the top and get it down to the bare wood. I also lightly sanded the base and legs but since I was going to paint them, that was enough.
The top of the table turned out looking great! I love the knots and grain in the wood, so I decided to keep it as natural as possible.
In order to paint the base of the table and legs, I spread a moving blanket on the deck and put the table on some 2×4’s so I could better paint the legs.
I used an indoor/outdoor acrylic latex paint in a black satin finish by Krylon. (from my stash) It was paint I’ve used on numerous other furniture projects and I love its durable finish. It’s also soap and water clean up making it easy to use. Plus, one quart goes a long way! I did two coats on the base and legs. (You can see how excited Lacey was about my rainy day project.)
The insides of the drawers were fine. I just vacuumed them out and wiped them clean.
To go along with the black theme I added some contact paper I had from another project. (Note: When you cut the paper to size, use the ruled paper guide on the back to cut straight lines and use a sharp exacto knife. Also, put the factory cut line on the front edge of the drawer since it’s the one you see.)
For the three drawers, I switched out the original hardware with some fun pulls and a knob from my stash. I thought the bright red and black reminded me of a caboose on a train. Plus, they are large and will be easy for our grandson to pull.
Aren’t they cute? I’ve had them for years and finally found the perfect use for them.
For the top of the table I wanted to keep it simple. But because it’s going to be used as a coffee table in addition to a play table, I needed to seal it to prevent stains, etc. So, I bought a small can of Shellac by Zinsser in a clear finish. I applied three coats with a paint brush, allowing to dry for a few hours in between coats. It still has a bit of a sheen but it’s fine.
Once the table was completely dry, we moved it to its new location on the deck in front of the fireplace.
The newly finished table blends perfectly with the other wood and black elements.
We kept our precious grandson, Ford, yesterday and while he was napping, I filled the drawers with his “Thomas” trains (many of which were my boy’s trains when they were little.)
The other two drawers I filled with tracks and accessories.
Also while Ford was napping I put together a fun track with several tunnels and a bridge.
I admit it took me a while, since I’m out of practice assembling a track.
Someone really should write a how-to book on train track assembly for dummies. The round-about was tricky!
You should have see the look on Ford’s face when he woke up from his nap and saw his play table and train set all put together! He was delighted!
He literally played on this table ALL day long. (Except when we took a boat ride.)
He quickly learned how to open and close the drawers so he could switch out the trains, or add more.
He was fascinated by making the trains go under the tunnels. Such a little boy, through and through.
The table is the perfect height for Ford to stand and play. At one point we put away the trains and got out the trucks, but it wasn’t long before he was pushing the trucks out of the way and pulling out the trains again. I love how the trains and track store neatly out of the way when not in use. Plus, we can use the large surface to prop up our feet or to serve appetizers and drinks. (With Ford’s permission of course!)
A quick before and after picture. This project cost me $6 for the shellac and a few hours of elbow grease. And it was worth every minute.
This simple project goes to show you can still have toys in your living room or den and not have it look like a play room. When our boys were young I stored a bin of toys under the coffee table in the den so I could keep an eye on them while I cooked dinner, etc. But this is a much better solution! I think I paid $60 for this table years ago, so if you are in the market for something similar, be sure to keep your eye out on Facebook Marketplace or yard sales. Then simply paint it to match your decor. Wallah! An attractive and functional coffee table that doubles as a play table!
Well, thanks for stopping by and checking out my latest DIY project! Ford and I are pleased as punch about it! I hope you have a wonderful day. Drop me a comment and let me know what you think! Until next time~Hugs and kisses! Dell