Wednesday, April 17, 2013

A Made to Order Farm Table!

Jacki's awesome new farm table!
Hello Adorable Readers and Happy Humpday! I can only greet you through the haze of my decongestant! As a native North Carolinian, I cannot recall a heavier pollen season. At least yellow is a great color...that's the best silver lining I can find.

You may recall our post on lightening up  a few weeks ago.......We're revisiting that as it relates to Jacki's awesome, new farm table.

Jacki was pining away (all puns intended) for a farm table for her eat-in kitchen. Since her handy hubby put the kabash on her dropping $2,000 at the local Restoration Hardware, he had no choice but to whip out some power tools!

Inspiration pics:


Metal bar supporting table

Restoration Hardware

It seems that the multiple chandelier's over the dining table are trending right now.

More contrast needed? But, I do love the light wood and the rustic look!
One of the contractor's that we work with, Chris, scored some reclaimed barn wood from a barn that was torn down in Durham, NC.

This barn ceiling started out as 16 foot planks. They were cut in half to create a perfect 8 foot table size.

After the boards were planed and sanded, they were joined together to create the top.

Next came the X base created from much larger reclaimed barn beams.

Unfortunately, the barn wood had a slight twist in each piece. Patrick was optimistic that it would lessen with the weight of the legs and table when it was all assembled. That was not the case, but adding a steel frame as an apron easily removed the twist. It was either that, or park our car on the tabletop for three months. You may want to avoid this by selecting perfect wood or by alternating twists if possible.

Bob welding a frame to straighten out the warp in the wood. This frame was attached to the underside of the table and a faux oil rubbed bronze finish applied.

Jacki was so excited, the table got to come in before it was finished for a quick test drive!

We had a good time beating the table to smithereens to create the distressed look.
This barn was one sturdy structure. The wood is heavy and solid.  It is best to make your table so that it can be dissembled so it is not too big or heavy to move. This one weighs around 500 pounds and we had to remove the window to bring it in the house.

Not quite the stain color envisioned. Sigh..
Once we added the stain, there was a bit of a problem. It blended right in with the chocolate curtains and the dark hardwoods. This is actually a serious dilemma. After the dozens of hours of hard work put in by handy hubby, there was NO way it was getting restained, removed or remodeled in any way, shape or form. Hmmmm.....
With the brown floors, the brown stained chairs, the HUGE eight foot BROWN stained table, we're talking a LOT of brown.

The flash in this picture helps a little, but unless it's a sun-shiny day outside, it was pretty dark.

Solution #1: Camo
Spring was the perfect excuse for some lighter, brighter camouflage! 
Found this cute tablecloth at Homegoods.
Of course flowers make it even prettier!

Then pure genius struck! 

Solution #2: A rug
A rug in a lighter shade creates a backdrop that allows the table to really *POP*!
This one is from Home Decorators and is called Home Decorator's Saddlestitch Indoor/Outdoor Rug
What a wonderful difference the rug makes! The dark stain is growing on me.
The cheetah chairs were $30 each at Habitat. Thank you to whomever donated those~ Score!

Now you can really SEE the beauty and craftsmanship of the table. It took Patrick months to complete this project and it's something we will have forever. (He said he'd kill me if I sold this one on CraigsList).

Speaking of Craigslist, it's a perfect source to find old barnwood to create your own DIY farm table. I found this one nearby in Efland, NC. Here's the link: Barn on Craigslist

 Patrick has created some steps to follow if you are interested in attempting a masterpiece of your own:

  1. Determine your table size. Buying lumber by the board foot might need some explanation. A board foot of lumber is 1 square foot at 1” thick. If you desire a thicker table, each square foot will be multiplied by the thickness to get the total number of board feet. A table that is 3’ x 7’ and 2 inches thick is 42 board feet. This also varies if it is rough cut or finished. Your table will turn out best if you can either pick through the lumber or get lumber that is longer than you need. You may end up buying 60 board feet for your 3’ x 7’ table.                                           
2. Figure out the legs. 4 straight legs is easiest, but you need to also consider how to connect those legs and still have room for chairs. There are endless choices for the legs, just find a look you like and try to implement it. These may come from posts in an old barn if you want a larger dimensioned leg. You can also laminate thinner lumber to get that look.

3.       Prepare the lumber. If you get the wood from an old barn, it is very likely that the lumber will be rough cut and need some finish work to prepare for a table.

a.       The first part of this is to remove all metal from the wood. This may be old nails or staples in the wood. This might be where you first decide to quit. This is time-consuming and may seem never ending, but it is important to prevent damage to your prized tools.
b.      Next, you need to try to best get the sides parallel and the thickness consistent. This is the part that requires the most specialized tools for a perfect stack of ready lumber. A planer, jointer and large panel sander would be nice,  but most people don’t have one. If you do, you probably already know what to do to get your lumber ready. Another option is to do your best with simpler tools. You can use a circular saw coupled with a long edge clamp to get one edge straight. Once you get that straight side, you can cut the other on a table saw to get the desired board width. This isn’t a perfect way since your “top” surface may not be straight.

4.       Once you have 2 parallel sides, you can start joining your boards to get the total width of the table. Use glue and good clamps.

5.       Sand, sand, sand. You will likely need a belt sander with a very rough belt (36 or 60 grit)to get the rough cut finish knocked off.

6.       Cut the end of the table to length.

7.       Build the legs.

8.       Attach the top.

9.       Apply your stain and finish.

Don't forget to read yesterday's post to enter to win our $50 Plow & Hearth gift card!!!

Linking up with Not Just a Housewife!
Check out this blog when you have time; it's great!


  1. It's wonderful! Just beautiful and will last a lifetime. You are so talented, Patrick!

    1. Thanks for stopping by Trish! Did you enter to win the Plow & Hearth gift card?

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