coffee table revival

About 5 years ago, when we first got married, we inherited this coffee table from my sister.
It's an Ikea model she bought on clearance for $15, we scored it for free (thanks sis!)
And we have loved it ever since! 
Because our sofa is so short and our apartments have always been so small, its low and leggy modern profile has been a pretty perfect fit for us.
We even dig the dark grey color.
But as you can probably see, our love resulted in a lot of use.
The exterior was badly bubbling and peeling due to our never-ever using a coaster.

Since we kinda' get a thrill out of repurposing around here,
we had extensive conversations about how exactly we could revive this bad boy.
We toyed with the idea of upholstering it (kid friendly for the future) or trying our hand at recreating one of these expensive but so drool-worthy brick layers tables.
But our minds were made up when Ryan scored some free wood laminate leftover from a project at work. A lot of our household projects revolve around such freebies.
And so we got to work.
We stripped of the old, sanded down what was underneath, and adhered the new.
Lucky for us we had free-reign of a work shop and all its' tools.
And there were only a few minor hiccups along the way as our measurements were a tad off on one side.
But the hardest part was letting this baby sit for 2 days to allow the wood glue to dry. 
Oh how tortuous was the waiting after we'd worked so hard!

She was quite the sight I might add. 
And I'll even admit, at this stage of the game I was fairly certain we had ruined her.
She looked such a mess with all these clamps and wood glue seeping out everywhere.
Luckily once freed all those leeks peeled right off, and a quick sand made her look good as new.
And then it was just the minor decision of deciding what color stain we should use.
Correction; this was not a minor decision.
We surprisingly had very different and equally strong opinions on the matter.
Hubs was all about dark rich woods, and I wanted to go with something greyed or driftwood-y looking.
Finally we settled on a happy medium with this natural oil finish.

We actually finished the project way back in July, but I love it more and more every day.
We are both thrilled with the color choice (hooray us!) and I love when I'm forced to compromise.
I think the meshing of two personalities in design always makes an interior look so much more organic and dynamic rather than over-thought-out and matchy-matchy.


It's surprising how big a difference this one piece of furniture makes in our living room.
And our only expense for the entire project was a bottle of $7 wood glue and $5 oil finish.
A pretty cheap makeover if I do say so myself. 


  1. OH MY GOSH. I totally LOVE IT. I'm also so sad that I haven't seen it yet. But...seriously, it looks perfect- just like EVERYTHING you do. Good work Leah. And Yan.

  2. I love this! Nice work- both of you.

  3. Oh thanks you guys, we kinda' love it too. ♥

  4. LOVE. love. love. that is all i have to say!

  5. You are so talented. Everything you do is adorable.


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