Repurposing Ideas for Kid's Tables

Before and After Picture of the Table

Source

Wooden Kids Table

A friend of mine was recently cleaning out her basement and was getting rid of some of her kids' toys and furniture. She had a beautiful wooden kids table that was a little worn with love but still sturdy and in excellent condition. When she asked me if I wanted it I didn't give her a second chance to change her mind and quickly snatched it up. As we continued to talk, we shared ideas about how the table could be spruced up a bit to look like new. So after much thought and conversation, I decided to create a table that was a combination of a chalk board table and dry erase table. Here is a step by step guide of how I did it.

Pictures of Preparing the Wood Surface

Click thumbnail to view full-size
This is the table as I received itBe sure to remove all of the tape, glue, or other raised surfaces.Fill all chips and holes with wood filler before painting.Apply the wood filler where ever there are holes or chips.Smooth with flat end of the putty knife.  Allow to dry.Sand and smooth the surface.  Repeat with a second application of wood filler if necessary.The filled hole should be flush with the table.  Once it is painted there should not be any indication that there had been a hole.
This is the table as I received it
This is the table as I received it | Source
Be sure to remove all of the tape, glue, or other raised surfaces.
Be sure to remove all of the tape, glue, or other raised surfaces. | Source
Fill all chips and holes with wood filler before painting.
Fill all chips and holes with wood filler before painting. | Source
Apply the wood filler where ever there are holes or chips.
Apply the wood filler where ever there are holes or chips. | Source
Smooth with flat end of the putty knife.  Allow to dry.
Smooth with flat end of the putty knife. Allow to dry. | Source
Sand and smooth the surface.  Repeat with a second application of wood filler if necessary.
Sand and smooth the surface. Repeat with a second application of wood filler if necessary. | Source
The filled hole should be flush with the table.  Once it is painted there should not be any indication that there had been a hole.
The filled hole should be flush with the table. Once it is painted there should not be any indication that there had been a hole. | Source

Preparing the Surface to Refinish a Wooden Table

In order for the new paint to stick to the surface, the table to needs to be clean and slightly rough. First remove any pieces of tape or other items that may be stuck to the table top. *Then using the sanding attachment on a multipurpose tool, sand the table to remove the clear coat finish as well as giving the surface a slightly rough feel. Wipe with a damp cloth to remove all of the dust. Allow the surface to dry before proceeding.

If there are any chips or cracks in the surface of the table, fill them with wood filler. Using a putty knife, apply the wood filler and then smooth it out to create a flat and even surface. Allow to dry according to the directions on the container. Once the filler is dry, a quick sand of the filler will create an even working surface. If you find that the holes still need some additional filler, repeat the process a second time. After the filler dries, take a damp cloth and wipe the dust off of the table. Allow table to dry before applying the primer.

*Be sure to wear a mask while sanding the table to protect yourself from the dust that will be created from the sanding of the table.

Applying Primer to the Table

The addition of primer to the table has an important purpose. If you have ever painted anything, from wooden furniture to walls, you know that primer is the base in which your paint will adhere best to. If you choose to omit the primer, you will most likely need to apply several coats of paint for the paint to show its strongest colors without the surface beneath showing.

Since we were applying a black colored paint on one half and white on the other, we chose to use two different colored primers. A gray was used for the chalkboard paint and white was used for under the dry erase paint. Remember to always paint in a well ventilated area. If you cannot paint outdoors, open windows to allow the paint fumes to escape and fresh air to come in.

Photos of Applying the Chalkboard and Dry Erase Paint

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The paint that we used.Place painter's tape at the halfway point.Evenly roll the paint onto the surface of the table.Use even strokes to apply the dry erase paint.Even out the brush strokes on your final coat of paint.The table is complete with one side having dry erase paint and the other with chalkboard paint.
The paint that we used.
The paint that we used. | Source
Place painter's tape at the halfway point.
Place painter's tape at the halfway point. | Source
Evenly roll the paint onto the surface of the table.
Evenly roll the paint onto the surface of the table. | Source
Use even strokes to apply the dry erase paint.
Use even strokes to apply the dry erase paint. | Source
Even out the brush strokes on your final coat of paint.
Even out the brush strokes on your final coat of paint. | Source
The table is complete with one side having dry erase paint and the other with chalkboard paint.
The table is complete with one side having dry erase paint and the other with chalkboard paint. | Source

Applying Chalkboad Paint to a Wooden Table

Using the chalkboard paint was a new experience for us. My husband started out using a foam roller but quickly decided that he did not prefer it. When I researched what the best tools would be for this project, there were a few recommendations for this type of roller. He used the roller for the first coat of chalkboard paint. He felt as though it was smearing the paint which led to the need for a second coat of paint. He decided to finish the second coat of paint with a regular paint brush. Use the painting tool that you are most comfortable with. Be sure that you allow each coat to dry completely before adding any additional coats.

Applying Dry Erase Finish to a Wooden Table

Be sure to read the directions for this paint completely. You will receive two cans in the box for this paint. You will mix the cans together just before you are ready to paint. Be very cautious of your time constraints. After a certain period of time, the paint will no longer be usable.

Apply one to two coats of dry erase paint to the other half of the table. Remember that the surface will have a glossy shine to it. Although the paint may be dry to the touch, do not use the markers on the surface until the paint has had sufficient time to cure, usually 2-3 days.

Additional Embelishments

In order to have a clean appearance, I wanted to cover the line between the dry erase paint and the chalkboard paint. I decided to make this both appealing and purposeful, to add a magnetic strip to this section. I did not want to have a thick strip but to have the magnet be as flush to the table as possible. In order to accomplish this, I used magnet sheets that you might use for business cards or signs for the side of a car for advertisement. I thought that the magnet sheets that I purchased had an adhesive backing but they did not. I decided to use double sided tape to make it a smooth, mess free way to stick the magnets to the table.

We realized while we were painting that it would have been a good idea for us to attach a draw on rollers under the table to hold all of the magnet letters, markers, chalk, and erasers. This would make it easy for the kids to keep track of their materials and for everything to be in one place. We may go back and add this at a later time. If this sounds like something that you would like to add, do it BEFORE you paint! Our kids are very excited to give their new table a try!

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Comments 10 comments

RTalloni profile image

RTalloni 4 years ago from the short journey

You came up with a very useful idea for repurposing your kid's table! Your children must be enjoying it immensely. I'm glad they were able to experience watching you remake a piece of furniture--it's a lifetime lesson. :)


cardelean profile image

cardelean 4 years ago from Michigan Author

Thanks RTalloni. We just finished it up last night so they haven't had a chance to use it yet because I want it to be able to cure before they write on it. I'll update with some pics when they do! Thanks for reading and commenting.


Wib Magli profile image

Wib Magli 4 years ago from Tennessee and Alabama

That is a really good idea. I like the idea of taking something old and making something new.


randomcreative profile image

randomcreative 4 years ago from Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Great job, Cara! I'm sure that your kids will enjoy it. Thanks for the detailed ideas and photos.


cardelean profile image

cardelean 4 years ago from Michigan Author

Thanks Wib Magli. I like to reuse or recycle items as well. Not only does it give a unique appeal to something but it is earth friendly too!


cardelean profile image

cardelean 4 years ago from Michigan Author

You're welcome Rose. I'm so glad to have had you stop by to read and comment!


theclevercat profile image

theclevercat 4 years ago from Massachusetts

Great job, Cara! You could even attach a small bag to the table with screws into the side through its handles.


cardelean profile image

cardelean 4 years ago from Michigan Author

Or even just a little hook for the bag to hang on. Great idea, thanks! That's why you are theclevercat! :)


Denise Handlon profile image

Denise Handlon 4 years ago from North Carolina

WOW! It looks so easy to do-great video 'how to'. Thanks for sharing and the ending paragraph has some very useful points as well. Voted up


cardelean profile image

cardelean 4 years ago from Michigan Author

Thanks! Glad you enjoyed it!

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