Where it all began:
One beautiful Saturday, my mom, grandma, and I were walking out of an antique mall when a unique piece caught my eye. It was a charming speckled blue and white enamel top table from the early 1900s. The table was chipping and dirty, but I was able to look past its flaws and see the piece’s true potential. My mom and I were equally in love and the $55 price tag was screaming, “buy me,” as my grandma skeptically stared at it. I just knew it was meant to be in my kitchen, so I made the purchase and we packed it into the car!
When I brought it home, my husband was even more skeptical than my grandma when I introduced him to our new kitchen table. The dust, chipping paint, and wobbling legs scared him and he couldn’t see my vision! I promised him that if he absolutely hated the table I was finished restoring it, we could easily make back double the money it cost us. I don’t think he believed me, but I knew it was going to be perfect when I was done!
Making a plan and gathering supplies:
There were two elements of this table that I needed to tackle: the enamel top and the base. For the enamel top, I wanted to keep the endearing quality of the chips, but I also wanted to keep it from rusting further. After some research, I decided on two different methods. The bottom of the enamel top was rusting a lot along the edges, so I decided to purchase a small can of white Rust-Oleum Protective Enamel paint. That would do the trick for sealing in the rust underneath the table that wasn’t visible. I didn’t want the cute visible chips on the top to be filled in with white, so I decided to seal them with a few coats of clear nail polish! That would help to protect them from rusting or chipping further.
I had two options with the base: to strip it down to the wood or paint it a different color! I’m honestly not sure why someone painted it grey in the first place. I decided that it would look best with a fresh coat of white paint! Since it was chipping so badly, I knew I would need to sand it down to smooth it out before applying any paint. I also knew that I would need to give it a good scrubbing before I could get started on anything!
My final list of supplies was as follows:
- 1 quart Rust-Oleum Gloss White Protective Enamel Paint ($8.46)
- 1 quart white Valspar Project Perfect paint ($9.78)
- Paint brush
- Sally Hansen Hard as Nails clear coat nail polish ($1.97)
- 1 package of Magic Erasers – ($1)
- Dish soap
Total cost for the supplies: $21.20
Doing the Work:
The sunny weather determined my first step, which was to work on the base! I hauled the table outside and took off the legs and hardware. Then, I sanded it down so that it was smooth and cleaned it with soapy water. It was ready to be painted! Two coats and a few touch-ups later, the table was looking beautiful. When it was dry, we took it inside so that I could get to work on the enamel top.
First, I worked to remove the yellowish looking stain from the top by using a package of my best friends, Magic Erasers. They made the top look clean in no time! Then, I flipped the table top and started applying the Rust-Oleum to the rusted/chipped areas along the bottom. I did two coats and let each dry for about 12 hours.
Once the Rust-Oleum was dry, I put the legs back on and sealed the chips on top with a couple of coats of clear nail polish. That worked great! It gave the chips the protection they needed while still keeping the character of the table intact.
The Finished Product:
I was so excited to finally replace our old kitchen table with the newly restored enamel top! It is unique and fits in our kitchen perfectly. It just makes me so happy! My husband was really surprised by how it turned out and he absolutely loves it, as well. He’s now learning to trust my visions!