6.18 2010

Fruits of the Spirit Table

This is the first time I’ve ever added decorative painting to my furniture, and I think it turned out really cool! Once again, I couldn’t get the lighting to cooperate to really show the true color.
I had some serious buyers remorse when I couldn’t decide what in the world to do with this table. I picked it up because of the chunky base. I knew it needed to be stripped so I could start with something fresh. I almost always strip the tops of my furniture because I like an extra smooth surface (unless it’s going to be really chippy and rustic). Somebody had applied lots of glaze to disguise a badly damaged table top. It needed more repairs than I was prepared for.
I decided to paint the edges black, then the whole thing creamy white. After I gave it an antique glaze and distressed the edges, thought it was a little boring and that it needed some words around the circle to make it sing! My mom-in-law was visiting at the time, and she gave me the great idea to do the fruits of the spirit. How fun would it be to sit around those words with your family every night? (Thanks for the idea, Mom!)

I printed the words in the font I wanted on the computer, then shaded the back of the words with pencil and traced them onto the table. I used a paint pen for the edges, then filled them in with paint and a tiny brush. After they were dry, I faded them out a bit with a damp cloth. Because the paint pen didn’t fade like I wanted, I couldn’t fade the words as much as I had hoped.

The base is so nice and chunky, and it will be easy to move chairs around it.

After 6 coats of acrylic polyurethane cured, I wet sanded it so that it is smoooooth to the touch. It looks and feels like glass. You can kind of see in this picture how smooth it is after polishing the final finish.
1) If you want to fade out your paint, I wouldn’t recommend using those acrylic paint pens. Use the bottles, dilute them with a little water, and use the tiniest brush you can get at the craft store. You will be able to outline your words or shapes nicely with a little patience. If you mess up, use a wet paper towel to remove the spot and start over.
2) My favorite tool for distressing edges is a razor blade. It is super fast.
3) Ben Moore Stays Clear in satin is the best topcoat I’ve ever used. It is made for wood flooring so it’s very durable! I let it cure for a week after applying as many coats as I can in a 2-day period so I can hand rub the finish for a super soft finish. I wet sand with soapy water (very soapy and wet, drying off as soon as I can), starting with 600 grit wet-dry sandpaper wrapped around an old, soft sanding block. I advance to 800, 1000, 1500 and even 2000 depending on the look I want. The higher you go, the shinier it’ll be. Don’t press too hard; just let the suction-cup feel do it’s thing. The key is letting it cure. Maybe a week is over-kill, but when it comes to curing, the longer the better and I don’t like to rush it. I don’t want all my hard work to be ruined by being impatient!
4) I like to store my foam rollers in ziplock bags and then in the refrigerator between coats so I don’t have to rinse them out.
Products Used:
Paint: Behr paint and primer in Cottage White, black paint for the edges (I had leftover Ben Moore Ironclad latex in black). 
Glaze: Normally I use burnt umber universal tint, but I used up some leftover brown glaze from another project (General Finishes Van Dyke Brown).
Words: Black acrylic paint from the craft store, thinned with water, and the tiniest brush I could find.
Topcoat: Ben Moore Stays Clear, satin. 6-7 coats applied with a foam roller in 2 days, not worrying about lap lines or roughness because the wet sanding takes care of all of that.
Tools: Foam rollers, chip brush for applying glaze, razer blade for distressing edges, wet-dry sandpaper in 600, 800, 1000, 1500 from automotive store.

21 thoughts on “Fruits of the Spirit Table

  1. Christa what a totally divine table. I throughly enjoyed your tut. I was so impressed that I was going to become a follower only to find that I was already a follower. I was looking at your link on "Tools are for Women Too" and did not even realize I was on your site. I appreciate all the detailed info that you provided. I can not wait to try the wet sanding. Can I use a power sander to do wet sanding?
    Thanks for sharing.

  2. WOW! I love the detail in this and the font you chose for the words. Thanks for the tips, always helpful. Very impressive.

    This is my first time to your blog and by the way, your daughters are BEAUTIFUL! But I am sure you already know that. :-)

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