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Furniture Makeover: Dining Table Before & After

by | Aug 25, 2010 | Before and After Home, Decorating Inspiration, Details

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Furniture Makeover: Dining Table Before & After

Furniture Makeover

As you probably know, I’m never satisfied to have JUST ONE project going on at a time. I’m usually all over the map at my house, tackling 12 billion things at once. It seems things take forever to get done.

But the beauty of my “work on everything all at once” approach is that sometimes LOTS of projects get FINISHED all at once. That, I like.

Furniture Makeover: Dining Table Before & After


Just when I shocked a few of you by admitting that I painted my antique coffee table blue, this weekend I also finished painting my previously unpainted WOOD dining table WHITE. Yes, I painted another wood table. See what it looked like BEFORE?


DISCLAIMER: This table was just a simple not fancy pine Pottery Barn circa 1990 something, no antiques were maimed or devalued in this makeover. I do LOVE natural wood and have no intentions of painting ALL of my wood pieces. Just the less than lovely ones that need a little lift. 

And now it’s white.

As you can see in the top after pic (yes, this picture was added to this original post to show you what it looks like with the leaves!), I didn’t paint the leaves. So now I’ve got a two toned white and wood table, which apparently is quite trendy now, but for me it was just one of those happy trend setting decorating accidents! Ha!

Furniture Makeover: Dining Table Before & After

It is not perfectly distressed. It is not perfectly painted. It is not perfectly anything. I simply used a coat of Zinsser primer and a coat of white trim paint. DONE. All of these pictures are the same table makeover, just in various stages of my ever-changing dining room decor!

Furniture Makeover: Dining Table Before & After

The truth about why I’m completing painting projects is that I had a deadline this past weekend.  When I have a worthy deadline, I find the time to finish all sorts of things.

Do you work better under a DEADLINE?


  1. Kayleen

    I definitely do better with deadlines. I don’t know why I put that kind of stress on myself (and my HH) but it does seem to help us get things done. We’ve painted rooms, complete with wall paper trim the night before a huge extended family event. Remodeled the basement before another family event. Not the night before, but definitely a challenging time frame. Anywho, it keeps life interesting and does help me not drag things on and on. Like my current project is doing now!

  2. emily


  3. Stacy

    You are speaking my language! LOL! I ALWAYS work better with a deadline, even though I don’t really like the stress of it and it’s not always the greatest for my family and I ALWAYS have a bunch of things going at once! I tell myself, this is crazy, but in some weird kinda way it works for me : ) I am noticing that ever since I started blogging and learning about all the other DIY/decor bloggers out there…that there are people like me…what a relief! Thought I was the only one : )

  4. Becky K.

    There is no question that I am best with a deadline.

    I like the table with its white paint.
    It pops.

    Becky K.

  5. Shannon

    You’d don’t like the wall color? I love it! Your house is lovely!

  6. Robin~All Things Heart and Home

    Boy do I evah! The Husband set a time 2 weeks out to refinish the hardwood floors. In that 2 weeks I repainted the entire downstairs…including all my wood moldings, wainscoting, doors, AND kitchen cabinets!
    (Lost 5 lbs in the process! :) )
    You table looks wonderful. If you have anything else to paint drop in…today’s (Thursday) is the last day of my Behr Paint giveaway!

  7. Puna

    I am becoming more of a white furniture person each time I see wonderful makeovers like this. There’s just something about seeing the fresh white.

  8. Madigan at madiganmade

    Sometimes good enough is just that: good enough.
    (that’s my favorite section of Good Housekeeping, too)
    The table looks beautiful. Good luck with the photos!

  9. Carol

    Always work with a deadline, hence the name!!lol I love to entertain and that’s secretly one of the reasons why! ( don’t tells hubs) I get so many “to-dos “done before the big event!! I could definitely see myself in your situation, you described above!!Come see me!
    Carol in GA

  10. Mona Kay at Home

    It’s funny…it seems some of my best projects are spur-of-the-moment…as in, one minute I’m drinking my coffee, the next minute I’m spray-painting a table. I think it’s a little neurotic, but what can you do? :)

    LOVE the table & bureau behind it!!

  11. Ellie

    Just found your blog – it’s so fun! and yes, I am a different person with a deadline!

  12. Tara

    love the table…and the chairs….

    can’t wait to see more!

  13. Franki Parde

    WHY IS THAT??? The deadline pressure brings on some of the most creative juices…is that a “good thing?!?!” I’m with you as it seems I’m doing a “gazillion” things at once. It is nice to know there are “many of us” out there…………. :-) franki

  14. Mary Joy

    I totally work better with a deadline!!!! Just ask my husband! LOL

    I also happened to really love what you did with your dining room table. I (heart) white tables with chairs in pretty different colors!! That is what I am working toward doing with our dining room! Just waiting to find the right table so that I can paint it white and get the ball rolling! Thanks again for sharing it with us. And thank you so much for sharing your “real” life with us.

    PS..thanks for stopping by my giveaway! :)

  15. Arlene

    Love that white table!! Not all wood is pretty wood. We recently received a table that was wood but veneer was peeling and gingerbread trim was broken on one side. I painted it Nantucket Gray , covered the top with family pictures and it looks fine! Saved me the cost of having it refinished and repaired.

    I like deadlines as they keep me on target! I am LOVING your blog. Thanks for lots of inspiration!

  16. Imperfect

    Yes, I work better under a deadline. It usually means I’m a little more stressed than if I could work on an open, free schedule, but it also usually means I can crank out some of my best work. Odd? Yes, probably.

  17. Julie

    Always! I remember when we lived in our first house and we were hosting a huge summer party ….. about a week before we decided to replace all our flat doors with 6-panel doors …. that we bought unpainted. Nothing like a party to get you in gear to paint 20 doors quickly!

  18. mary b

    Deadlines are a huge motivator for me!
    I do love the white table…I’m not against painting all wood, I have done my fair share LOL!
    Now if I could only bring myself to paint all the wood doors & trim in my house…

  19. Beth Williams

    I truly do better with deadlines & projects to accomplish, no matter how small they may seem. Being busy/productive motivates me to push myself to work harder.

    No deadlines or projects makes me lazy & feel like I’m wasting time, which is so precious to me.

    Our 1960s built house is a never-ending project. Next is getting a metal roof, & new sliding door for basement. Can’t wait till we tackle the kitchen!

  20. Talysa

    Are you a part time drummer too???? ;-) I have one in my midst so my eyes immediately scoped out the bass drum.

    Love the table. And the chairs!

  21. Jess

    I always work better with a deadline! Procrastiation is my greatest strength! I have to say that honestly – now that I have the blog – I get a lot more of my “projects” done than I normally would!

  22. Jayme

    What is the paint color on the walls-very relaxing..
    Thank you.

    • Melissa

      Be sure to look at it in all lights at your home first….at my house it usually looks too pink to me. It is not my favorite color when it looks like a pink pig…SWINE is what I call it but it is really called Familiar Beige SW 6093 (sherwin williams)

  23. Kathy

    I work better under a deadline because I have to get whatever it is done. I don’t necessarily like it, because I tend to be stressed and snappish. On the other hand, if I have too much time to do something I get lazy about it and will put it off until I can’t any longer.

  24. Paige

    Love, Love, Love the table. Love your blog! I just snatched up a table (very similar to yours) at an antique shop on the east end of Long Island. Got myself a DIY project! I’m planning on paiting it an anitique white. So looking forward to it.

  25. Pat

    I love it, Melissa!

    Do you have seagrass or another natural fiber rug, over your carpet? I have been wondering about doing something like this at the lake.

    • Melissa

      Yes indeed! Actually it is jute. Hate my carpet but not ready to pay for hardwoods yet, so this was a solution to make me not think about it so much! :-)

  26. Screaming Meme

    Girl, we are two peas in a pod! lol I love your home…it is coming along beautifully! I haven’t been here in awhile…so glad I stopped in! With fall around the corner and the kids back in school…I have more time to visit my favorite blogs…Have you been working on any designs outside of your own? Hugs, Meme

  27. Jacque

    It seems that I work best with a deadline. Though I try not to procrastinate, inevitably, it happens anyway because the ideas for what is due just don’t ‘flow’ until the adrenaline and fear of missing the deadline actually kick in. Normally, I have no problem getting inspiration for something ELSE that isn’t needed in a timely manner (read that anything other than what is due). So while I end up completing the one major project in a hassled and harried manner, I also get a few other things done along the way too.

    It drives my husband semi-nuts but, after almost 16 years of marriage, he knows that pattern of my behavior and when to say, “Okay, enough procrastination projects for you. Get what NEEDS to be done finished.”

    Gotta love it. Just like your newly painted table. It’s just lovely. One of your earlier blog posts actually inspired me to paint my kitchen table this summer (it was one of my procrastination projects when something else was due). It’s been black for a few months now and I just adore it. Unfortunately, now I’ve got to do the chairs. Wonder when my next big deadline will loom because that’s probably when they’ll get done. LOL.

  28. Ronnell

    Are you serious? . . . ummm YES, I definately to better with a deadline and I may be up half the night but it always gets done and looks great. The table looks wonderful! Can’t wait to see your pics!

  29. Vanessa

    Hi! I love your blog! I just realized that we are both NW (I’m in Salem)gals and it is so fun to meet someone else here in Blogland who lives in this part of the country! Your home is gorgeous and thank you for sharing all of your wonderful inspiration,

  30. Sheila

    Just a quick encouragement from one church planter-preacher’s wife to another – I LOVE YOUR BLOG! :-) Keep up the good work. I love how you post pretty much every day. I love your outlook on life and decorating. (I, too, sooooooooooooooo “heart” interior design!)

    Thanks for being a part of my day…

    • Melissa

      THANK YOU! xoxo

  31. Cindy

    What kind of paint did you use? I have a table painted with an eggshell finish, but it scratches and knicks very easily.

    • Melissa

      It is a semi gloss that was from my woodwork in the house! I think oil based might be stronger but mine is latex.

  32. Jenn

    So, I’m not the only one who has a million unfinished projects going on, then starts a new one? WHEW, good to know! The table looks great! The whole room looks great! I love the numbers on the back of the chairs!

  33. Design Love


    Thanks for visiting me! Nice to meet you…
    Your home is gorgeous! I definately work better with a deadline…otherwise I procrastinate!



  34. Sandy

    I actually like a deadline to keep me on track.
    btw… I have that same vase, from TJMaxx I think, in my daughter’s room. When she moved out I needed a few more aqua pieces. I love the texture of it!

  35. Vee

    Okay, this is a project that needs doing so much here. I am sick of the worn out top on my dining room table, which I am keeping covered with tablecloths, etc. It so needs to be painted and mine is circa 1995 and nothing special either. I’ve been thinking of it for over a year, but this may just give me the impetus to get going. Thanks! Do I work best under pressure? Not especially, but after confessing that this project has been in the planning stages for over a year…maybe. My other problem is that I loathe making messes. Off to read your article…

  36. Connie

    I have been following you blog almost 2 years… I started in Oct – at the procrastination party. It’s just my kind of thing. I have recently started a blog – a project I really wanted to do. I have blogged about my coming projects for fall. Blog is crossed off the list… not for some wonderful projects. I love the white table, it gives me courage to paint mind!

    Keep up the excellent posts!

    • Melissa

      Congrats on starting a blog!! :-) And thanks for following for almost 2 years! xoxo

  37. Fiona Sanders

    I DON’T do better with deadlines. They stress me out, because it just seems like as soon as I set a deadline, anything and everything will come along and mess it up.

    Although they are motivational, I try not to work that way. It can make Fiona cranky!

  38. Karen

    My husband thrives on deadlines…I on the other hand like things crossed off my list minutes after they are on there. I know the word that comes to mind when you think of people like me—well, I guess its true. :-)

    I love the table and the setting—what magazine is your lovely home appearing in?


  39. Lisa~

    I guess I’m different, because I don’t usually need a deadline to finish things. I am a finisher. I have this personal rule that I can’t start one project until I finish the last one, so I finish. I guess it’s like a deadline in that I want to move on, so I make myself get it done. But it’s nice because I don’t have a bunch of unfinished projects around. They are all just up in my head waiting to get stated. The table looks amazing, by the way! Lisa~

  40. Gina

    Love the table and the rug it’s sitting on! I’m rather fond of deadlines myself, sometimes it’s the only way to get my procrastinating rear in gear. Looking around my home right now I think I better give myself a few deadlines too….

  41. Anita

    Yes, deadlines can be helpful. Thought mine usually come in the form of company coming over and not people wanting to photograph my house! Can’t wait to hear more. Loving the rug underneath. Where did that come from?

    • Melissa

      Rug is from Cost Plus World Market!!

  42. kasey

    Melissa…did you know deadline is my middle name? Well…so is wine..but when you mix the two together…then things get done.
    really. promise.
    Love the white…but you probably already knew that.
    p.s. no more scary scary people knocking on my door in the middle of the night;-)

    • Melissa

      Yay for no crazies at the door :-)

  43. lindy

    I love this dining room redo. It is super fresh looking. Well done.

  44. Tiffany

    I am with you on taking on {too} many projects at once!

    I love the table in white:) I gotta admit, it is hard for me to think of :ruining” a wood table. However, if it isn’t going to be used by someone, it may as well be me, even if it has to be a different color, right? Love it!

  45. Megan {Honey We're Home}

    The table looks so good in white. And I definitely work better under deadlines. In fact, having a blog actually helps me complete projects at home that might be put off for weeks otherwise. Even though I have no real deadline, wanting to share with by blog friends prompts me into action.

  46. heather

    I love, love, love the paint on the walls! What color is that???

  47. debbie bailey

    I, too, get several projects going at once. They seem to progress slowly toward the finish, when all of a sudden, several of them are finished at once. I do the same thing with reading books. I love it when I finish three books in one day, because I only lacked reading twenty pages in all of them.

  48. stacey a.

    I have a motto: there’s no minute like the last minute!

  49. Paula

    Thank you for the best idea ever, we remodeled our kitchen (in white) and I haven’t been able to find a white table and chairs that I like without spending a $1000.00. I am going to look at our local classifieds for a dark table for a good price and paint them. I have painted end tables and kitchen chairs for my daughter for college that I got at our local goodwill but it never crossed my mind to look for a whole set and paint them.

    By the way we have 3 major projects going on at the same time also. Building an addition to the garage, I am painting the railing and stairs on our deck, and still painting into the living room from the kitchen remodel (which still needs recessed lighting and two more cupboards on the other wall we’ve decided to put in after the remodel) and this week I’ve been weeding the flower bed that I haven’t maintained for 3 yrs…yes I think I have AADD sometimes, my husband gets mad at me sometimes that I start another project before finishing another but after 30 yrs he is use to it by now.

  50. decorating diva

    hi! yes, i do much better on a deadline- in one week i have painted TWO dressers, a nightstand, a window, a picnic basket, 2 signs {1 larger, 1 small} all because, i’m moving in to my first rented space to sell my painted objects. i love ur table, there is nothing like the satisfaction of getting something DONE! and white is timeless, classic, lovely!

  51. Missy June

    I always work better when I have a reason (ie: deadline) like a visitor coming or a party ahead – it gives me a completion date, goal, etc.

  52. Michelle Smiles

    I procrastinate until I have a deadline looming so I definitely work better with them.

  53. Richella

    Yes, ma’am, I do better with deadlines. No doubt about it. And I think your dining room looks smashing!

  54. Karen

    I pretend I have company to have a deadline…yes of course. just found your blog and am loving it.

  55. Jennifer

    Yes! I absolutely work better with a deadline to get me motivated, such as a surprise birthday party for my mother-in-law in about 3 weeks… I am toying with the idea of painting my wooden kitchen table white as well but don’t know where to begin. Do I need a primer? What type of brush do I use to get the smoothest finish? What kind of sealer should I use? Any suggestions/guidance would be greatly appreciated!!! Thank you!

  56. harriet

    I have just recently found your blog and have begun to methodically work through all your entries. I was so pleasantly surprised to find out that you’re a chuch-planter’s wife! I am too! We planted Life Community Church in Wilmington, NC, almost 7 years ago. It has been the most amazing journey ever!
    I also love home design and have worked for design firms in the past. Your blog is lovely in every way and very inspiring. We are moving into a new home next month and I need to paint some of my furniture to fall in love with it again…so I have really loved your entries on painted furniture. Thank you so much for the wonderful encouragement! May God richly bless you and your family!

  57. Tracy

    I do my best, most frantic work before the holidays-I finally decide to implement all of my bright ideas, insanely and instantly, about 2 weeks before we have a house full of company. It’s always completely stressful and hectic, but this approach has yet to yield anything less than great results! Although, I think if you asked my husband’s opinion, he’d STRONGLY disagree.

  58. lori

    I just started to paint an end table instead of throwing it away. I’m so new at this and have such limited time I hope that I do this right.
    I started using Folk Art acrylic paint. it looks okay so far, but I wonder what to use to seal it. These are very inexpensive tables made of particle wood. Any suggestions?
    Your finished work looks wonderful!

  59. Amy

    I am slowly working through your blog and I just love it. Thank you for your willingness to share it all! I am interested in knowing more about your white slipcovered furniture. What fabric do you like to use for those? They are especially charming with the pleated ruffles. And to answer your question, I am all last minute, when I am inspired I am unstoppable! :)

  60. Christine

    Thanks for the eye candy. I love your site.

  61. jeanette

    Does anyone know the diameter of the painted white round wooden table?


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