Saturday, February 9, 2013

Finishing the Tables...

Hubby and I both like books.  A lot of books.  If we like one that we've read, we don't want to part with it, so we've ended up with quite the collection.  When we purchased the home we are in now there was no one good place for them, so we decided to make one of the rooms into a library.  Fortunately for us, my father-in-law has a lifelong friend who is an expert with wood (and I don't think it's something he ever did for a living, but he sure could have if he had wanted to pursue that path).  That super kind man took the not-short drive to our house, assessed the situation and immediately got to work on creating a wall full of built-in bookshelves. Him, his friend (my f-i-l) and my husband went to Home Depot to pick up the supplies, and cut, sanded, stained, etc. well into the night.  Two days later, they were done and we couldn't have been more happy with the results.


Fast forward a few years...mm hmm, a few years, and hubby finally found the tables he wanted to put in the room (until that point we didn't have any because he didn't want to settle for the wrong tables...I wish I was kidding ;) ).  We diligently looked for tables for quite awhile, never finding what he wanted.

Out of the blue when he was at work he happened upon 'the tables' that he was looking for.  I guess he wanted something solid and chunky that wouldn't go out of style, not elegant... masculine almost, but still attractive?  Because that's what we ended up with.

The tables came home and sat around for a bit.  Last weekend he began to stain them...with the same color he used for the shelves.

Freshly coated...still wet.

They're coming along nicely, but hubby's never stained furniture before (besides the bookshelves, but he had experienced help every step along the way with those), so we're wondering what to put on top of it to help ensure it doesn't get scratched up from regular wear and tear.

We have this:

But that's it...

I cannot help but feel like we should have something more...something stronger. I'm excited because after years of looking 'unfinished' we're super close to making that room an actual place we sit and visit, relax, or even entertain.  Woot!  Does anyone have suggestions?  Proven methods?  Ideas on what we should use on top of that polyurethane?  Or maybe we shouldn't use anything at all?  Any and all advice is most welcome.  :)

66 comments:

Masshole Mommy said...

I have absolutely no tips for you because I am way to lazy to ever take on such a task myself, but the bookshelves came out awesome and I love that you found the end tables you wanted.

Jen said...

Wow all of this looks amazing!!

alissa apel said...

That all looks great! I've refinished wood before, but it's been awhile. I usually ask my dad for a list before I do it. I know the process, but I don't know the names of everything.

BethElderton said...

You don't really need anything on top of the polyurethane--that is your finishing, protective coat. Beautiful work!

Suzan Sweatman said...

Polyurethane - 2 coats - light sanding in between - that's it Rosey - they're looking great!
We love books too - the house is crammed with them - I even use them to decorate with LOL
XOX

~ Noelle said...

I have not a clue as to what to tell you...
but I will say...
LOVE LOVE LOVE the bookshelves. I would love to have built in bookshelves whenever we get a house ;)

Katie humor said...

Hey there!
Just wanted to pop over and thank you for linking up with us at our first hop! Hope you meet some new bloggers and find some great content!
Thanks again!
Katie~
http://dysfunctionsjunction.com

Jen @Marine Wife, Mommy and Life said...

:) Thanks for the Follow hunny!!! Following back! <3

mail4rosey said...

Thanks, we got lamps too... a rug and a chair and it'll be a real room. ;)

mail4rosey said...


Thanks, Jen. Slow and steady... steady and slow, lol. We'll get there. :)

mail4rosey said...


Thanks, Alissa. We've so little experience w/everything, but we're learning bit by bit. My oldest is coming home for a visit soon and he's good at everything...wish he lived closer. :)

mail4rosey said...


Thank you. I'll tell hubby, he'll get a big kick out of you saying so. :)

mail4rosey said...


They do make good decorations.

I'll tell hubby to sand and put another coat on. I'll tell him you said so, he's not a 'blog man' but I make him look at your furniture sometimes, so he'll know who I mean. :)

mail4rosey said...


Thanks, Noelle. I love them too. I will miss them if we ever move, and we might move one more time before we retire.

mail4rosey said...


Congrats on a successful hop!

mail4rosey said...


Thanks for the follow back. :)

kristi said...

The bookshelves and end tables look great. We've stained a few smaller pieces like the corner cabinet for the TV but we never finished them with polyurethane, so not sure about that. I'll bet YouTube has 1,000 videos on the subject. :) Good luck with your library. Looking forward to seeing the completed room!

mail4rosey said...


Thanks, Kristi. I'm excited to have it up and moving finally! It's really coming along.

My Journey With Candida said...

Everything is looking GREAT!! How nice of your FIL friend to help with the book shelves.

mail4rosey said...


He's a nice guy, and his friend is too. :) Thanks for stopping by.

Judy Haughton-James said...

Your library is going to look great Rosey! You are lucky to have such a talented father-in-law and your husband is doing very well too. All the very best with whatever else you have left to do.

Pat Hatt said...

That looks awesome, having your own library to chill in and read would be grand. Table looks great too, but yeah I have no idea what else, not very handy haha

Anonymous said...

I'm IMPRESSED! And yes, your poly is your finishing coat. As someone previously offered, a coat of poly., a light sanding, and another coat of poly. and your finished, yay!

Emmy said...

Very nice shelves and not really sure for advice. Kind of funny and cool that your husband had such a strong opinion.

Theresa said...

Ooooh, I am so jealous! It's my dream to have a room that I can build floor to ceiling bookshelves in. They look so awesome Rosey! I agree with the others. My hubby is handy with the wood. He built our coffee and end tables himself. The 2 coats of poly with the sanding in between is all you need.

mail4rosey said...

Thanks, Judy. It's fun to get it moving.

mail4rosey said...

Thanks, Pat. Now we need some furniture in there, besides just the couch. ;)

mail4rosey said...

Thanks, Sue. I'm glad you and Suzan mentioned the light sanding because I don't think hubby would have known to do that at that step.

mail4rosey said...

Emmy...it took some getting used to... lol. Mr. Masculine, I never would have dreamed he'd have such a strong opinion about things in the house...but he does. He surely does. ;)

mail4rosey said...

Thanks, Theresa. I think he's going to finish these today, and thanks to you guys knowing to sand, he'll be doing that too (super glad I posted because we probably wouldn't have done that).

Hilary said...

they look amazing!

mail4rosey said...

Thanks, Hilary.

Optimistic Existentialist said...

They truly do look amazing. My father works with refinishing wood I should get some tips!!

mail4rosey said...

You're lucky to have a family member who does it! Instant resources who are related are good...very GOOD. :)

Liz @ A Nut in a Nutshell said...

I'm so glad he finally spotted some. This is all pretty exciting!!!

Katherines Corner said...

oh my sweet friend I don;t have any suggestions. But I bet you could find some tips on youtube. Thank you for sharing at the hop xo

mail4rosey said...

Not as exciting as your white carpet. :) We were brave enough to put white carpet in my daughter's room when she was little. No shoes were allowed and it still ended up yukky looking...so I'm totally jealous. I love the look of white carpet.

http://www.anutinanutshell.com/2013/02/rug-doctor-carpet-cleaning-machine/

mail4rosey said...

Thanks for having me. :)

Carol L McKenna said...

Table looks fantastic ~ !
Carol of : (A Creative Harbor) ^_^

Our Neck of the Woods said...

Those shelves are AWESOME! We have so many books and sadly they're all in boxes right now because we have no bookshelves to put them on. We want to build some built-ins so bad! Yours look fabulous.

I think polyurethane should be enough on top of the stain. I'm no expert, but I think that would seal it well enough to prevent scratches and any other damage.

mail4rosey said...

Thanks, Carol. :)

mail4rosey said...

We had ours in boxes for awhile too, and when we did I missed them. ;)

Raising Reagan said...

Oh wow ... you did an amazing job! I am way too lazy for a project like that.
I love books too :)

Thank you for linking to Raising Imperfection.
Please come back Friday to see if you were featured. :)

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(¸¤ Lanaya | xoxo
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RACHEL TaoOfPoop said...

I think the book shelves look awesome! You are going to have a lovely room and lovely place for all your books!

mail4rosey said...

I'm glad books have a good following still...I like an e-book here and there, but the paper kind is my fave. :)

mail4rosey said...

Thank you, Rachel!

Kaz @ Melting Moments said...

You've done a great job. Our book shelf is so overcrowded. Time to do a cull I think :) Thanks for dropping by at www.meltingmoments.info

mail4rosey said...

Thanks for stopping back. :)

Leslie @ Violet Imperfection said...

I am so jealous! Someday I will have bookshelves like that in a room of my house. I would love a library room. I hate parting with books, I have boxes of books at my house, my parents and my inlaws. :)

Thanks for sharing your favorite post at Raising Imperfection! We feature our favorites on Friday, make sure to come back and check.
Leslie
www.violetimperfection.com

Anonymous said...


Hi!
You're going to have a wonderful Library!
Love the color of the stain too.
Pat

Mel@Mellywood's Mansion said...

That looks amazing, go hubby! I'd love to have a wall of built ins

Susie @ french-knitting.com said...

WOW thats amazing! Thanks for visiting my site today. I love your book shelves, they are GRAND!

Laurie Collett said...

A girl after my own heart! Books and bookshelves are two of my favorite things! Your built-ins look awesome and will hold so many books!
God bless,
Laurie

Joyce Lansky said...

That will be a wonderful place to get work done. Good for you and your husband for taking the initiative to make the room fabulous!

http://joycelansky.blogspot.com

Colette S said...

I wish I could help you dahlin, but I have bookcase envy!

I think those are the most darling gifts ever! What a wonderful man your father has!

I would love to see the finished room in it's glory! So excited for you!

We have so many books for the same reason and that is my aim to have wall to wall bookcases :)

mail4rosey said...

Hurray another book fan, I'm loving this! I thought I was turning into a dinosaur preferring the tangible copy over the e-reader selections. :)

mail4rosey said...

Thanks, Patricia. Hubby picked that too, lol, but I like it quite a bit. :)

mail4rosey said...

Thanks, Mel. :)

mail4rosey said...

Thanks for visiting back, Susie. :)

mail4rosey said...

Thanks, Laurie. You know they're filled to capacity with some placed on top of those standing up, lol. And we did put some aside to donate, but they're still full. We're def. book lovers over here too. Thanks for stopping by. :)

mail4rosey said...

Thanks, Joyce. It will be nice to have that room finished.

mail4rosey said...

I like where we live (except the cold weather) but if we moved I would survive...those bookcases though, I'd miss them. And the yard. :)

Carla said...

Those look great!

I always tell my husband that if he gets a big garage with room to work at our next house, I get a library/craft room. :)

Judy Haughton-James said...

Hi again Rosey!
Thanks a lot for linking up with Creative Monday. Have a good day.
Judy

mail4rosey said...

Sounds like a fair deal to me. ;)

mail4rosey said...

Thanks for hosting, Judy.

http://judyh-jsthoughts.blogspot.com/2013/02/gizzadas-creative-monday-linky.html