Farmhouse Table and Bench
After moving 5 times in the past two years, I have downsized a lot! In some ways its nice! Less stuff to keep up with and manage, less clothes to wash, less stress and more peace. Yet after moving into our new house, I decided I am ready to get some solid furniture. After looking around at furniture stores, yard sales, and online craigslist place for a few months, I decided the styles I was looking for were not being sold cheap second hand and would be very expensive to buy new. And somehow I convinced my husband to build a farmhouse table and bench for our kitchen.
We are not very good at wood working (although my husband is feeling much more confident these days). But I realized I had downsized to the point where I didn’t feel like we could fully function as a family. I couldn’t fully unpack because I didn’t have bookshelves to put books on. My family stopped really talking to each other at meals because we were split between sitting at the counter and the small square folding table we used as undergrads. After complaining enough, pointing out how much cheaper the wood for a table is than buying a table, and finding plans from Ana White for a farmhouse table and bench, I convinced my husband to take on the project.
These pieces are solid! They are stinking heavy and the table actually gave me bruises when we carried it into the house. I love the thick legs and the simple solid lines! It’s pretty much everything I wanted, except the finishing. Hubby was in charge of building (although I helped!) and I was responsible for staining and painting. I’m super indecisive and awful at decorating. I knew I wanted a gray stain, but couldn’t find the right gray stain for what I was imagining. I tried several colors from several brands, mixed colors, tried coats and watering down but the finished product still ended up more opaque than I wanted. It’s hard to see the wood grain.
Plus, I couldn’t decide if I wanted to paint or stain the legs! After the table top didn’t come out the way I wanted I decided to just paint the legs.
However, when it came time to stain the bench I just put the Carbon Gray stain on right after the wood conditioner and I got the effect I was looking for! So now I want to refinish the table in all one stain to match the bench. But not for a while. Because I’ve got the hubby making a bunch more stuff. And I’m enjoying the table too much right now to go back to a folding table while I refinish it.
One unanticipated problem we ran into is that the bench is too wide to slide under the table. The table and bench plans are meant to go together and I’ve double checked the finished measurements, but the bench just doesn’t slide between the two legs! Luckily my kids are small and it doesn’t bother them too much, but its still disappointing after all the effort making these were.