From existing table to farm table

December 2, 2015

Hi! I'm Nicole

Fearless DIY. Sharing building project tutorials and interior design tips. Let’s build something beautiful together. For more projects, design tips and behind the scenes, follow me @designtobuild.nicole

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It was last year, at about this time, that I decided to do something very bold in my DIY project venture. As I do with a lot of my renovations I take on, I decided one morning I just needed to take the plunge.

I had been doing some research on what I wanted in a dining room table. But I knew I did not want to spend an exorbitant amount of money on a brand new table. So it was, once again, Pinterest to the rescue. I saw several pins where people would completely transform their existing table and make it look like one straight out of Restoration Hardware or Pottery Barn, etc. without breaking the bank to do so.

My first step was a bit intimidating and extremely loud…I took a hammer and a crowbar to my existing tile tabletop and proceeded to break each individual tile…

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After removing each tile, I was left with a wood surface to work with. I wish I would have taken a picture of this. 🙁

After completing the demo of my tabletop, I made a trip to Home Depot for my supplies…

7- 2×8’s pine wood

3- 1×2’s pine wood

long shims

12- 12 x 1 & 1/8″ metal bars

Back at home, I cut my planks to the length of my table. Then placed my shims across the width of the table every 8 inches (approximately)…

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My planks then were placed lengthwise on top of the shims. The shims were used to make sure my boards were all level with one another…

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I screwed my boards in from underneath the table. If anyone were to look under the table, they would see a slew of screws that did not get completely sunk. This was early in my building attempts and I had not yet mastered the art of sinking my screws. It’s a little dangerous to crawl under the table. 🙂 Not really…It looks more treacherous than what it actually is. No person or 4-legged creature has been hurt yet. 🙂


Yep, those are all heads of screws sticking out. But who really looks under the table????

I wanted my table to be as close to 7 feet long as possible, so I had to add length on both ends. This worked out great, because I wanted to cap the ends with 2×8’s going the opposite direction…

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In order to add these boards I used metal bars for reinforcement (6 on each end). These bars add so much support to the table. You can lean all your weight on the ends of the table and it doesn’t budge. It. Is. Solid!!!

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Next came the sanding (my least favorite step in any project).

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After that was finished I let my kids go to town with hammers and pound the daylights out of the planks. They loved helping out on this project. 🙂 Especially with using pine wood, I wanted a distressed look. This way it already looks beat up and any extra dents/scratches, I won’t freak out about. Saves me a little bit of stress and my kids from “crazy-mom.”

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The building of my table TOP was now complete. But I needed to figure out how to conceal the fact that I had built on top of an existing table. At this point it was quite obvious. After trying a few different approaches, I finally found one that worked and looked really good. This was where the 1×2’s came into play. I used these to build an apron around the table….covering up the gap between the existing table and the newly added planks…

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Hard to see that apron under the planks. Here’s a couple better pictures taken from today…


And one more at the head of the table…


I loved the look of this and was very pleased with how it turned out. My farm table was coming together.

The last step was the most fun step…staining the top (I used a dark gel stain)…

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and painting the legs (I used a tan chalk paint as my base and then waxed it–giving it a white distressed look).

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I finally had my farm table that I had wanted for a very long time. And I love that it didn’t cost me a fortune to get it. I love even more that we can fit so many people around it comfortably. We often pull a bench up to accommodate for even more people. And with a big family, that’s pretty much all the time.

The dining room table is probably one of the most treasured pieces of furniture at this time of year. So many family conversations and memories being made. 🙂

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Let me know if you have any questions about this project. It really is a simple one that adds so much value to your family get-togethers. 🙂





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