July 2, 2010

Craftsman Style Coffee Table - Done!

So back in February I decided that I would take a break from remodeling projects for a weekend or two and build a coffee table. Well I clearly underestimated how long it would take but 5 months later it is finally done. Take a look...

Being a larger surface I had a bit of trouble getting an even finish with the polyurethane on the top so I ended up sanding an re-coating a few extra times to get an even finish. All in all it took 3 coats of glossed thinned about 15% with mineral spirits followed by two thin coats of satin. After the final coat dried I attached the top to the frame with the button blocks and called it done.

Here it is side by side with the old table:

It is definitely and improvement and all in all I think it turned out great for my first piece of furniture. My only real regret is that I'm not entirely thrilled with the look of the full thickness polyurethane finish since it makes the wood look and feel a bit un-natural and plastic. I'll probably try out some alternative finishes next time to get a more natural look and feel. The other lesson I learned was to sort through the lumber and pull out the best pieces for the top and shelf panels first and then use the rest for the less visible frame. Lessons learned.