Refinish Kitchen Table in Farmhouse Style

After renovating my kitchen cabinets and living room in a rustic french country farmhouse style, I needed to refinish my kitchen table to match. The red in the wood stain did not flow with the cooler shades and natural wood tones in the surrounding living spaces.

Refinish kitchen table to look like farmhouse table
Kitchen Table – Before
Refinish table in farmhouse style
Kitchen Table – After

Materials Used:

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  1. Sand: Using belt sander and 50 grit sandpaper, sand table down to bare wood.
    Refinish table in farmhouse style
    Sand Table

    Always work in the direction of the grain. Try to do the edges as best as possible but it can look “rough” since we are going for a farmhouse look. Then, use 120 and 220 sandpaper to smooth. (I recommend doing this outside or in a garage.) Don’t forget your dust mask!

    Refinish table in farmhouse style
    After Sanding
  2. Stain: Clean table with a damp rag to remove dust and lift wood grain. (You may choose to use Pre-Stain Wood Conditioner for a more even stain application. I did not use it for this project.) Apply stains using chip brushes and massaging into wood with rags. Again, always work in the direction of the grain. I used the driftwood stain first and simply brushed it on in a few separate lines, blending into wood with rag. It is important to begin with light stain and work your way darker as you cannot go lighter after applying dark stain (without having to sand again). After the driftwood, I applied the jacobean to most other areas in the same manner (avoiding the lines of driftwood). I left a few areas of bare wood for contrast. There is no specific method except that I tried to blend the different sections until it looked a little more natural. Let dry (approximately 30 minutes to 1 hour).

    Refinish table in farmhouse style
    Stain Wood
  3. Whitewash Wood: To lighten the look slightly and add to the farmhouse style, I applied a diluted whitewash. Mix 1 part water to 1 part white latex paint (see in materials list above). Apply on table with brush and wipe off with rag (always wipe in same direction as grain). I did this in sections, as I didn’t want the whitewash on the wood long. If it seems like the wood is absorbing too much white paint, use a damp rag to wipe off instead of a dry one. Test your whitewash first in an area that isn’t very noticeable. Adjust water/paint ratios if needed. Let table fully dry. (I let it dry overnight.)

    Refinish table in farmhouse style
    After Whitewash
  4. Finish: After table has dried completely, apply 3-4 coats of finish with a quality brush (I always use Purdy). I spent days researching which finish would provide the best protection, clear color, etc. Eventually, I decided to use the water-based Varathane I had on hand. The main reason: I did not want a yellow tint added to the wood. Be sure to gently sand between each coat with 220 grit sandpaper. Do not sand final coat.


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