Dustin’s DIY: Coffee Table Do-Over

From outdated and drab to a handmade statement in your living room

By Dustin Bates

Habitat Kansas City ReStore recently had these decades-old coffee tables for sale. I snagged one because beneath all that honey stain, rounded edges and grime, I knew it still had some life left in it.












First, I sanded down the top, removing the old stain. You could use a stripping agent, but the finish was so thin and worn down, a quick sanding did the trick. Then, I cut off about 2in. all the way around the top and ran a router around the edge.







Next, I built a new base with a much more modern aesthetic out of 2x4s. Instead of filling the holes to make it flush, I used wood plugs and let them stick out. After adding a coat of black spray paint, the plugs add some nice texture to the base. You could buy a new coffee table for $100, or you could pick one up like this, add $10 worth of wood to the base and have a project piece you can brag about. You can’t argue with that wood grain!




Dustin’s DIY is sponsored by Habitat for Humanity Kansas City Restore.

Dustin started Varsity Construction after graduating college in 2005. He builds new construction and remodels homes. He also builds small furniture pieces in his spare time. If you have a DIY construction project you’d like him to discuss, send it to erin@vintagekcmag.com.