| | |

Give Your Dark Side Table a Light Update

Spread the love

Do you have a piece of furniture that is just a little dated-looking or that you might just want to change a bit? This dark side table makeover is super simple! Let’s learn how to give your dark side table a light update!


Hey, friends and My Wee Abode fam!

You know, I don’t say it enough here, so I’m going to say it today!

Thank you SO much for being such a BIG part of the blog! Creating solutions, tips and tricks, etc., is wonderful, and I love it. But, having you visit the blog, implementing the ideas that are shared, and commenting makes this blog all worth it! You rock, and THANK YOU!!!

Now, let’s get to this makeover, shall we?!

light gray sidetable with books and decor

During my summer tour, I alluded that a dark side table makeover was in the works. The dark (orange-y) wood tone along with the black metal legs just didn’t go with the rest of my decor.

give your dark side table a light update dark table with books and floral arrangement

How Can I Modify an Old Table?

Now, the table wasn’t awful. It would go well in a home with lots of rich-colored woods and warm tones. However, My Wee Abode has more of a ‘lighter’ and ‘airier’ feel to it (at least I hope it does)! (A new sofa is on the horizon, as well. Can you guess what colors I’m looking at?)

Also, the table is perfect for my mom. Mom has dementia and needs a larger table to store her Bible, devotionals, activity books and other items.

And if you’re thinkin’, “I bet that table doesn’t look that neat every day”, you’d be right!

So, instead of replacing the table, updating it was the answer!

light gray sidetable with books and decor

You can modify a table in different ways:

  • Paint it
  • Sand it down to the natural wood and seal it
  • After sanding, you can stain it a different color
  • Use a stencil to add some interest
  • You can even add decals to give it a complete new look!

This post may contain affiliate links, at no additional cost to you. For more information, see my complete disclosure HERE.

BTW… If you are looking to purchase a new side table instead of updating a current one, here are some nursery side table ideas that just might work in any bedroom or living area! (And, if you’re looking for a nursery side table, you may just want some ideas for things to do on maternity leave!)

Plus, if you want to peruse different stores and get some great ideas for furniture and other items, take a look at this list of free catalogs!

How Do You Lighten a Dark Table?

A lighter version of the table was my goal, so I opted for paint.

It was SUPER easy!

Items for a Dark Side Table Makeover

To makeover your side table with the same look as mine, this is what you will need:

How To Give Your Dark Side Table a Light Update

Now, before I go on, let me apologize…

Because when you (you, meaning ME) try to take ALL the photos for the first time with only your iPhone, then forget to sync to Google One before you delete the photos from your phone, well… you lose half of the tutorial photos!

Shame on you! 😛

So… the first half of this tutorial will be missing the photos. And they were such GOOD photos! Hopefully, I won’t make that mistake again!

Prep and Paint the Tabletop

  • First, if you can, disassemble the table (remove the legs from the table top).
  • Next, if your table has a finish on it already, wash down the table top (and the legs) with mild detergent and warm water. Be sure to wipe them down with clear water, too.
  • After the table top is dry, you can simply apply the chalk paint with one of your wonderful Zibra paint brushes. Let the paint dry completely.
  • When the first coat is dry, sand the table top with 220 grit sand paper and then wipe down with your wiping cloths. Using damp cloths works best.
  • Repeat the last two steps. Don’t worry if the original finish peeks through. This actually adds texture and interest to the table!

Prep and Paint the Table Legs

While the table is waiting for the wax coating, you can paint the table legs.

Give Your Dark Side Table a Light Update steps to paint legs
  • If the table legs are dark, like mine were, take them outside and spray with three light, even coats of ColorShot Satin spray paint. Let each coat dry thoroughly, and then let dry overnight.
  • Using your choice of acrylic paint and a larger paint brush, with a light hand paint the table legs with 1-2 coats, waiting for each coat to dry thoroughly before doing the next. Be sure to spread the paint evenly. This will give the legs a metallic look.
  • Let dry overnight. (I didn’t even seal these.)

How to Use Creme Wax as a Sealer

Sealing the table top with creme wax is super easy. AND, it’s really fun to see the difference it makes!

steps to add wax sealer to a table
Look at the difference that wax makes! Gives another dimension to the table.
  • Take a CLEAN wiping cloth and dab it into the creme wax. Wipe it onto and into the table, going with the grain of the table, leaving extra in the cracks and crevices. Let dry to touch (usually take about 30-60 minutes to dry).
  • After the wax is dry, take another clean, dry wiping cloth and buff to desired sheen.

Re-assemble your table and admire the update!

Results of a Dark Side Table Makeover

Let’s take a look back at how this dark end table started, shall we?

give your dark side table a light update dark table with books and floral arrangement
I actually had TWO table tops to paint!
give your dark side table a light update dark table with books and floral arrangement and starfish
That orange-tone just didn’t cut it for My Wee Abode. 😉

Look how much happier it looks!

light gray sidetable with books and decor

When you sand the table, leave the original stain peeking through…

give your dark side table a light update finished side table with distress
I love how the nail holes still show, too!

And the wax that is left in the nicks and woodgrain give the table some added depth, as well.

gray table top with book

Some of my summer decor is still up, but will be put away today. Getting ready for the fall!

light gray sidetable with books and decor

This large wooden chain was a fun purchase from Hobby Lobby. You can find LOTS of different ones on Amazon, too!

give your dark side table a light update gray table with wooden chain link and summer decor

The legs of the table came out nice, but I may paint them just a bit darker. What do you think?

closeup of side table legs in silver

Is a furniture makeover on the horizon for your home? Be sure to sync those photos this time! 😉

signature updated 2022

Similar Posts


    1. Are you talking about the table in the sunroom? I think the black looks great! I like how it ‘grounds’ the room. I MAY paint the legs a BIT darker. We’ll see after the new sofa comes!!!! Woot! 😉

  1. It’s a year later than your pics – September 2023 – and from following your weekly posts, I know you have moved and have your new sofa. I always enjoy seeing your cute “wee abode” and its light airy feel. I, too, live very small but I’m in New England with real season swings so that décor doesn’t always fit for me. Nonetheless, I get inspiration from you and adapt where I can. Your color scheme for example. The same but just darker hues of greens and blues. Living small is a challenge but with a lot of creativity, it’s a process, isn’t it? But…works for me!

    1. Hi, Muriel! Thanks for leaving such a lovely comment! Yes, living small is a challenge, but I love it! And I’m SO glad you are inspired by My Wee Abode! That’s what it’s here for!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.