Thursday, May 8, 2014

DIY painted stump tables

So I'm normally a huge fan of Anthropologie. I think I could actually live happily right inside one of their stores and have everything I would ever need. I'd spend the morning eating an organic breakfast off of my tribal-print dishes and drinking coffee out of my monogram mug and orange juice out of my lovely gold embellished glasses. Then I'd spent the day fluffing my embroidered tassel pillows, drinking tea from my Moroccan tea set, and doing my impossibly stylish laundry, if I had time. At the end of the day, I'd curl up on top of my tufted vintage sofa underneath my bohemian-print duvet with a pretty coffee table book while surrounded by 100 scented jar candles. Sounds perfect.

And usually the pieces you see in Anthro are so special and unique that you can kind of justify the price tag, but even I couldn't wrap my head around the price of these reclaimed wood side tables going for almost $400.

So Anthropologie, please forgive me while I recreate those tables for $0. I'm still obsessed with you, I promise.
Here's what you need:
- Paint
- Polyurethane
- Brushes
- Scavenged stumps

And here's how to make them:

1. Find your stumps!
This could actually be the hardest part of the project unless you want to go all Paul Bunyon and cut down a tree. We had been (unsuccessfully) looking for stumps for a while before the trip we took to Grande Isle, Vermont a couple of weekends ago for Easter. I mentioned my stump hunt to one of josh's family friends while we were at their house for an Easter egg hunt, and after explaining my crazy idea and showing them a few pictures, they pointed me in the direction of their backyard woodpile which I eagerly walked sprinted to. And there I found a pair of perfect stumps. Oh Vermont, thanks for always having such great salvaged wood.
2. Sand.
If your stumps still have bark on them, you'll have to scrape all of that off before this step. Luckily our stumps were already barkless, aged and dry, so we just gave them a light sanding to smooth them out a bit. Make sure to wipe the stumps off with a damp wash cloth to remove all the dust before painting.
3. Paint & Polyurethane. 
You don't need to worry about using painters tape since these are supposed to look "dip dyed." I just used regular white wall paint that we already had to paint the bottom half of the stumps - not minding if my lines were a little uneven. Once the paint has dried, apply a couple generous coats of polyurethane to seal the stumps. Let it seep into all those cracks!
4. Put them to use!
We are using one stump as our new outdoor end table on our patio and one has become a bedside table in our guest bedroom. I might have to put them back together soon though, they look so good as a pair!
^PS, we made that planter in our pottery class! :)
And that's it! $400 saved. Or does that mean I get to spend $400 at Anthropologie now? Hmmm...


  1. They look great, especially with that matching pot! You need another one for the patio :)

  2. Love love love. Also cracked up over your dream of living in anthro. Let me know when you move in, I'll drop everything and we can be roomies :-)

  3. Make sure the zone where the tree drops is level so the tree does not roll or bob after it falls. tree removal brampton