I tend to collect memories--treasures to me (junk to someone else?). When we were first married, my husband saw 'old stuff', but I saw the coffee table my mom started housekeeping with and the Singer sewing machine that belonged to my grandmother (he is adjusting nicely). I didn't want to restore them to original condition, but I did want to give them a purpose again.
I attached the coffee table top (the legs disappeared during a move) to the machine base with bolts recessed into the wood. I was planning to cover over it with tile, so I didn't worry about marring the surface. If you wanted to refinish the surface, you would need to plan on attaching from underneath, which might require fortifying the underside with additional wood.
I sanded the wooden top and applied two colors of stain around the sides--oak and walnut--to highlight some of the details of the table, sanding lightly between each coat per the instructions on the can of stain. This is a personal preference and would depend on the design of your table. Mine was solid wood and took the sanding and stain quite well and had raised details I wanted to highlight. You might rather paint than stain, but again, that is personal preference. I cleaned the metal base thoroughly and left it unpainted because i liked the rusty patina, and sprayed on a couple of coats of clear polyurethane.
The mosaic tiles came as 12" by 12" tiles on a fiber mesh backing that I purchased individually from my local home and garden store. I bought 5 tiles at about $4 each. I got out my trusty tile book and read up on how to install glass tiles. I bought pre-mixed grout and white tile mastic in small containers, about a quart of each, and applied the tiles just as they came, trimming a few squares off one edge so it would fit neatly on the table top. You might have to use the powdered grout, and mix with water, to get the color that you want for your tile. The pre-mixed grout I bought was sanded. If I had it to do over, I would use unsanded grout, but all I could find at the time was in really big bags, so I took my chances on the one quart of sanded grout. I used a white mastic because some of my tiles were very light colored and somewhat translucent and chose a grout color that complemented the light colors in my tile.
This project took a couple of days because of drying time between coats of stain, mastic and grout. It is important not to rush that, so give yourself ample time and place it in a corner somewhere that it is protected from blowing wind and bugs until it is finished.
The table now sits in the entryway of my house and I have to say I am quite pleased with it. I think of my mom and grandmother every time I look at it. I think I will try something more complicated for my next mosaic project, if I can find just the right memory to recycle.
Hi there! I am Jeannine.
I believe that a holistic and balanced approach to life is a must when living with an autoimmune disease. I share gluten and dairy free recipes and all the other things I do here. I just like doing stuff and making stuff.
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