I felt a wave of excitement when this beautiful table makeover landed in my inbox. I’m not a woodworking expert, but I am always looking to try out new techniques. I’m absolutely determined to make myself something using Sarah’s awesome herringbone design. Sarah Summers and her father, a self-taught carpenter, worked together to modify an old door into a custom table that will last for years. They managed to put the whole piece together for around $150, which is impressive for any kind of large dining table, but for a table that looks this good? Wowza. Great job, team Sarah! — Kate
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Read more about Sarah’s herringbone wood table after the jump!
Time: 2 weekends
Basic Steps: I recently finished graduate school and moved away from 6 years of college living. The one piece of furniture I never seemed to acquire was a dining table. So, when it came time for me to find one, I knew I wanted something special. I hunted yard sales, antique stores and fleas, but never quite found what I wanted at the right price. So I was delighted when my dad, an amazingly skilled and self-taught carpenter, offered to help me build one. The design was collaborative between the two of us, as was the construction — but I must admit, this was no novice project. Without his direction (and shop full of tools), I would have been one lost woodworking soul.
In order to keep costs down and be as eco-friendly as possible, we tried to get creative and use re-purposed materials for the table. The base for the table top is actually an old oak door that was purchased for $30 at the Habitat for Humanity ReStore. We cut the door down to the size we wanted and gave it a light sanding. Then we started laying the herringbone pattern; this idea [was] spurred from boxes and boxes of ash wood strips that my dad found while cleaning out a friend’s wood shop. Thinking they’d make a great table top, he saved them and we sketched out the design. Each strip was individually placed with glue and an air pin gun (this took almost a whole day!). We then trimmed the excess off the edges and used a belt sander on the top. We also paid to run the table top through an industrial sander ($25) to ensure it was completely even. Final steps on the table top included filling gaps, as the strips didn’t always fit together perfectly, and using an orbital sander to get it silky smooth.