Our dining room table: a makeover

A new dining room table

A few years back my Mum kindly swapped her dining room table with us. Meaning that we then owned a large country cottage wooden table which perfectly suited our 1900 cottage.

We picked up some chairs from a second hand shop and gave them some TLC with some new covers.

But since the house move over 6 months ago (to a new-build) I have felt as though our older style dining suite no longer suited our modern home. I therefore wanted something a little more contemporary, in keeping with the style of the house.

Older country style dining room set

So we painted it grey – using Homebase chalk paint – a tin of Rust-oleum (in Anthracite). The same grey colour that we used to paint the living room furniture a few months ago.

Paint - chalk paint for the dining roomMakeover - dining room tableA makeover - dining room table

The dining table needed two coats of the paint and it covered well. Then yesterday I varnished the top because every time I wiped the table with a wet cloth paint came off! I gave it two generous coats and it was dry by this morning.

I can now wipe the top from spills and it nicely protects the paintwork.

Upcycle - makeover for a dining room table

I sold the old chairs through eBay and we bought some new contemporary style ones from IKEA. I wanted modern white chairs that were also practical too. These ones are amazing – as they wipe clean (aka kid-friendly), are super modern and yet were only £35 each!

Upcycle - changing a dining room table

I am delighted with the makeover and we have saved a lot of money by up-cycling the table and adding new chairs, rather than buying a brand new set.

Our kitchen-diner in our new family home has plenty of space for the table and six chairs. Which means that we can sit around the table and all have our dinner together as a family. Plus the twins sit at the table too, and draw and paint, whilst I prepare food and I can chat to them and watch them safely.

It is such a key piece of furniture for our family home.

New dining room table - painting using chalk paints

Love, Jess x



  1. April 3, 2016 / 7:52 pm

    Wow wow WOW! What a transformation and such a gorgeous colour. Looks just amazing well done 🙂

    • April 3, 2016 / 8:18 pm

      Thanks! Good old chalk paint!! xx

  2. April 3, 2016 / 8:43 pm

    I love it! I thought it was a brand new table when I first saw the photos! And the chairs are a bargain, they look so stylish xx

  3. Kara
    April 3, 2016 / 8:50 pm

    Love love love. It looks fab. It’s a gorgeous colour.
    Love the canvas on the wall too. What an amazing burst of colour xx

  4. April 3, 2016 / 8:53 pm

    Very inspiring Jess. I recently inherited a wooden country style table and chairs that I want to up cycle. Love the transformation!
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  5. April 3, 2016 / 9:02 pm

    Wow! It looks amazing! I would never think to upcycle like this! x

    • April 3, 2016 / 9:34 pm

      Thanks lovely – although once you start you can’t stop ha ha!! xx

  6. April 4, 2016 / 8:00 am

    That looks fantastic. I think upcycling is the way forward! I spent yesterday painting one of our walls in the kitchen to make it a magnetic chalk board and I am so pleased as I saved so much money compared to going out and buying one of a simliar size.

    You must be so happy with your table, it really looks lovely in the grey too 🙂

  7. April 4, 2016 / 8:29 am

    Fantastic! We are still eeking a few more years out of our oak table, which is chunky and contemporary, so it still pulls it off…but I know there will come a time when I’ll have to tackle this! xx
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  8. April 4, 2016 / 9:34 am

    Wow, your table looks great, and really fits with your new build style now Jess – well done! I love a bit of upcycling xxx

    • April 4, 2016 / 2:22 pm

      Ahhh thanks very much xx

  9. April 4, 2016 / 10:16 pm

    I can’t believe you have made a pine table look so lovely and modern. Amazing job and I love the chairs! x
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    • April 5, 2016 / 11:42 am

      Thanks lovely xx

  10. April 6, 2016 / 9:34 am

    That looks fantastic, I did wonder what happens when you wipe the table down…then you said you varnished it! Great idea!

  11. April 6, 2016 / 9:49 am

    I really love the look of this table. You’ve done such a great job. It changes the whole space and everything just works perfectly together X #homeetc
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  12. April 6, 2016 / 10:29 am

    What a difference! I do love a good chalk paint job – the grey is lovely!

    This does remind me of a job we have outstanding though – we got a lovely glass fronted cabinet from Ikea 2 years ago that was red which I didn’t like, but I loved the cabinet. I painted it – not with chalk paint, with primer and then two coats of normal paint. It didn’t bond. Not at all – the sheen of the Ikea stuff had stopped it. So my husband has spent the last two summers stripping off the paint from every single piece that I painted (it’s still in flat pack form – we’ve never put it together!). I’ve since learned about the wonders of chalk paint…
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  13. April 6, 2016 / 12:09 pm

    OH my word, what a huge difference! I love that colourful floral picture on the back wall.

    – Cydney

  14. April 6, 2016 / 12:15 pm

    That looks amazing! You have inspired me, Our dining table is about 20 years old, it was my nans, and when we first started using it 4 years ago I loved it, but it is well past its best and I am longing for a new one. x
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    • April 6, 2016 / 6:58 pm

      I know! This one was so loved previously but the pine wasn’t working in our home! Good luck xx
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    • April 6, 2016 / 4:17 pm

      Yay for grey – love it so much xx

  15. April 6, 2016 / 2:27 pm

    I love that. It’s a real mix of modern and traditional with the twist of the paint! Fab job.
    I’ve never used chalk paint although I’ve heard lots of people rave about it. My dining table needs some work, perhaps I will be inspired!

    Although given how long it takes me to get round to doing something, I’ll still be talking about this in 5 years time!

    • April 6, 2016 / 4:16 pm

      Ahhh thanks, once you start you get very addicted! xx

  16. Louisa
    April 6, 2016 / 2:43 pm

    I love the colour you have chosen. It looks very sophisticated and will coordinate with most other colours. We’ve got a huge wood table begging for a makeover and I hadn’t considered coloured paint as an option but I certainly will now.

    • April 6, 2016 / 4:16 pm

      Thanks! So pleased with it 🙂 xx

  17. April 6, 2016 / 7:39 pm

    I’ve been literally planning to do this with ours for ages — the table and chairs are a revolting shade of cream and I want to paint them white…. I just can’t quite pluck up the enthusiasm to do it though!!!! A large table and 8 dining chairs is literally going to kill me. Maybe I should organise and AAOB painting party?! 😉 #HomeEtc
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    • April 7, 2016 / 1:01 pm

      Ha sounds fab!!!!! I’m in xx

  18. April 6, 2016 / 9:36 pm

    I would have never have guessed you’d upcycled the table from the photos you posted on Twitter! It’s so easy to forget the effect a paint job can have on some furniture 🙂

  19. April 6, 2016 / 9:51 pm

    Jess it looks incredible and literally transforms your dining area, I hate our table but I dont think we could paint it, I want an old oak tree table thats a great instagram surface ha ha, I love you chairs I have seen some black ones similar but with crossy legs xx
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    • April 7, 2016 / 1:00 pm

      Ha Instagram photos are important I agree!!!! xx

  20. April 6, 2016 / 10:00 pm

    The whole room looks lovely, like a breath of Spring air, and what a fabulous job you’ve done with the table – in its previous state I’d never have thought you could make it work in a contemporary home such as yours, but you have, amazing!
    Molly recently posted…Bathroom Refresh with Soak&SleepMy Profile

  21. April 7, 2016 / 7:58 am

    This looks fabulous – such a transformation! I am eager to paint some of our brown furniture with chalk paint and this has definitely inspired me even more x #HomeEtc
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    • April 7, 2016 / 1:00 pm

      Thanks!! Love a makeover project!

  22. April 9, 2016 / 2:48 pm

    Omg the transformation is amazing! what a difference it made! Your kitchen looks very Scandinavian i must say! Good work!

  23. April 11, 2016 / 9:27 am

    Fab job Jess. Good to know that table needed a varnish. With kids the tabel needs wiping SO often. The modern chairs go really well with the grey too. #homeetc

  24. April 12, 2016 / 11:12 am

    I think the table looks much better now. I really want to give chalk paint a go so need a little project to try it.
    I love the chairs too, they give it a contemporary look
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  25. June 20, 2016 / 9:51 pm

    I just saw this post! I absolutely love it and the chairs look perfect with it! I’m always a little worried about painting things in case I manage to mess it up (I’m very clumsy!) but it goes to show it’s worth the risk 🙂
    Pia recently posted…GARDEN DECORMy Profile

    • June 20, 2016 / 10:17 pm


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