Chalk Paint Dining Table Makeover

So every now and then I get a wild hair to move things around and completely re-do the entire house. My mom says this started when I was about 10 years old and she’d find me rearranging all the furniture in my room on a regular basis. And then I’d do the living room. I can still remember her and my dad telling me not to try moving furniture alone because I’d hurt myself. Weird? Possibly. But I’d say that’s just a girl who knew the value of freshening things up from time to time, which explains why my home now is always evolving and changing. And maybe why I’m addicted to DIY projects. So it probably won’t surprise you that I’m back today with a little breakfast nook makeover. Well, actually it’s just a new dining table makeover, but it really feels like this space has new life with this swap.

Here’s how the space looked before with my old table:

Farmhouse Breakfast Nook

Ok, let me be honest. I never liked this table. It’s cute, yes, but I wasn’t crazy about it. It just didn’t seem to fit. And for the past few months I’ve been itching to make a change. So when I saw my cousin selling an antique oak pedastal table at her yard sale last weekend, I knew the time had come! Here’s the before.


This is exactly what I envisioned for our breakfast nook all along: an antique claw foot table. This baby is old and heavy. And it turns out this has been in our family for years, which always makes me happy.

Here’s the after with a little paint job:

Breakfast Nook and Painted Antique Dining Table

You guys, I adore how this turned out. We had to clean it up a bit, sand down a few spots here and there, but other than that it was in great shape. I really, really wanted to paint the entire thing white. Shocker, I know. But I decided to resist that urge for once and go with a bit of color. Here’e exactly what I used:

Dining Room Table makeover supplies

I used Annie Sloan chalk paint in Pure White on the top of the table and Paris Grey on the bottom (2 coats of each). Instead of using the Annie Sloan clear wax to seal the top of the table I tried out this clear Polycrylic protective finish. I honestly haven’t been loving the Annie Sloan wax finish on my vanities in our bathroom. It just doesn’t seal and protect from water damage like I was hoping. So we decided to try this instead and it actually worked just fine with the chalk paint.

DIY Chalk Painted Farmhouse Style Table

DIY Chalk Painted Farmhouse Style Table

DIY Chalk Painted Farmhouse Style Table

DIY Chalk Painted Farmhouse Style Table

The little scrolling is my favorite part of the table. And I couldn’t help myself. I had to distress just a smidge to accentuate those details.

DIY Chalk Painted Farmhouse Style Table

This purdy bench cushion is from Pier 1. It’s perfect in this spot, but I’ll be honest–it’s never here at meal time. Ever. Because white cushions and kids don’t go well together.

DIY Chalk Painted Antique Dining Table

I was happily surprised to see how well these chairs, which were a free find on Craigslist, match the table with that scrolling and detail on the side. I love when that happens!

Farmhouse Style Breakfast Nook and Antique Table
DIY Chalk Painted Farmhouse Style Dining Table

DIY Chalk Painted Antique Dining Table Breakfast Nook

DIY Chalk Painted Farmhouse Style Table

Honestly, this is my favorite kind of DIY. I love taking an old piece of furniture and breathing new life into it with a bit of paint and TLC. And although my husband thought I was a little crazy to replace our perfectly good table, even he is loving this change. It just seems to fit so much better with our home. Plus I already sold the other table, which means it literally cost me nothing to freshen this space up. That’s winning my friends. So that’s my chalk paint table makeover. Let me know what you think and be sure to track me down on all those social media things. Instagram. Facebook. Pinterest.

Dining Room Table Farmhouse Makeover

Leave a Comment


  1. That looks wonderful!! I love claw foot tables 🙂 I re-did the top of our 90’s oak table a few years back. I still have to do the bottom(it is that awful hunter green). Your posts always inspire me 🙂

    Posted 6.17.16 Reply
    • Sarah wrote:

      Thanks Susanne! I loe claw foot tables too, they’re so dreamy. Good luck refinishing the bottom of your table!

      Posted 6.17.16 Reply
      • Morgan wrote:

        I was wondering where you got your Annie Sloan chalk paint. I can only find it in the quart size.

        Posted 5.7.17 Reply
      • Jean Hill wrote:

        did you have to sand the table first? I love it by the way…

        Posted 7.18.17 Reply
        • Sarah wrote:

          Nope, just went straight in with the chalk paint!

          Posted 7.18.17 Reply
          • Jessica wrote:

            If you were to sand the top of the table, would you recommend doing so by hand or getting an electric sander?

            Posted 9.8.17
          • Sarah wrote:

            Oh you can totally do that by hand!

            Posted 9.8.17
  2. Joette wrote:

    Your home is amazing! There’s not one thing I don’t like about it.♡
    I’ve got a table sitting in my garage as well screaming for me to give it new life.

    Posted 6.17.16 Reply
    • Sarah wrote:

      You’re so sweet Joette! Thank you so much. And heck yes, get that table out of the garage and get to work girl!

      Posted 6.17.16 Reply
  3. Ann Lietz wrote:

    Wow! Love it! You sure didn’t waste any time! Love the grey and white combination! Thanks for sharing!

    Posted 6.17.16 Reply
    • Sarah wrote:

      Thanks so much Ann, I’m loving the grey and white combo too!

      Posted 6.17.16 Reply
  4. Tricia wrote:

    Your table looks great! I love the color combo. I’m getting ready to paint our table, so thank you for the inspiration. So glad I found you on IG!

    Posted 6.17.16 Reply
    • Sarah wrote:

      Yay! So glad you found me too Tricia. Good luck painting your table!

      Posted 6.17.16 Reply
  5. Glenna wrote:

    The table is beautiful! How did you apply the polycrylic? Brush? I am finishing a dining table now and already applied one coat of AS wax. I am planning to do a 2nd but saw your comment, which is also a concern I have. Do you think I could polycrylic right over the wax or should I do some sanding? I don’t want to hurt the paint finish. Thx! Glenna

    Posted 6.18.16 Reply
    • Sarah wrote:

      We used a basic paint brush to apply the polycrylic. We did 2 coats, sanding a little in between the two. I’d say maybe sand down the top to remove the wax a bit and then go in with the poly. Good luck!

      Posted 6.18.16 Reply
      • Shallena Miller wrote:

        How does the table wash with the poly? I love chalk paint and have planned to use it on my table but with kids am a little worried.

        Posted 7.31.18 Reply
        • Sarah wrote:

          It washes up really well! We are a couple years into using it almost every day now and it’s hoping up like a champ.

          Posted 7.31.18 Reply
          • Ashley Kelly wrote:

            I would love to see a pic of the table top now, after using the water based poly as the finish, and after exposure to sunlight. I fear yellowing.

            Posted 8.31.18
  6. Kellie wrote:

    Love it! Great job!!! And this is how my mom describes me! Now in my own house I not only move furniture all the time but entire room switches!!! I can’t help it!!!

    Posted 6.18.16 Reply
  7. Debbi wrote:

    Luv, Luv, Luv your home, your
    D-I-Ys, and you! Keep me motivated please…

    Posted 6.18.16 Reply
    • Sarah wrote:

      Thanks so much Debbi, I really appreciate that!

      Posted 6.20.16 Reply
  8. Jane wrote:

    I simply love it. Paris Gray is a great color by Annie Sloan. I love the carving under the top. I would sand that a bit more to show how old and pretty it is. And if you ever tire of it, send it this way!!!


    Posted 6.19.16 Reply
    • Sarah wrote:

      haha! Will do Jane! 🙂

      Posted 6.20.16 Reply
  9. Nikki wrote:

    Looks great! I just purchased almost the same table for $25 off Craigslist. I painted it all white:) I will use poly seal as well. I want it to hold up with wear and tear. Your table and chairs are perfect! Great job.

    Posted 6.19.16 Reply
  10. Alicia wrote:

    Love your home! Can you tell me what you used to distress the grey part of the table?

    Posted 6.21.16 Reply
    • Sarah wrote:

      Thank you Alicia! I just used a piece of fine grit sand paper.

      Posted 6.21.16 Reply
  11. Shelley wrote:

    Love how your table turned out!!! I just got a coffee table that is the exact miniature of your table and I have been wanting to chalk paint it white and know I’m excited to do it because I can see the end product and I love it!! I will take your advice too, with the poly, on other piece that I have that are chalk paint and waxed they don’t hold up as well and I definitely want something that is more wearable!
    Thank you, love your blog and all your DIY’s!!!

    Posted 6.22.16 Reply
  12. Ann Richie wrote:

    Hi Sarah,
    Am planning to paint a similar oak table to stage a house we are preparing for sale. I usually brush the paint with the grain, but the top of this table — like yours — has a starburst pattern. Did you just brush in any direction? or did you use a roller for the tabletop?
    Thank you for the inspiration! Well done!
    Matthew 5:16

    Posted 6.25.16 Reply
    • Sarah wrote:

      Hi Ann! I brushed vertically on the top of the table. It took 2 coats, so no brush strokes show. And I just used a normal paint brush. Thanks for stopping by!

      Posted 6.25.16 Reply
  13. Erin wrote:

    Beautiful! What is the color on your living room wall…looks like a beige/tan/yellow?

    Posted 6.30.16 Reply
    • Sarah wrote:

      Thanks Erin. The color is Autumn Blonde by Sherwin Williams.

      Posted 6.30.16 Reply
  14. Irma wrote:

    Hello Sarah.

    Beautiful work. What kind of paint did you use for the chairs? I have one that is the same but I want to spruce it up.


    Posted 7.6.16 Reply
    • Sarah wrote:

      Those chairs were painted with Annie Sloan Old White.

      Posted 7.6.16 Reply
      • Emma wrote:

        Did you seal the chairs as well? Wax? Or leave with just the paint?

        Posted 9.1.16 Reply
        • Sarah wrote:

          I did Emma, I used Clear Annie Sloan Wax on the chairs.

          Posted 9.1.16 Reply
  15. Hilary wrote:

    I am in the process of redoing my dining room table with chalk paint – I was going to wax, but I just read your piece about the polycrylic. Did you use multiple coats of the polycrylic and if so, how long inbetween coats? Also, do you apply with a regular paint brush? Thanks!

    Posted 8.22.16 Reply
    • Sarah wrote:

      We used 2 coats, but I might add one more down the road. We used a normal paint brush to apply it. We sanded lightly with steel wool between coats and waited about an hour I think before applying another coat. Good luck with your table!

      Posted 8.22.16 Reply
  16. Nancy wrote:

    Hi there, I was just wondering if you sanded the entire table before applying the chalk paint? I have read mixed things about whether or not one must sand the furniture prior to using chalk paint specifically.

    Thanks! The space looks great! 🙂

    Posted 10.6.16 Reply
    • Sarah wrote:

      Nope, I didn’t sand it at all. Sometimes not sanding can cause an issue with the paint adhering to the wood, but I’ve never had that experience. It always works fine. But you can always sand the top down a bit just to be safe.

      Posted 10.6.16 Reply
  17. Morgan wrote:

    Love your table! I’ve been wanting to do something similar with our old oak table. I’m wondering how does your beautiful table stand up to daily use with small kids? Eating. Coloring. Etc. I have a 3, 1 and one on the way. I think I saw you have littles? Thanks!

    P.S. Just found your site and am really enjoying it. We live in a little limestone house built in 1852!

    Posted 10.7.16 Reply
    • Sarah wrote:

      Great question Morgan! It is holding up REALLY well with the kiddos coloring on it, drawing on it, and banging on it all the time. My daughter even got nail polish on the top and it came right off with nail polish remover and no damage to the table. Definitely use that polycrclic to finish it off and NOT wax. I used just wax on our bathroom vanities and it’s not holding up well at all.

      Posted 10.8.16 Reply
  18. Angie wrote:

    I have the exact table that I’m looking to revive with a new look. 🙂 Did you have to remove the varnish from the table before painting?

    Posted 3.23.17 Reply
    • Sarah wrote:

      Nope! Not with the chalk paint, you can paint right over it.

      Posted 3.23.17 Reply
  19. Michele Smoot wrote:

    Sarah I love your table tutorial. It is very informative and the polycrylic is going to be the way I go when I refinish our table. Thank you for the simple and easy to follow directions. Be blessed!!

    Posted 4.17.17 Reply
    • Sarah wrote:

      So glad you enjoyed the post Michele! And thanks for dropping by!

      Posted 4.17.17 Reply
  20. Jenn wrote:

    I have a table almost identical to yours and have been wanting to paint it for the last year! It’s going to happen asap after seeing your pics! Thanks for the inspiration!

    Posted 9.17.17 Reply
  21. Betsey wrote:

    I painted my dining table using Annie Sloan Pure White chalk paint. The first time I used polyurethane for top coat and it yellowed! Needless to say I sanded the whole table down and started again. I keep researching and I am not sure what to use to avoid that yellowing appearance. I see you used the polycrylic. I read elsewhere that can also produce a yellow appearance on light colors. I did not see any mention of any color change in your blog. So my question is that, have you experienced or seen this to be true?

    Posted 10.15.17 Reply
    • Sarah wrote:

      Hi Betsy, I haven’t seen any yellowing yet on that table. I’m not really sure why, but thankfully it hasn’t happened for me yet. Sorry that happened to you, what a huge pain to sand it down and start again!

      Posted 10.15.17 Reply
      • Cyndy Mackenzie wrote:

        Polyacrylic has two varieties one may yellow the other does not (Check with the sales people at your paint store) . I ran into that when we were refurbishing our cupboards in a former kitchen Unfortunately we had to sand, repaint and re apply the non yellowing variety on the affected doors.

        Posted 11.11.17 Reply
      • GAIL wrote:


        Posted 12.17.17 Reply
        • Debra wrote:

          Me too! Working on a kitchen cupboard project-chalked them all and then applied polycrylic after much research (decided against wax) only to have it yellow!? Sanded it all down and started over. Still searching for a topcoat….anyone try the Rustoleum topcoat?

          Posted 12.30.17 Reply
  22. Kellie Blount wrote:

    Hi Sarah. Your table looks beautiful by the way though I have a question relating more to the table itself. In your post you mentioned that you obtained the table from your aunt’s garage sale. I have the identical table and have been painfully trying to identify and obtain a value for the table before I sell it but have not been able to do so. However I have seen numerous posts on Pinterest where people have refinished the table so I am going down the list and one-by-one trying to see if anyone has information on the table itself. I wasn’t sure if it was antique or vintage? The legs are that of a sleeping cobra and the only identification mine has is way under the table top there’s a stamp in Japanese which I had translated to mean “table for many people.” This makes sense to me because I bought it from a friend almost 30 years ago who bought in Japan while stationed there. If you or your Aunt has any information on the table I would greatly appreciate it. Thank you!

    Posted 3.26.18 Reply
    • Sarah wrote:

      Oh wow Kellie, it sounds like you have an awesome table!! This done doesn’t have anything like that, so I can’t say what kind of value yours would have. But I regularly see these tables on Craigslist for anywhere from $100-$250 depending on the table. I paid $50 for this one because my cousin just wanted to get it gone!

      Posted 3.26.18 Reply
  23. Karen wrote:

    So my daughter is getting married and we have the table/chairs, but wonder how long of a project this might be? Table and 6 chairs, 2 layers chalk paint and acrylic top coat? Thx!

    Posted 4.19.18 Reply
  24. Sarah wrote:

    Hi, Sarah!

    I love this beautiful makeover! I’m getting ready to chalk paint my table, and I’m curious if this has held up well for you! Thank you! 🙂

    A Fellow Sarah 🙂

    Posted 5.24.18 Reply
    • Sarah wrote:

      It’s help up really well actually!! Even with kids beating it up everyday! 🙂

      Posted 5.27.18 Reply
  25. Dawn wrote:

    I love your farmhouse table. We just recently moved into a smaller house (retired and downsized). I have been painting furniture for years cuz I love the look. I had to get rid of my dining set cuz it was too big for our small space and ended up with my mother in laws round oak pedestal table which had lots of lacquer on top. I painted the bottom white and am using a dark stain on top as I like the look of the contrast. Having to sand it lots but am going to love the look when it’s done. Love your blogs..

    Posted 7.20.18 Reply
  26. Kimberly Axie wrote:

    I am getting ready to paint my table as well. I love the Annie Sloan chalk paints but just like you, I’m not a fan of the wax seal. I want to try the seal that you used but was wondering if your final product remained flat or did it shine it up. It was kind of hard to tell in the pics. I prefer a flat finish.

    Posted 10.1.18 Reply
  27. Sharron Sonders wrote:

    I’m about to do my oak kitchen cupboards. 20 cupboards plus other oak panels and 4 drawers. I have never used chalk paint but really can’t afford Annie Sloan as I’m a pensioner with very little left over at the end of the month. I don’t want pure white but soft beige color. I also want to use a light black smidgen on the grooves of the inserted panels on the doors. Do you truthfully think Home Depot Chalk Paint with Polycrylic top coat will do the trick. Should I use a sponge roller on the door panels and paint brush down the inserts. Want to do a good job but very nervous to get started. Or, should I bite the bullet and wait to purchase Annie Sloan. About how many cans would I need. Do you have any ideas.

    Posted 11.1.18 Reply
  28. The Purple Phantom wrote:

    Just my opinion, but It’s sad that you had to ruin all that beautiful oak inlay with trashy paint.

    Posted 11.5.18 Reply
    • Sarah wrote:

      well thank goodness it’s my table and not yours! 🙂

      Posted 11.5.18 Reply
  29. Anne wrote:

    I have stripped a table top and want to paint it because the wood is quite strange. It has a wood grain, only in some places, that just cannot be sanded down and really does not accept the stain. It’s patchy and rough in places.I have stripped it down 3 times now and really do not want to do it again.
    I cannot fine Annie Sloan paint in Canada.
    Are they basically all the same or are some brands better than others?

    Posted 11.16.18 Reply
    • Sarah wrote:

      You would be fine with Rust-Oleum chalk paint or even the Magnolia Home chalk paint, which is now available at Target!

      Posted 11.18.18 Reply

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