A Tree Grows in the Family Room
I feel like I’ve been coming at you readers with several unfinished…actually, unSTARTED projects lately. Like Sadie’s room/the guest room and the ever plaguing art over the sofa ordeal. So I’m glad we happily have a checked box on the to-do list.
The Tree Stump Table is finito.
Okay, ALMOST finito. We still have to seal the sucker, but I couldn’t wait to share pics.
Let’s recap where we started.
Ah yes. The 5am phone call from our neighbors while we were on our honeymoon.
“It didn’t hit the house?”
“Is there anything I HAVE to do now?”
“Okay. We’ll just deal with it when we get back.”
First things first.
Now back to reality.
Here’s the West Elm table that inspired the lemonade-out-of-lemons project:
As for our version, first, well, secondly, it looked like this:
And after it dried for about 3 months, Taylor removed the bark and we were left with this:
We were drawn to leaving it upside down as pictured above, but it was not as level as we would like, so we decided to use it as it grew. Fat on the bottom, skinny on the top. Our pear-shaped pine tree.
Taylor hacked off the craggy limbs.
It was rocking back and forth, so I got called in to add a little stability.
I tried not to be offended.
Then he smoothed out the top with the belt sander using a medium grit paper.
And the same for the sides.
This was the second once-over–second-over?–with the sander. We decided we liked the color variation, as seen on the top half, but not the spotting as seen on the bottom half. So Taylor did another pass to even out the tone.
After a final sanding with a fine-grit sandpaper and a wipe down by yours truly, all the nubs and bumps were smooth and clean and we brought it inside.
I love how the knots and irregularities look.
And it goes surprisingly well with the room, picking up on the lighter tones in our rug and pillows, plus the gray of the sofas.
The last thing we have to do is seal it. We bought some Wipe On Poly in a satin finish (which we were assured is as close to matte as you can get) and that will seal it in case the occasional glass of propped lemon water in a wine glass spills.
I counted the rings on the top. 57. Our house was built 54 years ago. Does that make this officially an antique?
Are you a fan? Can we put you on the wait list for 5-7 years from now to offset the costs for when we’ll inevitably have to chop down the rest of the tree?
If not, maybe we can go wholesale to West Elm.
EDITED TO ADD:
My furniture restoring extraordinaire friend Kristen Davis told me the following:
“Alert, alert! don’t use the satin poly if you want a matte finish! use furniture wax!!!!!! i hate poly because it’s always shiny and streaky – no matter what!! wax is the bomb. i use minwax brand, in a yellow container, in “natural”. you rub it on with a non-shedding rag.”
Thanks for the stump-saving tip, KFD!