Black Beauty

Here's the story of a lonely dining room. Beige, empty, colorless, sad.
{Not pictured here. There is nothing to picture.}

This room is my new priority. I have been "thinking" of what table I wanted in here for a year or so.
I can never buckle down on big decisions like this.

I was set on round. I wanted this 60" round form pottery barn for a long time. I was trying to save up.

Then I had an idea that my husband should do a built-in on the bare wall, so I needed to go a little smaller.
Oval. So I was looking at things like this from For sure more budget friendly.

Then I was thinking, is there a way I can do this for even cheaper? I've seen some cool Craigslist make-overs.
Then, a revelation came as I ran into
She had a similar style table that she painted black herself.
She was going for the look of the same "aris" table from pottery barn.
We were kindred spirits on the same mission, only she was smarter.

So I went on a Craigslist hunt to find the style table I wanted.

It was my first experience with Craigslist and I wasn't a fan at first.
Apparently it is first come first serve and I found this out the hard way. Twice.
Finally, I found this baby.


It was pretty good quality, seated 6 and had the potential to become my black beauty.
I was so grateful that Lisa from was willing to answer my questions and
gave me great advice from what paint she used, to how many coats, to what brush/roller to use.

So I went through these simple steps in one Saturday!
I sanded

I painted

i love

It is not too far from my original plans, but it is 1/9 of the cost of the pottery barn one
and 1/4 the cost of the target one. (I'm including shipping)
So I think I'm going to call myself a "frugalista." I've always liked that word.

The good news is that there is hope for my lonely dining room.

dining room

The bad news is that there is still a long way to go.
Next item of business, chairs. I'm thinking about these from Pier 1.
Then there needs to be some color somewhere, then the hubs needs to build my dream shelves.

It is a start and I'm excited about that. No promises on when it will all be finished.
I am indecisive, you know.

I'm linking to: thrifty decor chick, blue cricket design, Between Naps on the Porch, Twice Remembered, A Soft Place to Land, domestically speaking and today's creative blog.


  1. I guess you're smarter than me....I've never worried about if I mess something up by painting it. It looks like it's brand new! Your hubby's got to be thrilled at the money you saved him. You're so thoughtful like that. Always thinking of him.

    (Oh, and I've been secretly coveting those chairs too. And the child free home that they would have to reside in to stay looking so pretty. I'm thinking maybe slipcovers? Because you KNOW how much I love to sew...)

  2. This is better than Pottery Barn. We've got one of those. It was white on the porch, then natural in the house, now it's blue on another porch. It was already old when my parents got it in 1958. Lot's of family eating on that table.

  3. It turned out beautiful. It looks brand new.

  4. Looks so great! I'm a frugalista myself so I definitely appreciate the effort you put into this.
    -Heather @

  5. The chairs from Pier1 would look great in your dining room. And if you wanted to change up the colors for a holiday or a party, you could do it very easily. Nice work on the table!

  6. Thanks for stopping by my blog- nice to meet you! Your table looks fantastic and your blog is awesome! Those pier1 chairs are lovely. Have you considered the henriksdal chairs from ikea? The shape is pretty much identical and they have removable changeable slipcovers. I think one chair with a white cover costs $59 (half the price of the pier 1 chairs). I lucked out on CL and got 4 of these chairs for $25! I've been living with them for 3 years and I find them to be quite sturdy and durable. They don't sell the covers individually online, but they are available in stores. There is a pretty black and white pattern, but it's not the same as the large scale damask on the pier 1 chairs. Do you sew? I think it would be pretty simple to make covers in the fabric of your choice.

  7. It turned out great! I so want to do this with our dining table... but I am scared!

  8. Great work! What a nice transformation! You are a brave and talented mama!

  9. Beautiful table that you did a great job painting! I'd love for you to link your table up to my Power of Paint Party that is starting tonight 7pm (PST). Hope to see you there!

  10. I agree, the table is great. I have a little piece to paint soon. This makes we want to start now!

  11. I love how the black really pops. It looks great with the black frames!

  12. So pretty! I also love the way you decorated the wall in the background...too cute.

    Jennie @ Cinnaberry Suite

  13. Love it. I am looking for the EXACT SAME THING for my dining room! It looks great!

  14. Good job Ashleigh. I Craigslist all the time- buying and selling. Love the chairs. Looks like you're getting quite a following on this blog. Good work.

  15. Ashleigh,

    Beautiful job. It looks like a new table. Think of the money you saved! Thanks for sharing.


  16. I have a table like that currently in my kitchen and would LOVE to transform it to a black one. Why have I never thought of that??? Can you give me the link to see what type of paint, etc to use or would you mind e-mailing me what you used. Your table looks beautiful.

  17. Actually I checked out the link, I am just wondering about the type/brand of paint and did you sand by hand? thanks so much for your input!

  18. your table is gorgeous! i am currently having a love affair with all things black and i just love how your table turned out! after seeing it i am seriously considering painting my table legs black!
    thanks for sharing!

  19. Looks awesome! I'm thinking about also painting our dining room table black, what type of brush and roller did you use? I'm afraid there will be brush/roller strokes in the paint, any advice in getting a flawless finish?

  20. Jody, I don't have a link to you, so I will answer your question here! I used a 4 inch foam roller for the top and I used the same thing on the base plus a foam brush to get in the groves. This was recommended to me by Lisa @ I had worries too, but it really worked. No streaks. I was careful to apply even pressure with the roller on top. Good luck to you! Let me know if I can help any more.

  21. Thanks for the tips!

  22. Looks great! I love those chairs too. Have you checked TJ MAx? I've seen similar chairs there for around $90 each.

  23. I love the table and those chairs! I have been anxiously waiting to do this to my kitchen table (exactly the same as yours) but have tested the technique on a small table I found in the garbage :) I can't get a smooth surface with the foam roller or by any other means. I get a million little bubbles that dry on the surface. Did you prime or just sand and paint? What exact paint did you use? Did you put a top coat on? Any help would be greatly appreciated :) Thanks, Stephanie

  24. Stephanie- I did not prime it. I just sanded and painted. I don't know how, but the foam roller really worked for me, and it is smooth. Honestly, I'm really picky and OCD about these things. Maybe it is the paint. I used Valspar brand, latex enamel from Lowe's. I used black satin. The paint says on the can, for wood, metal, etc... Also, try not to press very hard with the roller and do even stripes. If all this still doesn't help, I guess you can rent a nice airless paint sprayer. The only problem is that you have to buy a ton of extra paint to run through the machine. I've sprayed furniture before, but honestly, I was thrilled with the ease, value and result with the foam roller. I hope it works out for you.

  25. Ashleigh,
    Thank you so much. That is the exact paint I tried but I primed it was a spray on primer. When I used the paint I found the bottom of the paint was really thick and the top runny. I have to wonder if I didn't stir it well enough and that caused the bubbles. Did you find this as well? Thank you for the advice. Oh I bought the exact same table off kijiji for $40 so if it doesn't work I am really not out anything but I really hope I can get it to look like your. Thank you again,

  26. Stephanie, I didn't have that problem of being thick and runny. Could the paint be out of date? How many coats did you do? Do the tiny bubbles pop? I'm baffled. I don't think primer would make it bad, if anything it would make it look better. I'm sorry I'm not more help.

  27. Thank you Ashleigh for all your help. After seeing your technique, I tested out the paint and roller on a raw piece of pine and there were now air bubbles. When I primed the other piece the air bubbles dried as bubbles and top looked rough and bumpy ...but without the primer it was perfectly smooth! I am so grateful for your help. Thanks again. Stephanie


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