DIY Rustic Coffee Table Upgrade

We moved into our house about 2.5 years ago, and all of a sudden I am itching to change EVERYTHING! We’re in the process of painting the rooms, but I’m ready for a new feel and style to our house!

However, with that said, we on a budget over here! I’m not a super DIY person, but I had seen my sister make over her coffee table a few years ago. It turned out really well and with a similar look I wanted for mine! This was a pretty simple, cheap, and easy process. I definitely made some mistakes so it is far from perfect, BUT I like it so much better than what we had! It absolutely fits what I want the style of our living room to look like when it’s completed.

Again, a really simple process, but I did a poll on my Instagram a while ago and people seemed interested in seeing some DIY projects I wanted to work on, so I thought I’d share the process with y’all!

ALSO. I need to disclaim that my dad, like, can build houses and stuff. So once I was done and they came for a visit, he decided to help make it look *a little* more professional. He brought his professional grade sander down to round the corners and edges, as well as a planar. The planar takes a really thin layer off the top of the wood to leave it smoother. (My dad is a worrier grandparent and was kind of nervous about the kids and the corners.)


This is what we were workin’ with. This was given to us free when we moved into our house. It’s pretty simple, so I really didn’t mind the structure of it, I just really wanted a way to update it a little bit!

diy coffee table upgrade


-Coffee table (obviously)

-Sand Paper

-Spray Paint

-Wood (I used 7 1X4X6ft board and had Dan cut them to size. I’m going to use the cut off portions to make matching shelves.)

-Stain and a rag

-Wood glue (I used Gorilla Wood Glue)


-Steel wool

-Foam Brush


I started by sanding the entire table thoroughly, then wiping it clean so there was no dust or residue. I used a flat black matte spray paint to paint the legs and sides of the table. With spray paint I do quite a few LIGHT coats to try and avoid dripping that can occur with spray paint. The legs of this table were already dark to begin with, but I think I did about 5-6 (again, very light) coats to get it even and make sure all marks were covered.

After that, I cut my 1x4x6 (and my “I cut” I mean, my husband cut) to the desired length. I wanted about an inch overhang on the sides. I then sanded the wood to get rid of all really rough spots since I knew my kids would be running their hands all over this table! (This was helped even more when my dad brought down his planar.) Once smooth, I used a foam brush to paint on the stain. The color I picked was a little darker naturally than I wanted. So as soon as I painted the stain on, I used a rag to wipe it off, and this provided the perfect color.

rustic coffee table upgrade diy easy coffee table update diy

Once all the wood was stained, I measured out where I wanted the boards to lay. I used Gorilla wood glue to attach it to the table. I applied glue to the coffee table and the side of the previous board I put down, that way it was attached the whole way across. Be careful not to use too thick of a layer of glue! It will either squeeze out the top, or, when it hardens, it will raise the board above the other boards so they won’t be even and flush.

Once all the boards were applied and the stain was dry, I used a foam brush to apply polyurethane to the top. I let that dry, used steel wool to lightly sand that down, and applied another layer of poly. We did that twice to get a really nice glossy finish on the table.

DIY coffee table upgrade

Move into the house, and enjoy your new coffee table!

So there you have it! It is definitely not perfect if inspected closely. I was a little too liberal with the wood glue so some boards aren’t quite flush with the table. But I’m happy with it overall, and I’m so excited about how it’s starting to fit in since we did a face lift on our fireplace (that DIY is coming soon!).

rustic coffee table facelift modern coffee table update

Have you done a DIY?? I’m always so interested to see what other people are working on! I’m planning on doing some matching shelves after we paint the walls, so I’ll do a post once I get those done!

Have a phenomenal day!

mom blog, lifestyle blog

diy modern coffee table


  1. Mary Leigh @ Live Well Play Together

    December 12, 2018 at 8:44 am

    It looks so good!! I have been wanting to update some things in our hiuse, too, but haven’t started! Maybe in the new year! You did such a good job!

  2. Mom

    December 13, 2018 at 8:45 pm

    It looks awesome!!

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