Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Trash Picked Tuesday: MCM coffee table makeover!

A while back I did a post on this coffee table that my parents were throwing out. (Literally- it was at the curb and I trash-picked it from my own parents.) You may also recognize the country craptacular sofas that we got rid of by giving to my brother last fall. ;)

I had always liked it, but it was never very sturdy. The legs were always wobbly (I remember it being like that ever since I was little) and with the soft pine top, you could never get them to screw in tight. Plus, you can see how beat up the top was. 

Well, one night about 6 weeks ago the thing completely collapsed. Two of the four brackets that held the legs  just broke, and I could not find replacements at any of the big box home stores (big surprise).

So, now it was time for plan B. I searched the internet for replacement brackets and got sidetracked looking at some beautiful MCM coffee tables. Recognizing inspiration when it bites me on the foot, it occurred to me that hairpin legs would look spectacular with this top.

I found a little company in Ohio that makes nothing but hairpin legs in their shop, at www.hairpinlegs.com. I always try to buy American and buy from individual craftsmen and this was the perfect opportunity! They offer all different heights and finishes for their handmade hairpin legs, and the price is very reasonable. I ordered a set in natural steel and it arrived within a week.

I couldn't have been happier- they were perfect, and I knew the would be a lot sturdier than the wobbly original legs. Now I just needed to make the top beautiful again. 

After completely stripping the top and applying at least 8 coats of stain with a high gloss finish, I am very pleased with the result:

It is rock-solid- no chance of wobbling ever again!

My dad was over last night for a little belated Father's Day get together and was blown away by the table he had bought 40 years ago from a little craftsman in New Hampshire. We got him to write the name of the town and the date he bought it on the underside. As my brother and cousins will attest, it's something of a tradition for my dad to write the purchase date of things he buys on its owner's manual, so we thought this was pretty cool.  (As a bonus, you can see how we attached the legs!)

This coffee table will go back upstairs with our new MCM-inspired sofas, so watch for that post in the future.


  1. What an amazing makeover. The table looks great. We order from hairpinlegs.com too, and we're just about to do a makeover on a credenza that got damaged when my daughter and SIL moved.

  2. wow it looks amazing now ;-)) Such cute legs to, dee x

  3. Great idea! I'll have to keep hairpinlegs.com in mind for future furniture repairs!

  4. Wow I learned something new! I didn't know you could get those legs! Love it and it looks great!

  5. Sue, that is terrific. It looks great!

  6. That coffee table is so cool! I love the makeover!

    That you for your visit and your comment! I'd love to see your flying saucer lamps, is it possible to send me pick at valerie.barbeau@gmail.com ?

    I,m looking for vintage, flying sauceresque and a good size for a dining room table.

    Let me know :)

    Miss V.