Chic Coffee Table in 30 minutes or less

Greetings! Today I'm excited to share a simple technique you can try on your coffee table.   I used this technique on our living room coffee table that once belonged to my husband's grandmother.  The table needed a face lift.   I immediately thought about how I would paint the piece.  It is a beautiful, dark, solid wood piece of furniture and I wasn't sold on the idea of painting it right away.  Additionally, the table came with a glass top.  I didn't love the idea of a glass top, but wasn't ready to remove it either.   In my attempts at reducing the amount of dark wood in our living room, I came up with a pretty cool alternative to getting out my paint (at least I think it's pretty cool!). 


Get ready for this one.....I actually never thought I'd be using one of these "ingredients" on a table face lift, but I TOTALLY did.  And the result?  A chic table that helped achieve my goal to brighten up our living room.   I would recommend this technique with a table that either has a glass surface (a glass piece cut to fit the table top), or, a surface that isn't a high traffic zone.   The reason?  This face lift involves contact paper and duck tape.   There, I said it.  Duck tape.  On a table?   Yes, friends!  Duck tape.  But I promise not the ugly gray duck tape!  Here's what you will need for a chic table in 20 minutes: 


1.  A table!   (ensure the surface is smooth; you may have to sand it down if there are bumps on it or old paint globs).  Any type of surface that contact paper can adhere to is acceptable! 

2.  Rag: clean your table surface before you begin

2.  Contact paper (with adhesive backing)

3.  Tape measure & scissors

3.  Duck Tape (I used Shur-Tech X Factor Duck Tape, by Blick Art Materials)


I'd love to be able to share step by step photos for this project with you, but, it all happened so fast that I forgot to take pictures!   I will try and make this as detailed as possible so you can replicate it if your heart desires:   

1.  Measure your table top dimensions (length/width of table top)

2. Measure your contact paper using the same measurements as your table top.  Cut it out.  You might need two pieces of contact paper if you have a larger table surface....

Ideally if you can cover your table surface with a single piece of paper this is the easiest say to go, but my table width was too wide for the width of my contact paper (shoot!), but, I remedied that fairly easily....I used two pieces of contact paper and joined the pieces right down the center of the table.   So, the seam ran across the table's center. What to do?  See below... you'll see the trick I used to cover the seam! 

3.  Once your contact paper is cut to size, you can begin to peel off the backing.  Placing contact paper on any surface is my nemesis.  I have found that it takes practice, and more practice.  Do not let this step get you down. Keep trying!  You might consider practicing putting contact paper on something else, before you start your table!  TIP: I peel off smaller portions of contact paper at a time, to avoid having to work with one huge piece with sticky backing.

I smooth out the piece onto the surface as I go.  Peelling more paper off as the surface is covered/smoothed over.  The paper will crease....that part is annoying.  When that happens, I peel it back off the surface (slowly, carefully) and start over again.  Like I said, this is a nemesis of mine!    IMPORTANT TIP:  Not all edges of the contact paper went to the edges of the table perfectly.  This didn't look good at all!  I swore I measured  accurately, but, there was one side that had a half-inch wide gap, where the paper did not reach the edge of the table! Not good. But, no worries.  That is where the duck tape comes in.  But first, smooth your surface....

4.  Smooth out the contact paper on your table surface until you are satisfied with its placement on the table.  This might mean peeling off corners (gently) and reapplying them to the surface so you can get rid of any creases. 

5.  Now it's time to get out your duck tape.  Originally I had not thought about using duck tape on this table, but, when I found out how difficult it was to align the paper with the table, I needed a solution.  I decided to use duck tape to provide the straight edge for the outer boundary of the table, and to cover the gaps where the paper didn't reach.  I used a metallic gold duck tape all the way around the outer edge of the table, and down the center (remember that seam I told you about?  It's now under this center strip of tape!). You can see the strip of tape along the center of the table below: 

To apply the tape, I started at each corner so there would be a single strip of tape along each side of the table edge.  To align the tape nicely with your table edge, stick the tape end on the corner of your table edge, pull a long piece of tape from the roll (keeping it on the roll of tape), and pull tightly with one hand as you stick the tape to the table surface with the other hand.  You can find a variety of duck tape colors and prints at Wal-mart, Target, Hobby Lobby, and other craft stores.   Since my contact paper was patterned, I went with a sold metallic gold tape. 

5.  Smooth over the tape to get rid of any creases.  Then return the glass to your table top surface, or....not.  And that's it!   A chic, new table for your home!   Remember that this might not be the best technique to use on a table that is used a ton (especially for food and drinks). Contact paper is usually easily wiped clean, but I don't know the longevity of this type of surface with frequent wiping.     

Who knew?  Duck tape on a table. Believe me, I never thought I'd use any kind of tape on a piece of furniture, but, I did.  And I rather like the result.  There may come a day when I will take a paint brush to this table, but for now, I'm enjoying my chic, new table that I finished in 30 minutes or less!  

Do you have a table screaming for a spring face-lift?  Give this technique a try!  Have some fun with patterns or colors in the contact paper and tape you choose!    

Happy duck-taping!