Old Book Page Coffee Table

 I picked this old coffee table up on ebay.
I hadn't redone a coffee table before,
and I was interested to see what I could do with it.

Here she is in all her original brown glory,
laminate top and all.
Something they forgot to mention in the ebay listing.
I always tend to steer clear of laminate.
It's just plain scary hoping the paint will stick.

So for this project I did some research and decided to try
Zinsser Oil Based Cover Stain primer.
 Other posts had raved about it.
And the can said no sanding, will adhere to shiny surfaces
(such as laminate) and will block stains including tanin.
So I gave my table one coat of Cover Stain,
then after that had dried I applied a coat of semi gloss paint.  

But when I brought it inside that night to inspect it after it dried,
I noticed there was already a bit of scratched off paint on the top, grrr..
AND massive tanin stains had seeped through the paint on the legs.
Can you see the brown patches on the legs above?

Then I scratched the top surface with my fingernail and the paint flaked off.
Like this...

If you have used it, any suggestions what I did wrong?
I'm guessing I didn't mix it properly.

As it was Friday night, I still wanted to finish this project on the weekend.
So I pulled out my White Knight  Stain Stop Binder and gave the whole piece 2 coats.  

This covered the stains well.  

Next morning I added a coat of white chalk paint all over.
And this seemed to stop the top from flaking. Woohoo! :)

After taking it outside I distressed the table on all the edges
but wanted to add some detail to the top.
I thought about painting a graphic on,
but my love of old book pages won out.  

So out with my Modge Podge and old book of Shakespeare
in front of the tv after the kids went to bed.
It didn't take very long to cover at all. :)

I let it dry over night and then the next morning sprayed on a coat of
White Knight Clear Gloss to seal and protect the entire table.

I'm so pleased with how it turned out. :)

The book pages will protect the laminate top so I don't have to 
worry about scratches or flaking at all now.

Tea anyone?  And that is my coveted, we don't drink out of,
look but don't touch, Royal Doulton tea cup and saucer on the table.  :)  
Isn't the colour gorgeous!

P.S. Take a peak up in the left hand corner of this photo.
That is the leg of my redone writing desk.
It's exactly the same design as the coffee table legs!!!
Queen Anne style. I love that it matches. :)

P.P.S. I emailed Rustoleum who makes the Zinsser paint about
my concerns and received a reply today advising it does
take 3-5 days for the paint to fully cure.
They also offered to come out and inspect the table. 
I thought that was really great customer service.
I'm going to try it on another project and see how it turns out. :)

:) Julie


  1. what a great redo! thanks for linking up to make it monday! I have shared it on the Brassy Apple FB and twitter pages!

  2. This is a beautiful renovation- love the distressing, and the book pages are a nice touch!!

    P.S. I also love how you put digital photo corners around your photo!!

    1. Thanks Laura. PicMonkey is great for photo editing.

  3. Hi Julie: I'm Connie at http://hotflashncraftn.blogspot.com/, your new GF friend. I would love it if you stop by and be mine.
    The $10 table looks awesome. Thanks for sharing...

    1. Thanks Connie. I'm following you too! x Julie

  4. This is really ingenious! I just love those faded book pages.

  5. Wow, I really like how your coffee table turned out!! Great job!

  6. Oooh I love this....so pretty! What's your trick to get your pages to lay so flat and not get any wrinkles when using mod podge? New follower...stop by shabbgals.blogspot.com when you get a chance.

    1. The pages were old and pretty stiff to begin with. :) I used a generous amount of Modge Podge on the back and made sure it was spread all over. Then I just pressed them down. Must have been the chalk paint underneath that stopped the wrinkling, or maybe just lucky ;) . Thanks for dropping by. x Julie

  7. Great job persevering through that first attempt! I absolutely adore the idea of old book pages on the top. It would be a great conversation piece, not to mention just a treasure to have! I love old things with a new spin! I would love if you were able to stop at my first session of Sweet Sharing Mondays (new weekly party- with features!) and link up! http://saynotsweetanne.com/2012/sweet-sharing-monday/

  8. I love this so much!!! So creative and nice job - looks gorgeous. I would love it if you linked this up to my blog hop - Take it on Tuesday: http://romanceonadime.com/take-it-on-tuesday/take-it-on-tuesday-blog-hop-25-daily-goals-list-printables/

    Thanks, have a great day!

  9. super cute, julie! i think that this table was so perfect for the look you created!

  10. Hi Julie your table turned out so cute. I'm glad you persevered and it turned out so pretty for you. I'm visiting from POWW

  11. What a creative idea to put the book pages on top...I love it! It turned out beautiful :)

    Christine @ Park House Love

  12. Love that table, great innovation to solve a problem! It looks amazing! This is my first visit so I am off to check out some more of your posts! X

  13. Love it! Thanks for linking up at Show Me What You Got Tuesday's at ODH http://ourdelightfulhome.blogspot.com/2012/04/live-linky-party-10.html

    Mrs. Delightful

  14. Great table I love it. I am your newest follower.

  15. That turned out fantastic! Sometimes I wonder if some of these factory finishes react strangely with certain products. Glad it all worked out for you!

  16. Julie, this is the second time I've clicked on one of your projects at a linky party and again I just loved it! I'm definitely going to follow your blog now! This idea would work great in the French Country themed room I'm working on right now for a friend. Check it out when you have a minute. Cheers, MGal watchmediy.com

  17. I love it you did an amazing job! Your distressing looks really good, as does everything about it!

  18. Applause, bowing, to your brilliance, this is lovely, inspired, truly!! Hopping over from Marni's sassy site :-) Hugs and happy weekend wishes

    1. Hello I am viviting from "blog stalker". I love how your table turned out. I am definitely becoming a follower. I also think it's major cool that you live all the way across the world in Australia ( one of my dream destinations ).

  19. i love this, julie! love your blog name-too cute!

  20. Love this table! I am now following your blog. I also nominated you for the Versatile Blogger Award. Go to my blog for the details:)

    Rachel (absolutelylovingmylife.blogspot.com)

  21. I found your project on Pinterest & I love it!! Beautiful job!!

  22. What a beautiful coffee table project--I love the book pages you mod podged on the top. I may try something like this with an older coffee table that is going to be leaving the living room and going into an upstairs room that is turning into a library!


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