Bar Table Makeover with Paint & Gel Stain

I’ve had this bar table and matching bar stools since college.

It’s the perfect size for my small formal dining area, but needed a makeover bad. In fact, this whole room needed a total transformation! (See the before and after process here.)


I decided to start with the table. I did the top with General Finishes Java Gel Stain & then painted the base with an ivory paint & added a decorative brown glaze.

Quite a difference! I just love it now!



The process was time-consuming, but I was determined to salvage this old round high-top table.

Looking back, it’s hard to believe I let it sit in my house like this for 5 years!


First, I took it into the garage and sanded the heck out of it. I did the base by hand and used a sander on the top.

I stained the under side of the top piece before flipping over and staining the top.


I sprayed the base with primer spray paint (looked better already!)


Next, 2 coats of ivory paint:


Followed by a coat of glaze. I pretty much followed the same glazing technique I always use – paint a heavy coat of glaze on, let it dry just a touch, then wipe off until I achieve my desired look.


I added some new fancy bar stools from Target and couldn’t be happier with the results.


Update: See how easily we did the wainscot wall behind the table (plus added a mirror wall above it) to make this room feel twice as big as it is!

And two years later, here’s another update: we added gray laminate flooring.


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