Published on May 7th, 2012 | by Jules Yap


Hack a country kitchen style dining table

Materials: Svalbo table, water based wood stain, water based white paint, water based finish

Description: I have been looking for a country style table for a while but they were too big or too expensive, so I bought a Svalbo table from Ikea with a precise idea of the result i wanted.

I’ve sanded all the parts 3 times with a 80 sandpaper until the transparent vanish was gone, then the top has been treated with 2 coats of a water -based preservative wood stain in antique walnut colour. Sanding carefully all the surface is really important because otherwise the wood stain will not be soaked up.

I’ve painted legs and frame with 2-3 coats of white paint then, once dry, all the parts were painted with 2 coats of transparent finish (3 coats for the top).

The table has been assembled, I’m very happy with the result, it matches perfectly my INGOLF chairs, also from Ikea. Hope you like it.

~ daniela, Italy

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The Author

Jules Yap

"I am Jules, the engine behind IKEAHackers and the one who keeps this site up and running. My mission is to capture all the wonderful, inspiring, clever hacks and ideas for our much loved IKEA items".

25 Responses to Hack a country kitchen style dining table

  1. Lori Mageau says:

    What brand of stain and paint did you use and there colors called want the white to match the chair like you did

  2. Nicola says:

    Did you use a primer on the table top before staining?

  3. Jenna Cody says:

    Would I be able to do something like this with the NORBO folding table? It says its solid birch (or at least it says it’s solid wood). Would it be possible to do something like this without sanding? I ask because we don’t own a sander, I’ve never sanded anything before, and I’m kind of nervous about it.

  4. daniela says:

    hi everyone, for the last questions you made:
    veneer/particle board tables are not suitable or this kind of treatment because actually there’s no solid wood under the veneer, pay attention to the label before buying your table, vika byske is ok but vika amon doesn’t. The norden gateleg table is sold in two versions, the birch one is made by solid wood, the white one is made by particle board (not good), stornas seems to be suitable, i’ve sanded the legs because this way the paint hold on better, if you don’t want to sand you should paint the legs with a bonding primer.

  5. Amy and Troy says:

    We just got the Stornas table (http://www.ikea.com/us/en/catalog/products/40176846/) and want to paint the legs white. We got the white Ingolf chairs to go with the table. Did you sand the legs of the table before painting them white?

  6. Anonymous says:

    This is beautiful, what a great job you did! I went to my local Ikea yesterday here in Canada and purchased the Stornas table (all pine, with antique finish) and it looks to be the same or similar to your Svalbo table. I am planning to refinish it using your example!

  7. Anonymous says:

    I’m thinking of staining a vika tabletop (61 by 29.75) and using the ingatorp base but the ingatorp dimensions are 61 by 34.25 so wonderingnuf this will work. Does anybody know the frame width of the Ingatorp or have ideas on this? Thanks a lot!

  8. Anonymous says:

    I am also thinking of getting the Norden gate leg table but want to stain it a medium oak. Let me know how it works for you. Thanks

  9. Anonymous says:

    Hi Daniela! Your work is remarkable. Thanks for sharing. I have the Norden gate leg table and would like to stain it. It has the birch veneer on it. Did your svalbo have that? I think I’ll just have to sand down evenly & deeply to make it work… thanks again!

  10. daniela says:

    I don’t know if it is still in the range but try to have a look at your local shop, maybe they still have some pieces there :-)

  11. Anonymous says:

    Hi, I just looked up ikea website but I didn’t find that specific table. Is it still available? Maybe it has a new name?

  12. daniela says:

    the finish helps you to protect the table from damages, i’ve used 3 coats of finish on the top, paty maybe 5, i’m trying to pay attention to the bumps using always a tablecloth under the dishes and glasses, after all this is an homemade work, i guess it will get damaged easily but that’s the beauty of a country table! For the toxicity of the paint i would prefer a water based one, remember to match the products you use, water based stain=water based finish, acrylic stain (do they exist?) =acrylic finish.

  13. Anonymous says:

    Dear girls I had some doubts: wouldn’t the wood stain or finishing get damaged from cleaning after daily use without a tablecloth or from things such as kneading bread on the bare wood? And about this last, could it be toxic even if I choose a water base finishing?
    Thanks again :)

  14. daniela says:

    paty your table is awesome!!!! you’ve done such a good job, it’s perfect even in the sides of the top. My compliments to you and to your boyfriend!

  15. Becca says:

    This is just brilliant! Thank you for the idea and for providing all the details. I have the same chairs and a similar Ikea table that has a bad stain on the top. I think this will work perfectly to hide that stain. Plus it will make the table fit in better with all my antique furniture. Thanks!

  16. Paty says:

    Hey Daniela, I was so inspired by your DIY than I did it for my table too! You can see it here : http://www.cinqetdemi.com/2012/05/pimp-ta-table-de-cuisine/



  17. daniela says:

    you’re welcome :-)

  18. tereza says:

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  19. Anonymous says:

    I hadn’t thought about choosing solid wood rather than particle board before but you’re more than right. I think I’ll opt for a Svalbo since I’m looking for an extendible table. I’ve seen Ingatorp, but I prefer a simpler line and this one it’s already lacquer so we go back to the Bjursta problem.
    Your suggestions have proved very useful.
    Thanks again,

  20. daniela says:

    Hi, i think bjursta is not suitable for this kind a project, is made by particle board covered with a thin thin layer of birch veneer, it is not a single piece of wood that can be sanded and treated with the stain, i’ve seen it in the store but i thought it wasn’t a good choice (if you want to modify it).
    Try with a solid wood table BJORKUDDEN, NORDEN, SVALBO, you will only need to sand down the clear lacquer before using the stain, EKENSBERG and INGO doesn’t have lacquer, less effort :-)
    Have you seen the new INGATORP? Nice country table in white (top is made by fibreboard i guess is not possible to treat it with the stain).

  21. Anonymous says:

    Hi Daniela, what would you think about buying a white table (such as Bjursta white) and treating only the top the way you did? Would the more finished look make the coating more difficult?
    Thank you,

  22. daniela says:

    i’m very happy you like the result :-)
    All the paints were water based and the finish too, i’m not an expert but i think that you can’t use acrylic and water based products together.

    Just a few tips:
    - try to sand the top always in the same direction (following the natural wood grain from left to right or right to left XD)

    - same tip for the wood stain and the finish application:i’ve used a brush following the natural wood grain, be careful with the last coat of finish, i have made a mess and now if you look the table against the light you see some brush stokes in the wrong direction!!

    - be sure to sand in an homogeneous way, if you are using a sander as i did, use the same pressure all over the surface, the pressure you apply determines how much the wood stain will be soaked up.

    - i can’t advise any brand of paint, i don’t even remember what i’ve used, just ask for wood paint and waterpoof finish in a good hobby shop (DIY shop? i don’t know how to translate it in english).

    - always start with the inner parts and the bottom side, you never know :-)


  23. It’s wonderful! I’m going to look into this option. You’ve done a great job – love the shade of the top teamed with the white. It looks really authentic…I second OC Breeze’s request – if you have further tips as to what you used, would be really helpful, thanks!

  24. OC Breeze says:

    Was the transparent finish also water based? Can you share which brands of paint, stain, and transparent finish you used? Thank you, it’s lovely!

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