You may or may not know, but I am not the most handy person. And I’m not a fan of DIY. I’d almost always rather buy. But sometimes you have to do what you gotta do. Since I was put in the position of having to DIY I figured why not share the process with you? In case you find yourself in a similar position as myself I’m going to show you the sofa/console table I purchased and review Retique It, the product I used to transform my table into something I love.
*this post includes affiliate links for your shopping convenience, you can read more about affiliate links by reading my Disclosure*
I love the look of a sofa table. Which is essentially the same as a console table. When I was looking for a sofa table I wanted the look of this very popular console table but I needed a smaller, less expensive option.
After a lot of looking and measuring, I settled on this simple console table. It was the perfect dimensions and I liked the color. I knew I was taking a gamble because it didn’t have a ton of reviews and even less customer photos. But I went ahead and ordered it anyway.
The plus side of this particular console table is that it came already assembled. I needed a bit of a break from putting things together! All I had to do was screw the legs on, insert the lower shelf and screw on the bottom of the legs. Easy peasy!
What I didn’t love was the color. (Here’s a better look in different light) Instead of it being a dark mahogany stain as advertised, it was more like a cherry stain with a lot of red undertones. Which meant it clashed with all of the other wood in this space. I don’t care for cherry toned wood but if we were using this in a different room I may have been able to overlook that.
Since that wasn’t the case, I set out on a fact finding mission of how to change the color of this unit. Now you may be thinking, just paint it or just stain it. Well, in order to stain it, it has to be wood. Although it says it’s wood, I couldn’t be sure if it was all wood or wood composite or what.
I wanted the look of wood and paint wouldn’t give me that. After asking my brother (who does this type of thing) and lots of YouTube research, I decided to try a product called Retique It. Because I didn’t want to sand anything down and buy a bunch of tools, like I’m not a handy girl.
Side note: I think for reasons like this, everyone should be required to take at least one shop class in high school. I didn’t know any girl who took shop in my graduating class and I think there are a few basic things we should all learn to do. I took home economics when I dropped French III because I knew it would be easy and fun and who didn’t want to carry around a flower baby and learn to make pie? Well I burned that pecan pie (never have eaten one to this day) and would have been better off learning something a bit more practical. #hindsight
Retique It is liquid wood. You paint it on almost any surface that you want to stain. Then you stain it and seal it and move on with your life!
After hemming and hawing over it for a couple of weeks I ordered my Retique It kit and it arrived two days later. Super fast shipping! Like, crazy fast!
Here’s what I got in my order:
Water Based Gel Stain in Java (got this for our dining room table)
I knew for this project I wanted it to have a smooth finish so I wasn’t going to bother with the wood graining tool. And to be honest I still don’t know the difference between the oil based stain that came with the kit and the water based gel stain that I got for our dining room table.
Since I knew I was going to do two projects, I went ahead and picked one that I thought would work for our table top.
I laid down an old sheet we didn’t need anymore and got started. After I wiped down the sofa table ( just with multipurpose cleaner, I didn’t have anything heavy duty) I applied the liquid wood in long sweeping motions.
Applying the Retique It liquid wood was very easy. Of course the flat surfaces were the easiest. I found so many videos of people using Retique It on tops of dressers and whatnot but not many of them doing a whole piece with grooves and crevices.
As you can see, I did this inside. These products are all safe for indoor use and there was no real odor from the liquid wood itself. I allowed it to dry for two hours.
Then I started the staining process. Whew! This by far was the most tedious aspect of this project. I applied the stain using the sponge brush they provided and wiped it off with the rag they supplied as well. I did this in sections and allowed the stain to sit about five minutes before I wiped it off.
I did stain the top once more, this time only leaving it on for a couple of minutes before wiping and I liked the color payoff much more. This picture was taken at night so there’s a lot of overhead lighting impacting the color.
What I didn’t like was how the drawers looked. It was very hard to wipe the stain in a uniform way for it to not look like I was wiping it back and forth. Which is what I was doing.
The legs also weren’t the easiest to do and you can see some got stained a bit darker than others.
I did use the paint brush they provided to help even out some of the stain after it was mostly dry. It helped but not by much.
So the next morning, I went to Ace Hardware to get a few supplies to finish the job. Recently they had sent me a coupon for $10 off since we just moved and I’m glad they did. Thanks to that coupon I spent under 50 cents for what you see here!
I wanted to get more cloths to wipe up stain and a smaller detailed brush to get into the crevices a little better. Then I got the larger brush to apply the sealer.
After I attempted to fix the drawers to the best of my ability, I added the poly sealer. It’s not perfect but it’s a whole lot better than where it started!
Back to the odors…the stain does have an odor, as most stains do and so does the sealer. Neither which would be too much to deal with if you’re in an open space.
The sealer took a couple of hours to dry completely and the directions state to let the furniture piece sit without adding anything to it for a few days. That was difficult because I was itching to decorate it!
And here’s the finished product! Eventually I want to change the knobs, but it’s not high on the priority list. Unfortunately I took these after pictures when I didn’t have the best daylight.
Not perfect, but I do have a sense of pride that I made it look a lot better. 🙂
All in all, I’d say this was a fairly easy project, even with the hiccups I had. I’d recommend using a drop cloth instead of an old sheet. This was a pretty thin sheet set and the stain went through it easily. I was able to catch that and clean it up quickly but a plastic tarp would be a safer bet.
The next project will be to turn our faux marble top table to a wood top so that it can more closely match the legs and chairs. I won’t dedicate a whole post to that but I will share the update here on the blog. We may go ahead and tackle that this weekend before the kids start school next week and the table becomes command central for both work and school from home.