Prison coffee table gets a makeover

This was one of the first projects I had done so no step by step tutorial but still great to share and to give others ideas. I saw this prison coffee table on my local for sale site for $10.00 and loved the design and thought I could give it a makeover. It is called a prison table so the lady told me but someone must have broken out because so many of the bars were broken or missing. The photo above was taken 4 years after I first gave it a makeover and one of the bars broke again, thanks to the kids.

Coffee Table Gets a Makeover

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There were a lot of the “bars” broken and missing but I wanted to keep the look because this is what attracted me to the table in the first place.  This was a quick makeover.  I sanded down all the wood to remove all the old stain and varnish.  I am not a big fan of the light brown furniture and I wanted to stain it using cedar stain.  I went to my local hardware store and bought a length of dowel. I cut the dowel to size and glued them back into the existing holes in the table.  The table top from the table lifted up, but it was in 3 pieces where it had split over time.  I used wood glue to join them back together. To hold the table together while the glue dried I nailed a plank of wood to the underneath and pulled the wood together using ratchet straps.

I stained all the wood using cedar stain which was a big job trying to get into all the nooks and crannies.  To seal the bars I used a clear polyurethane spray which saved so much time. The tabletop glued back together great but the top looked a bit boring.  I had some ceramic tiles at home that I was going to use for another project but I thought I would try and inlay them into the top. 

Coffee Table Gets a Makeover

I used a wood router (Only my second time using one) to cut out a channel for the tiles to sit inside.  But I made a big mess and the lines were skewed.  My son jumped in and made the slots a bit bigger and I added an inlay.  Which was a plastic stripe with a design on. I am not too sure where it came from or what it is for.

Coffee Table Gets a Makeover

This was my picture doing a test trying to come up with ideas to fix the mess.  I have come a long way in the past few years.  Here is one of my latest projects.  I restored an antique Dresser that should have gone to the tip but it turned out so awesome I sold it instead.

Coffee Table Gets a Makeover

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Coffee table makeover
Prison Coffee table get a makeover

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