Mid-Century Tree Trunk Table
This DIY started a few years ago (yes, it has taken me that long to complete it). I was living in Texas when my neighbors had cut down a rather large tree in their front yard. If you know me at all, you know that tree trunks are like gold to me. I don't know what it is about them, but every time I see one I am temped to stop, pick it up and re-purpose it into a beautiful piece of furniture. You may have seen this project that started my infatuation some time ago. So, when I saw these gorgeous chunks of tree trunk laying in the neighboring yard, I couldn't help myself. I thought, "How neat would it be to have a piece of a tree that lived on the street of the very first house I bought?" But, there was a problem. Just one chunk of this wood was so large and heavy that I couldn't move it. I thought I could try rolling it down the street a mere four houses away and into my garage, but that idea was shot the second I tried it. Somehow, some way, with the help of a few boards to use as a lever, my husband (then boyfriend - that's how long I've been meaning to complete this project) was able to lift it into the back of our SUV and bring it home. I was a happy girl.
While this enormous chunk of wood was drying in our garage, life changed with plans to move to the west coast. We decided it was best to sell anything and everything that we didn't need to take with us - a fresh, clean slate if you will. But, there was this tree trunk that I was now emotionally tied to because we were moving away. In order to get it out to San Diego with us, we cut off roughly a two inch slice with a chainsaw and recycled the rest. It wasn't going to have the same impact that I had originally hoped for with it's enormous size, but having a portion of it was better than not having it at all. Now that the wood had a chop job, it fit quite nicely in the trailer with the rest of our belongings that we towed to our new home in San Diego.
And here we are now - this piece of wood that I held on to for so long has finally been finished into a table! After sanding it down for what seemed like forever (my hands would practically vibrate for days after handling the sander), I had to ask for help. My father-in-law, a very project driven person like my husband, gladly offered his time. And I am so thankful he did because he got the thing level. After that my husband and I both sanded it with various grits of paper, increasing in number, to really bring out the grain. I ordered some steel mid-century style hairpin legs and spray painted them a charcoal black color. Then, to finish it off we used a poly-resin mix that we had left over from this build project to seal the wood and really make it shine. And the result is beautiful.
The total cost for this project and supplies needed was minimal. The only cash I spent was on sandpaper ($15), spray paint ($7) and the three handmade steel legs ($83). I couldn't tell you how many hours were spent sanding between three people, so thank goodness the labor was free. However, to have such a unique momentum for only $105, it has turned out to be pretty priceless to me. For now it sits in our guest house and will receive some much needed styling as that room comes together. It's the most interesting thing in that space currently. And though it's not perfect, it is handmade and I love it. Photos don't do it justice either, so I suppose you'll have to come visit and see for yourself. I'm glad that after so much time had gone by I stuck with it and decided to keep a little gem from where my first home was - maybe this thought will inspire you to do the same.