Fix It

Farmhouse Side Table – “Gather”

Honestly, when I first saw this in the store I was doubtful that there was anything I could do to it that would make me like it. It was $5, so I decided to give it a try. It looks like one of those side tables that were popular back in the 80s that held magazines.

how to paint and update an old magazine rack holder

I completely sanded the top down to bare wood, then put some Classic Gray stain on it. I wasn’t thinking and didn’t mix the stain first, so almost no color was showing up.

I dry brushed it with some white and gray and kept adding layers until I liked the look of it and painted the base white with a little bit of gray dry brushing.

how to use stain and paint to get a weathered wood look use paint and stain to create a reclaimed wood look

I found this free printable from Brooke at Start at Home and decided to use that as my stencil. Not that anyone’s going to gather around this tiny side table, but I just really liked the look of the font:)

This was the scary part. I’m horrible at cutting. Like when I go to my kids’ school to volunteer and they ask me to cut things out for them I’m like, “Okay, but you may as well have the 1st graders do it because that’s what it’s going to look like if I do it.” Maybe it’s because I’m left-handed? I don’t know. My writing and cutting are just horrific. I’m just telling you all this in case you think it’s something you can’t do…you totally can! To pull this off I went REALLY slowly. I think it took me about an hour to do this, haha, but it worked! I could really only get a good cut by pulling the X-acto knife in one direction (about 45 degrees down and to the left), so I kept spinning the paper as I cut.

use an X-acto knife to make a stencil DIY

See the oval-ish shapes on each letter? I left a teeny tiny piece of paper to keep those connected to the word…it’s easier than trying to tape down those pieces later.

Tape on the paper. This was another scary part. I wasn’t sure if it would work since I was using paper instead of something more sturdy. I have made my own stencils with manila folders before, but I didn’t want to do that here since the cutting was so much more intricate than anything I’ve done before.

how to make a stencil from paper
Center your “stencil”

I used a stencil brush, dipped it, wiped most of the paint on a paper towel and tapped it up and down to fill in the whole stencil. Do a 2nd coat, or 3rd if you need. Doing multiple THIN layers instead of one thick one will prevent bleeding.

how to make your own stencil DIY
2-3 thin coats of paint

how to stencil on furniture

I think there used to be bars at the base of this piece to hold magazines, but they were missing and I needed to figure out a way to make this functional. Since it had a farmhouse vibe with the wood top, white base and “gather” on top, I thought using chicken wire might work. The packaging it came in recommended wearing gloves to work with it…it’s definitely very sharp!

I measured to see how much I’d need, then cut out 2 rectangles.

how to add chicken wire to furniture

It came with this wire that was securing the roll of chicken wire.

I used it to make an edge where I had cut the wire…

Make a hook at one end


Wrap around a few of the raw edges (look at top of pic) and loop at the bottom
Glue gun in place

If the bars weren’t curved, I would have put another piece of wood to cover all the glue.

For the bottom, I bent the wire underneath the wood and glued it in place.

how to add chicken wire to furniture



All done! Not a bad transformation for this $5 table! The chicken wire was on sale for around $6, but I have enough leftover to make a few more projects, so it was worth it.

Want to save this project?

Have you taken on any projects with chicken wire? Post a picture and any advice in the comments below!

I’m guessing if you made it to the end of this post, you dig the farmhouse style. If you opt-in with your email below you’ll get the email that I send out at the beginning of each month with a password to my entire library of FREE printables, including the farmhouse ones pictured here:


Check out these other farmhouse style DIY projects!

Turn Any Console Into a Farmhouse Console!
Build a Farmhouse Table for around $100
DIY Farmhouse Chalkboard (or mirror)
Easy DIY Shelves for $15!



  1. This is such a cool idea! Don’t knock yourself for being “left handed” Some of the most creative people I know are 🙂

    1. Haha, thanks:) I’ve always tended to be more logical than creative, but the more I practice with the creative stuff the easier it becomes. This hobby started because I wanted to save money on home improvements, furniture and decor; otherwise, I never would have even known I could do things like this. From experience, I can definitely attest to the fact that anyone can be creative and do the projects I do because this type of stuff doesn’t come naturally to me…it all comes down to trying something new and lots of practice! Thanks for stopping by and commenting:)

  2. Congratulations on stepping out of your comfort zone with the intricate cutting, it was obviously worth it. This table is super cute. Very well done.

  3. I love what you did with this little table! The chicken wire is an awesome idea! Pinned to share! Thanks for bringing your projects to share with us at Brag About It this week!

  4. Hey, not such a bad little table for $5 and some chicken wire. Great save, it’s so cute, especially with the “gather” on top. Now if I could find a table like that would be so great, saw one at thrift store few weeks ago butt didn’t get it, doggoned it.
    Will be on lookout for one, wouldn’t mind having different table in living room.
    Don’t know why it is I get urge to change things in Spring. Today when we were cleaning living room I suggested taking carpet out of living room. When we bought our place it had pretty awful carpet I really don’t like. Under it is lino. Have 7×10 good quality shag area rug on top of horrid carpet. Hubs says would be too cold in winter without carpet.
    Hubs had fit when I asked to take carpet out. What a difference would make in room without carpet. Could paint lino white, would be worth the work but hubs doesn’t like that idea, doesn’t like most of ideas I have when it involves anything that means work for him. I would need help moving furniture. Maybe someday if I don’t croak first, not a youngster, lol.
    Anyway love your table. Have wonderful weekend

    1. I feel you…I pass up on furniture and decor at thrift stores all the time and then regret it when I realize I could’ve used it! You’re right, there is something about spring that brings on the urge to change things. I’ve heard a lot of women say that their husbands aren’t on board for projects, too. In our last home I just started ripping the carpet out with the help of my kids. The previous owners had dogs that weren’t well-trained, so I really wanted it gone before we moved furniture in, even though my husband wanted to try and salvage it and just have it professionally cleaned. Would your husband be on board if you hired some neighborhood teenagers to rip out the carpet so he wouldn’t have to do it? Would love to see pictures of any projects you end up doing!

  5. By the way, am lefty also but my cutting problem is arthritic twisted fingers and arthritic wrists. Both hubs and I are lefties.
    Not one of 4 kids is but youngest soon is very ambidextrous. Two of grandkids are. Are any of your kids lefties?
    Be happy

    1. Hi JaneEllen! Sorry to hear about the arthritis…that runs in our family, so it’s likely that I’ll be dealing with that someday as well. Doing medical transcribing and typing for hours on end every day for years has already weakened my fingers and wrists so my grip strength isn’t great. If you’re wanting to do a project like this you could use vinyl or buy a ready-made stencil…I found a bunch of pretty stencils at Wal-mart the other day for around $3.

      So far the only lefties in my family are my brother and I. All 4 kids of mine are right-handed, so when I try to teach them things like how to tie a shoe, sew, etc., it’s hard because I have to do it right-handed to show them how…I’m sure you can relate! The weird thing is that I throw, swing (baseball, golf) and bowl right-handed; I’m not sure how typical that is, do you do anything right-handed?

  6. I love it with the chicken wire and gather kind of alludes to hens and eggs anyway. Great project 🙂 Thanks for sharing it with us at Creatively Crafty #ccbg 🙂

  7. Awesome transformation. Love the addition of chicken wire. Thank you for sharing with us at #HomeMattersParty . We would love to have again next week.

  8. Great upcycle Sara, and pretty darn great results on that stencil I must say! Chicken wire can be most difficult to work with and I love how you used it here, Thanks for sharing your project at Fridays Furniture Fix!

  9. Wonderful repurposing here – I love how the chicken wire gives it so much character! I’ll be Featuring this for this week’s Awesome Life Friday – see you there!

  10. I love the chicken wire at the bottom of this super cute farmhouse style table. What a steal for $5, but of course it took your awesome skills to turn into something I would want to decorate my house with! Thanks for sharing your DIY side table makeover project at the #HomeMattersParty

  11. I love this!! What a great find for $5 and your transformation was amazing – the chicken wire gave it that extra touch! I feel you on the cutting – I’m a lefty and I am horrible at cutting. I used to give all the kids school pics to my mother in law to cut for me! Awesome project for #HomeMattersParty !

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