This started as an oak pool table with green felt. If it was living in the garage that would be fine, but since it was going in our house I wanted it to look a bit nicer. This project was so long ago that my husband did it instead of me because I had no idea how to stain something, which is funny to think about now.
We didn’t try re-felting it ourselves, so we hired someone to do that. I’m sure you could find a few tutorials these days on how to do it yourself and save a few hundred dollars.
The stain itself was really cheap.
I don’t have a before picture. The colors looked something like this, but the wood was even lighter.
To stain the table, we took it apart as much as we could and stained the pieces separately. If I was doing this project now, I’d probably just place the table on a huge tarp and stain it without taking it apart, using a brush to dig into the crevices and get full coverage.
Start by sanding off any glossy coating before you stain. Staining is really easy. Just rub stain on with a rag or t-shirt, leave it for a few minutes, then wipe off the excess. If you’d like a really dark finish, General Finishes Java Gel Stain would be a great way to go.
Staining tip: Baby oil (or vegetable oil if you don’t have baby oil) will help get stain off your hands, walls, and tile/laminate/wood floors.
Use a polycrylic top coat (2-3 coats).
So if you see an old, ugly pool table on Craigslist for really cheap…go get it! A little stain and some felt will make it look better than new!