A Simple, Skirted Table

Combine paint, fabric, and a little creativity to make a custom table for any room.
Mary Beth Harrison

Add a painted top and some fabulous fabric to a round wooden table, and this functional piece becomes a work of art.

Designer Gloria C. Jones uses this new application of a fabric-trimmed table in her clients' homes. To get this look, purchase a 30-inch round top and four 29-inch table legs. Attach the legs to the tabletop, and paint the top to complement your room and fabric. Use a staple gun to secure the skirt to the edge of the tabletop, adding trim for a finished look.

"This design gives you the opportunity to take a formal approach or be whimsical--whatever your creative notions are," says Gloria. Let your style be the guide as you create a customized table.

Step 1: Attach four straight top plates to the underside of the tabletop using an electric screwdriver. Then, simply screw the table legs into the plates.

Step 2: Paint the tabletop. For an interesting look, use a faux-finish kit or stencil a design. You can even purchase spray paints that give an aged, crackled appearance. (Tip: If you paint an intricate design, Gloria advises placing the painted detail near the table's edge, so it will show when you add accessories.) Stain or paint the edge a contrasting color if desired.

Step 3: Measure and cut the fabric to fit the table. For a 30- x 29-inch table, you'll probably need 4 to 4 1/2 yards of fabric, depending on its pattern.

Step 4: Secure the fabric to the tabletop using a staple gun. (Staple the fabric either to the table's edge or underneath.) A gathered or box-pleated skirt works well to hide the table legs. If you sew, you may want to gather the skirt first, then staple it to the top. For a no-sew option, gather the fabric by hand, and staple. To add interest to a box-pleated skirt, use a contrasting fabric on the inside of the pleats. (Tip: If the skirt doesn't fit perfectly around the table, simply turn excess fabric toward the inside, and staple in place.) Later, the skirt can be removed and a new fabric added to change the look.

Step 5: Use a glue gun to attach stylish trim, such as braided cording or loop fringe, to hide the staples. For a 30-inch table, you'll need about 3 1/2 yards of trim. (Note: All measurements are for this table size.)