Friday, June 12, 2009

Pygmalion UFO in Transformation

More progress on the UFO. Of course now it is starting to look like the table I had envisioned so I suppose I should begin calling it a coffee table.

Here the top plywood skin is being measured. Appears big enough.

Below : John was judging if his cut had been precise enough.
I apologize for the blurry photo, it's totally my bad. John was very still as he was deep in calibrations. I, on the other hand, must have been moving the camera like a flag in the breeze !
I probably won't be able to get another chance to snap a shot of my man as it seems he is always moving.

Because the top skin is larger than the others it is going to require a complex combination of weights and pressure points.

Hope we can find enough !

John's used most of his smaller clamps and also has brought out the paint section again. After the last fiasco he isn't going to chance an adhesion unhesion problem. I'm sure you know that a gallon can of thick paint has a bit of heft to it.

Below : Another view. Here you can see that John's using one of the big guns, a steel latching case that houses one bad boy of a drill. Even though the drill and its case weight several pounds it wasn't sufficient to hold the plywood skin down correctly. In order to achieve proper contact more weight was needed...a jar of spaghetti sauce, my hermetic jar of river pebbles and a container of vintage marbles (from John's boyhood).

At the other side of the table top we used yet another jar of vintage marbles and our ever trusty boxes of ice cream salt.
Really need to make some ice cream when this project is complete !

Once this last skin is tacked down and its edges sanded then we're faced with the dilemma of how to finish it. The plywood skin is decidedly different in wood grain and tone from the cabinet doors. Jenn of RANDOM LUNACY and Chuck a Stone Design has graciously offered to give me some tips on faux finishes. I thank her profusely as I’ve never done any faux painting. Yes I know, that must be a real shock what with all the home improvement shows on TV (from the Christopher Lowell show to trading spaces to countless shows on TLC and HGTV) everybody must have fauxed something at sometime in their life! Anyway Jenn, I thank you and you’ll probably be hearing from me soon.


  1. Yes by all means let me know and I'll do my best to put a nice how to in writing for you! My specialty is walls (you can check out my website if you want a better idea what I do) but I worked for a gal for a while who did so much wood graining I'm sure I can reach back and pull something out lol! It is looking great so far!

    The edges, are they raw cut? When we built our entertainment center out of ply Matt fused on some veneer to the raw edges & trimmed to size. They became nice & smooth and under paint no one can tell! Keep me posted, looking great!

  2. Jenn - Yes the plywood skin edges are a raw cut. John felt the skin was much too thin to attempt a beveled/mitered edge. Right now we're thinking to fill in any gaps with a wood filler, sand and prime.
    I thought about a solid light color on the bottom portion of the table, maybe use a little darker glaze to emphasize the grooves on the doors, and doing a faux something on the top. Just haven't decided what. Was looking at some techniques from Valspar paints...never used Valspar, are there any paints you prefer or would recommend ?

  3. the ufo is coming along so nicely. what a nice project you have going! i love your glass jars of marbles!!! love them!

  4. Julie - Thank you for noticing the Marble jars, they are special to me as they are from my hubby's childhood.

  5. Hey Anna, sorry I've missed your comment for so long! I must say I am a Benjamin Moore kind of gal but have definitely heard good things about Valspar. Go with the higher end of the product spectrum (this is one area where I will say beyond a doubt the old saying "you get what you pay for" is 100% true!) A tea stain (emphasizing the grooves) is one of my favorite finishes, very elegant & would go well with your other furnishings in the pictures. Antiquing is nice too, if you used a really deep color it would give that contrast you want for the top piece. If you are really getting into the idea of Faux let me know & I'll recommend some great books (can you tell I love it? lol!)

    Can't wait to see what you do, it will be beautiful!


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