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DIY: Modernize A Table with Paint and Tape!

Have you ever looked around your home and thought you wished you had some more unique and modern pieces instead of just your same old boring stuff? I have! Did you know that for a lot of furniture, some tape and a little paint can go a long way? It’s true! Check this out…

DIY painted table with paint-dipped legs

I got this little table (and its twin sister) a few months back because I’m a total leg girl, and these legs rock – long and lean…just the best! So I brought them home with absolutely no idea what I would do about the boring (and let’s face it, not so pretty) top until I decided to paint it. Add in a few late-night Pinterest sessions and an idea started to brew… Let’s look at the before:

round table before

To transform a table like this, you really only need some very basic things and about 1-2 hours of your time (and that includes drying time in between coats).


  • Painter’s tape
  • Measuring tape
  • Mineral or chalk paint in your choice of color
  • 1 or 2 foam brushes
  • Utility knife


Measure each leg so you have the same height for the paint-dipped look. I went about three quarters of the way up the leg, but there’s no right or wrong here!

measure height for painting

Paint each leg with two coats and you’re all done here! Tip: if you can, turn your table upside down for this part – it makes life way easier!

tape and paint table legs


Start by taping your tabletop. I decided on a design, and definitely kept it pretty simple by simply starting with adding tape about two thirds of the way across the table like so:

taping off tabletop for painting


This is where you can decide to either leave it super simple as is or create a geometric pattern like I did. Start by adding a piece of tape to the ‘top’ of your table, and do so on an angle.

Continue to add strips of tape side by side until you are about two thirds of the way down. Don’t worry, this will all make some sense soon!

taping tabletop for striped pattern


Now we’re going to change direction! You can either completely switch the angle of your design, or do what I did, which was to simply make the new design perpendicular to the first piece of tape.

Continue to add strips side by side again until you reach the first design.

adding tape to create a pattern


Now you get to peel back some tape! Start at the top again and begin removing every other piece of tape until you reach the point where the two designs meet.

Now remove the tape from the second design and you’re left with this awkward mish mash of tape in the middle!

remove every other strip to create stripes


Now grab your utility knife and cut off the spots that should not be covered with tape to make your design and simply peel them off!

use utility knife to cut excess tape


Now that your table is all taped up, you get to paint! Apply thin coats of paint all over the tabletop. Using a thin paint is fairly important here because you get very minimal bleeding through the tape.

cut excess tape off at edge of table

At this point you can also start cutting off the tape that is hanging over the edge of your tabletop.

cut excess tape off at edge of table

Finish painting over the entire surface of your tabletop with at least two coats of paint.


This is the fun part: removing all of the tape! Use your utility knife to peel up the edges and carefully peel all of the strips off. Do this while the paint is still wet, otherwise you might peel up some paint with the tape!


This may be an unnecessary step for you. Look at your table and decide whether or not you love the design. I decided I did not, so I added one more step.

After adding the last piece of tape, paint that lonely, long strip with two coats as you did before and peel off.

optional: paint over large strip on table

And ta-daa!!!  You’re done! Now you can make use of this table and feel proud of how super cool it looks!

remove final strip of tape

I used mine in a little reading/writing corner since this table is quite high, and it makes the space just so much brighter.

view from above of striped table

You can see how a table like this might be handy for lots of other places, too, which is great – I love a multifunctional piece! An entryway or living room would be great places for something simple and leggy like this table.

finished painted table with accessories

The pattern is subtle once there are things on the table, but I love that it becomes part of the decor.

Ok, one last close-up look and I promise I’ll let you go hunt down your own little table to make over!

close-up of finished painted table

Now go on, get to work! You can do this with practically any old table – regardless of its shape. Geometric patterns are easy to figure out with tape, so go and get creative!

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