I’ve always loved the look and the idea of having a tree stump as a side table. It’s such a fun way to bring a natural element in to your home’s decor. Luckily for me, we had to have a couple problematic trees cut down last year.
We kept the wood from one of the trees so we could eventually chop it up and use in our fire pit, so I sorted through our wood pile and picked out what would become a future side table. I wrapped it in a couple garage bags and let it sit for several months in our garage to dry out and make sure any leftover bugs would eventually die. I actually forgot about it and the wrapped stump sat in our garage for much longer than I had intended. Oops.
Fast forward to a few weeks ago and I pulled it out and started working on it. I didn’t take many pictures of the process because it’s not overly complicated. In a nut shell–sand a ton and use some poly to seal it. My father-in-law used a saw to even out the one end since it was cut at a slant. After that, I used a belt sander on both ends of it and a block sander on the sides.
After getting the sanding to a point where I was happy, we got our air compressor out so I could blow all of the saw dust and any leftover dirt off the stump–you want all of that gone before moving into poly. Then I took a damp rag and wiped it down really good.
I had picked up some Minwax Fast-Drying Poly in satin to apply to the stump. I wanted a bit of a sheen but not high-gloss, so satin was recommended. I applied a total of four coats of poly, which did darken the stump a bit because it’s not a true clear poly. I let it sit out in the garage for a couple more days because of the smell before brining it into the house. Felt feet were also applied to the bottom of the stump so it wouldn’t effect the hardwood floors.
I’m debating whether or not I should paint just the top of it white like this picture because I don’t love the grain on the top. But overall I’m really happy with how it’s turned out! Our guest room isn’t terribly big so this is a great alternative to having a second nightstand in that room.