Magazine article Sunset

Your Child Can Build This Table

Magazine article Sunset

Your Child Can Build This Table

Article excerpt

With a little help from you, of course

MY KID MADE THIS TABLE. Well, sort of. Using only his imagination, a $5 garage-sale castoff, around $35 worth of supplies, and a little help from his dad, Rollie designed this tile-topped table, which now sits proudly in our home. He says it was easy. The hardest part was picking out all the tiles and arranging them on a cardboard grid. The design work complete, he left me to put it together.

Since no two kids are the same, no two child-designed tables will be the same, although the techniques used here can be adapted to just about any table configuration. Much to my relief, Rollie's design was elegant in its simplicity. Your Michelangelo (the artist, not the turtle) is just as likely to make the project delightfully or frustratingly complicated by introducing different-size tiles, using tile edging, varying grout joints, or experimenting with mosaic. Depending on the design, you can complete a table in about four afternoons, including time for paint, adhesive, and grout to dry. When you're finished, you'll have a table that should be impervious to just about anything a kid can throw at it.

HOW TO DO IT

Once we measured our garage-sale table, it was off to the tile store to select our colors. Rollie liked the foot-square sheets of roughly 2-inch tiles (each sheet has 25 tiles) that came in a seemingly limitless array of colors. I liked the fact that the needed tools and supplies--trowel, float, sponge, adhesive, grout, tile spacers--boosted the cost of the project to only about $40. …

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