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I hate to admit it but I’m a little
stubborn er, determined when it comes to something I want. My Momma always said when I was little, if I wanted something, I would be determined to get it. So when I finally found a chicken crate this past September (after searching for what seemed like forever) on a resale site an hour away, I jumped in the car to go pick it up. I knew exactly what I wanted to do with it and I couldn’t wait to turn it into a chicken crate coffee table!
It turns out the owners were downsizing and selling their family chicken farm and this beauty was stuck in an INCREDIBLE barn. The owner was nice enough to give me a quick tour around the barn too! It was such a neat place and being able to see the writing on the old barn doors of how many eggs were collected from the chickens in what months and years was amazing! I love things like that!
I’m pretty sure my husband thought I was nuts when I got it home and drug it into the garage with chicken poop caked on it for God knows how long. I just looked at him with ALL the eyelashes batting at him and said, “Please, just trust me.”
To get started, I removed wire that was around the circumference of the crate with some needle-nose pliers. I put on my gloves and armed myself with a toothbrush, scrubbing sponge (I used these scrub daddy sponges which are legit if you’ve never tried them), dish soap, bucket, a hose, and got to work. I mean I cleaned it. And scrubbed it. And cleaned and scrubbed in every nook and cranny till my fingers were worn. I wanted to make sure I got this baby squeaky clean since I’d be putting it inside the house!
After it was cleaned off, I cleaned it again with a very diluted bleach solution and rinsed it off with water. I don’t know if that really did anything but if nothing else it gave me piece of mind that I was killing whatever bacteria was on there! HA! I wish I would’ve taken a picture of what it looked like before I cleaned it so you could
empathize with my husband appreciate how much of a difference there was!
After I cleaned it, I let the crate dry for a few days and then pulled it out to put a coat of poly on it. I lightly and I mean LIGHTLY sanded it with some 400 grit sand paper I had on hand. I didn’t want to remove any of the awesome lettering on it and I didn’t want to put it through too much since it’s quite old.
After I wiped it down with a cloth, I put down a tarp and started to apply my polyurethane. I used Rust-Oleum’s Spray Polyurethane in Clear Satin (similar here) which I actually really enjoyed. It was perfect to get in all the nooks and crannies and around all the spindles! I applied that to each side and let it dry before I rotated it to spray the next side and inside as well.
After a day or so drying, I drilled pilot holes and attached some casters (similar here) we picked out from Lowe’s. We chose two that locked and put them on opposite corners and two that didn’t lock. I wanted something we can unlock and roll out of the way if we needed to but could keep it secure when necessary. We live in such a small house right now and it’s not uncommon for us to get a workout done in the living room so the ability to move it effortlessly is a necessity.
Now comes the part where we failed. I originally got a piece of glass cut to fit on top of the table. I was sanding the corners and edges down with a sanding stone so it wouldn’t hurt anyone (because let’s be real, kids) when the corner of the glass broke off in my hand! Have you ever been so excited about your DIY project coming to an end when all of a sudden a wrench is thrown in the system!? I am so happy it didn’t break on our kids though!
So, back to the store I went to find something else. I decided to get some plexiglass and had it cut to size instead. It looks just like glass and I don’t have to be so worried it will break on somebody! So it worked out even better! I sanded down those edges with the same fine grit sandpaper just to smooth things out. I finished it off by putting some bumpers (similar here) underneath the corners of the plexiglass so it won’t slide off the crate.
After cleaning and adding a clear coat of polyurethane all of the character just shines through! Even the hubby gave me two thumbs up! He said he wasn’t sure about my vision at first but he is loving it. SAY WHAAAAT?! I think I need to get that in writing! ;)We haven’t had a coffee table in so long and it’s been SO nice to have a place to set drinks when we relax or the ability to decorate it! It’s the little things I tell ya!
Quick Tip though: The employee at Lowe’s said you should definitely use coasters if you are putting anything hot down on the plexiglass as it will yellow.
Grand Total for the DIY Chicken Crate Coffee Table:
Crate …. $20
4 Caster Wheels …. $ 17
Plexiglass …. $20
Bumpers …. $3
Polyurethane …. $9
sandpaper, gloves, bleach, soap, toothbrush, sponges, bucket …. all things I had on hand
I was able to make this DIY Chicken Crate Coffee Table for under $70 (not counting the whole glass fiasco)!
What do you think? I love the thought of turning unexpected items into functional pieces!