Vintage Chicago Side Table

The harp design on this side table drew me in as it gives a beautiful touch of style to the table. But it didn't look so good when I picked it up; in fact it was still in the process of being restored.


The table was manufactured by John H. Smyth & Co., Chicago. I will guess circa mid-Century give-or-take a decade or so. How's that for being specific?

It was previously painted in blue with a heavy application of antiquing glaze. The previous owner had started restoration on the piece by stripping the top. There was damaged veneer underneath and it looks like the project was given up at that point.

Stripping paint is not for the faint of heart. I used a heat gun to remove most of the remaining paint from the top and sanded the rest. I did not remove the paint from the base since I was planning to paint it with Chalk Paint.

I made a few repairs to the veneer and one of the legs.

A little bit of aging and antiquing glaze goes a long way. This one might have gone a little too far.


I wanted to give the table a tailored and elegant feel. I chose a two-toned color scheme of Coco and Old Ochre (Annie Sloan Chalk Paint).

I chose the color scheme specifically as both colors would work well with the previous blue color as I knew it would peek through during sanding.

I added light-to-medium distressing to the edges.

The interior of the drawer had splotches of the previous blue paint, so I decided to paint that, too. Now the drawer is fresh and clean.

I didn't have similar angled photos for a before-and-after comparison, but I think the two photos below give a general idea of the difference.

Thanks for stopping by!


Popular Posts