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This project has been….a BIG one. I love to do projects and share them with you, and you get to learn from my mistakes! And if you make a mistake, it’s OK cuz you will learn from them.
This project takes a lot of time and PATIENCE. But ITS SO WORTH IT!!
I started off by sanding down the table. This was unfinished wood to begin with, so this process wasn’t necessary, but I wanted a really clean and smooth surface to paint on.
After I let the table dry… four coats later…I’m ready to start.
You’re gonna need guitar picks…& A LOT of them. Like, at least 200 guitar picks than you THINK you need. Just in case.
Measure the square footage of your surface. (Multiply length x’s width in inches since a guitar pick is about an inch)
This table was 36″ x 20″ = 720 total inches
and it took a little less than 1,000 guitar picks.
I bought my guitar picks in BULK from Amazon
Mod Podge or Wood Glue (I used wood glue the first time, but I was hauling this table around to the workshop and back. I needed something very strong just in case it got bumped. I didn’t want to lose any guitar picks)
NATURAL Paintbrush (for oil based paints/stains)
STEP 1: GLUE OBJECTS DOWN
I used mod podge to glue the guitar picks onto the table.
Make sure you know how you want the picks lined and how they will fit onto your surface before you start gluing it down. You could even draw up a graph, just make sure you won’t be able to see it once the picks are down. I put each row the same way. One row facing upwards, and the next row facing down.
The mod podge goes on white and dries clear. Once you cover the top of the picks with the glue, you won’t be able to see what colors you put down until it dries, so make sure you lay out your picks before you glue them down.
Glueing the picks down took me a total of about 6-8 hours total. I woke up early to work on it before I went to work & after I got Jayli to bed I worked on it until my eyes couldn’t take any more.
BUILD YOUR FRAME
To build the frame, we had to remove the guitar picks I had put on there. Oops!
The next thing to do was to build a border around the table. Build your edge the same height or higher than your materials. This is important because you have to cover your entire surface and objects with epoxy. If your border isn’t tall enough, your objects are going to stick out of the epoxy.
Here we have our pre-cut wood to size ⇑
You can choose to paint them or leave them as is. I like how they look.
We sanded the side and applied wood glue to all four sides
Gluing the wood side pieces on takes two people to make sure it’s flush. One person holds the level piece of wood *we will call this the sample piece* on the side while the other person puts the actual piece of wood on the side of the table, while pushing it up against the sample piece of wood.
It’s better to cut your wood a little longer than you need and sand it off. (Rather than it being too short, obviously)
Here’s a close up of the border. The epoxy will be flush with this.
After gluing the wood down-nail it.
Fill it in with some wood filler and sand it down.
I didn’t get many pictures after this, but you can watch my YouTube video below.
It’s important to get all the dust, dirt and debris or else it will be stuck inside your liquid glass forever! We used an air pressure hose on it and a tack cloth.
Then, we made sure the table was completely level.
We followed the directions inside the box. We used 2 boxes of epoxy because we needed the thickness of the epoxy thicker than 1/16 (the guitar picks are about 1/16 thickness and the epoxy needs to cover them.
After pouring the epoxy on the table, we used a squeegee to level it. And a natural brush (used for oil based paints/stains) for the sides of the table.
TIP! You don’t need a squeegee. Get a board (make sure it’s level) and it needs to be wider than the width of the table. You and a friend stand on opposite sides of the table. Each of you, together, run the board across the table. This would ensure it would be completely flush with the frame.
After you have the epoxy completely spread out and level, you’re going to see bubbles and imperfections. But don’t freak out!
Take a torch and apply heat about 4-6 inches from the table. You will see the bubbles disappear! It’s so cool!!
Then you let your table cure for however long the box says. I let mine cure for about 3 days.
Pictures don’t do it justice! It’s so hard to get a good picture of the glossiness, because it’s clear. Check out my Youtube video to see the whole process and how it looks, too!
The hardest and most time consuming process is just getting everything set up, cleaned off, and leveled. The epoxy is pretty much the fastest and easiest part 🙂