Before and After Party: Choo choo!

Hello there! I hope you had a fantastic Labor Day weekend! I got SO MUCH DONE – I labored way too much and rested too little.  ;) I cannot wait to show you what I worked on – squeallllll!! (I’ll show you tomorrow!)

So anyhoo, I’m pretty proud of this project because I built it with my own two hands…I can decorate and saw and craft and organize and drill like no one’s business, but I rarely actually build stuff.

It was FUN. :)

Let’s start with the before…part of our unfinished basement I showed you last year:

The basement has undergone a huge transformation, again. I’m still working on it, but the level of decrapification is high. Like, big time. HUGE.

When I posted the basement last year, we had just started using the space for some of the Bub’s toys. Recently we’ve been moving more and more down there, making this area more of a toy room. I had bought the train table at Goodwill for $10 just to have a flat play space down there – the majority of the train stuff was still up in the loft.

A little over a year ago, back when I was doing the decorating thing, I was at a client’s house with the Bub – most of my client’s had kids and welcomed my kiddo when I was just swinging by. (Big bonus of the decorating gig!) They had a fabulous finished basement, with a HUGE train table set up. My client mentioned that her husband had built it and both the Bub and I were in awe. :)

It was huuuuge! She explained how her husband had put it together and I knew right then I HAD to do it. Well, it only took me a year, but I finally did it! It’s insanely easy, and it started with one large piece of plywood – it was four by eight feet.

I had the guys at Home Depot cut it into three equal pieces for me – four feet by 32 inches each. Then I bought a ton of legs – they had different lengths –- 12, 15 and 21 inches I believe. I figured 15 wouldn’t be quite tall enough, and 21 was too tall, so I got the 21 inchers and cut them down to 18. 

(You could save a TON of cash by just getting 2 by 2’s and double ended screws and creating your own legs – but the ready made legs were way faster to install.)

Because the corners were pointy and a wee bit dangerous, I decided to round them off a bit. I used a spray paint can (because it was closest round thing I could find) and simply put it on each corner, outlined the bottom of the can, then cut it with a jigsaw:


I’m sooo technical. Whatever works, right? :)

My client’s hubby used Astroturf-type stuff for the top of their train tables, but I wanted something a bit softer (and cheaper!), so I just got some green flannel from Joann’s:

With a coupon it was less than $10! I just laid down each table face down and “upholstered” them like I would a chair:

You can see the brackets for the legs here too – you just screw those in, then twist each leg into the bracket. Easy peasy!

That’s it! I was going to brace each table by installing wood between each leg, but they were surprisingly sturdy as is. I did add a leg to the center of each table for a little more support – in case the Bub decided to climb the train tables.

Which he has. :)

The BIG added bonus of these is the extra storage! My original plan was to skirt each one with some fun fabric, but once I got them up I wanted it to be as easy as possible for the Bub…or ME…to slide the bins in and out:

I love these bins by the way! Five bucks each at the Deals store -- they come in fun colors and they hold a ton! LURVE.

Extra bonus – all of the Thomas stuff that was up in the loft is going down here – whoohoo!! My husband son has created quite a collection, so I’m glad to get them all down here where he can really spread them out:

I mean, come one – that is some serious train table goin’ on. Hubby has big plans to get one killer Thomas set up going on these. The Bub may be involved as well.  ;)

And I may or may not be the coolest Mama around right now. This puts me way over the top. Awww yeah.

So my before and after for this month – one wimpy (but cheap!) train table before:

And the my-mom-rules, DIY train tables after:

DIY train tables

I hope to show you the completed basement redo next week. :)

Now it’s your turn! Link up your before and afters! Just a reminder – please link to your post, not your blog! (Folks look at these for months and I want to make sure they get to the right post.)

TDC before and after party

I’ll have the linky open through next Monday. Have fun!!

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