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laptop table 05

This isn’t strictly a DIY–I didn’t make the table, but found it at least five years ago at Target. It was the first iteration of this “C” style I’d seen anywhere, though they are relatively common now. It was originally covered in white melamine foil stuff. Eventually, however, that started peeling to reveal something like chipboard underneath. The edges where it peeled were sharp, so I finished the job, then painted it with the leftovers from my bedroom wall at my last place. But with a grey couch, it wasn’t great. Not enough texture or variation between the two to make the tonal thing happen. I’ve toyed with the idea of spray-painting the frame (steel, same basic grey as the top base paint), but never committed, in part because it was often used in tandem with actual black wrought iron cube frame tables I picked up a year or two previously and I couldn’t come up with a color to commit that level of effort to (as a non-driving apartment dweller, spray-painting larger items involves a lot of prep to avoid tagging the neighborhood sidewalks with weird furniture outlines).

Fast-forward to last year or the year before? I could feel a cold coming on as I watched the weather reports and radar maps count down to the first blizzard of the season. I headed out for my last run of the year (I’d love to be a year-round runner, but I’m still trying to figure out what to wear and how not to fall!) and stopped at the grocery store for an appropriate mix of healing foods (ginger! lemon! salad! kombucha!) for my cold and OMG-it’s-a-blizzard!!! foods (mainly junk foods involving “cheese” powders) for my inner Minnesotan. Showered, fed, ensconced in confetti pajamas, with Netflix on in the background, I hauled out my drafting and painting supplies.

laptop table 01

I’m not sure how I decided on equilateral triangles, aside from their base in hexagons –hexagons are my spirit shape and you’ll find them repeatedly in happify designs–but a head cold and Netflix in the background were not the ideal recipe for solving for how to make a perfect hexagrid. Regardless, once the grid was roughly sketched, I pulled out my tiny brushes and acrylics and set to work as the snow flurried outside. Please note my extra festive flannel pajamas. Highly recommend this method of blizzard appreciation/head cold survival.

laptop table 06

I actually went to the edges with the triangles, though I don’t like that as well as when it was more loosely filled in. I blame the amount of fun I had for overdoing it a bit. Since I painted it, it’s achieved a bit of a “patina” thanks to absolutely no finish + continued high usage. I’ve also had to rig it up a bit in its dotage (yes, for a piece of chipboard from Target, this is pushing it)–you may notice the basic design involves a cantilever beyond the two uprights on each side (seen in the back right in the photo above). Over time and with consistent weight on the end, the chipboard started splitting. Luckily I have somehow won the favor of all the most blessed saints and gods of the thrift store, so I solved that for $1.00 (pictures to follow when I get a chance on a sunny day or give up on such things).

I’m not sure if this quite counts as wabi sabi, but it overlaps with my very rough understanding as gleaned from conversational usage. It’s imperfect, transient, in a state of (loving) repair, and it’s those characteristics that make it a pretty useful and sweet piece of furniture.

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