I wish I had gotten some good before pictures of the table. But by the time I remembered to take pictures, we were well into the project. I snapped what pictures I could with my phone, and then started bringing my camera along.
This shows the natural wood color and then the color of the stain we chose. I liked the natural color, but we wanted something a little darker.
I don't know if you can tell, but the legs hadn't been stripped of the original finishing yet. That was the color of the whole table before we got to it (with plenty of orange and pink spots on the top).
The master at work. I wish I could say we worked on it just as much as he did, but that would be a lie. Most of the finished project is Rich's doing.
Oops. We thought we were done with the table but then noticed these little spots, the ends of the tracks where the table expands.
Before and after of the chairs. We considered trying to refinish the seat of the chairs to match the table, but that seemed like more work than it was worth. So we just painted the chairs entirely black. I think it turned out pretty well.
The finished product! I finally have a nice kitchen dining set. It was a lot of work, but it was worth it. And so much cheaper than buying a new set.