Do you remember my blog post about things I think are a worthwhile investment in your home? One of those things was a dining room table and/or chairs. The way I see it, the table takes up a heck of a lot of the visual space in a dining room and so you might as well make it count. Not only that but if you find something that you adore, you’ll almost always find a way to make these ‘special items’ work in a room. I also talked in this post about the art of the ‘high-low’ mix and match. Choosing certain items that are a worthy splurge if you can swing it which elevates everything else in the space.
Anyway, today I’m finally revealing a project that’s been going on behind the scenes for over two months. I was desperate for a new dining table, knew exactly what I wanted but I just couldn’t find it. I wanted a brass base table with a marble top. Seems easy enough right? Well, apparently not. I couldn’t find for love nor money (literally) a table that fit my requirements. I put out a call on both Facebook and Twitter asking people where I might find a table like this that wouldn’t cost me £5k-£10k (which is what these tables seem to go for when I did find them, mostly on luxury homeware sites that I couldn’t dream of affording!).
Now, here is where social media comes into its own. It was my interior designer mate Karen from Making Spaces who suggested on Facebook that I go bespoke. I moaned that I didn’t want to have to through the trouble of sourcing a slab of marble and how it would probably cost me the earth even if did feel like doing it. I know, I’m such a pain. I wanted this to be EASY. Karen made it easy for me. She suggested looking at Andy Thornton who supplies marble table tops. Now, they didn’t have the size I wanted but perhaps they could source one for me? It was worth a shot.
Next, my call on Twitter was answered by the lovely Ursh of Refunk’d. She basically stuck her hand up and said, ‘hey we could make you the base and get it electroplated in brass.’ Wait… what?! Oh my god. So we chatted back and forth, I told her what I was specifically looking for and she said she’d get a price together. Whilst Refunk’d specialise more in industrial style design, they had considered broadening their offerings to include electroplated finishes so my table would be a bit of a guinea pig project as they explored how best to do this.
Now, I was in no huge rush for my table so I was absolutely happy to wait a while to get exactly what I wanted. And this is the beauty of going bespoke. No one in the world right now has my beautiful table. With the assistance of Ursh’s expertise, we discussed the exact size it would need to be, how the marble would be supported on the base, how it would fit together so that any bolts wouldn’t be visible, the thickness of the steel beams they’d planned to use to build it. Every detail was completely customisable.
I got a response back from Andy Thornton as well – sure, they can supply the marble table tops they sell in the size I required. The lead time would be 6 weeks (which again, was fine to wait) and the price was £350. It was an amazing price and the best price I found in further searches.
For the base, because I was a guinea pig and because I was happy to chat about my experience with Refunk’d with you lovely lot here on the blog, Ursh graciously agreed to a discount for the base. She did tell me it would retail at around £1300 if you were considering something similar. So this table would have cost me around £1650, far far less than what some of the tables I had found cost and similar in price to other high-quality tables out there – except this one was exactly what I’d wanted with no compromises.
I received the marble top around the 6 week mark but the table base took slightly longer as the electroplating was done in Birmingham and it required quite a lot of communication between the platers and Refunk’d to ensure everything would go smoothly. Again, this is something I was eternally grateful for as they took care of everything, simply giving me updates as the work progressed. Once the table base was ready, we arranged a delivery time where both Ursh and her partner Nick came around, bolted the table together and disposed of the packaging and then assisted us in getting the marble table base on top (it’s very very heavy!).
They were amazing and I so appreciated that personal touch that you just don’t get with many businesses. I honestly couldn’t recommend Refunk’d enough if you are looking for something a little different – they supply both residential and commercial properties. And now, because I was their guinea pig in terms of electroplating, they can do things a little quicker and easier with their new found knowledge and experience. You’re welcome. ;) Oh and if you want a different plating – perhaps a gorgeous copper or an antique gold or brushed finish – they can now do that too!
So my table is finally complete and I almost can’t believe this beauty is mine. I adore it and I love how it looks with my existing vintage Chippendale chairs. The plating is so SHINY and reflects the light so beautifully. Because I was able to specify the exact size I wanted, it fits the room perfectly and seats six chairs but it could comfortably accommodate 8 if I ever wanted to add a couple more chairs.
A couple other updates in the dining room I figured I’d mention for the eagle-eyed amongst you! I finally got around to spray painting my large round mirror with Montana Gold Gold Chrome spray paint. The original finish was a very dark bronze colour but a quick and simple update brightened it a bit which I think suits the room rather nicely although it’s a little hard to capture it in a picture.
I also replaced the faux plants in my wall hanging planters seen flanking the TV in here with trailing ivy from Mia Fleur.
I really love how they look and you can see a few other of their fauxs dotted around the room.
Of course, my little bar area is just constantly changing but my (real) string of pearls seem to be doing well and hasn’t died on me yet! The secret I’ve found (so far anyway) is to not water it too much! I am only watering it about every 6 weeks right now and it seems to be fine – crazy, right?
So that’s the story of my new dining room table and the updates in this space. A huge thank you to Refunk’d for creating the table base of my dreams and for all their hard work! I also want to give a shout out to Karen of Making Spaces who helped me source my table top and to Andy Thornton who made the process of ordering a custom table top so easy. Now, I’d love to know if you’ve ever gone bespoke with a piece of furniture before and how you found the process! And if you never have before, after seeing my post, would it be something you’d consider? I’d love to hear from you.
In the meantime, if you want to check out Refunk’d, they will be having a pop-up at West Elm in London if you want to check it out on the 15-17th September 2017 and they’ll be exhibiting at the London Design Fair between 21st -24th September 2017. Do tell them I sent you!
Disclaimer: I received a discount on my table base in exchange for my review. All images, words and opinions are my very own and I only work with companies I really like and think you’ll like too! Thanks so much for supporting the brands that support Swoon Worthy!