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Child’s Tea Cart from Repurposed End Table

There’s only one thing better than doing what you love, and that’s when you get to do it with other like-minded folks. Today is Furniture Fixer Uppers day and my blogger friends and I have quite the assortment of makeovers for you. My project begins with this thrifted side table and ends with a child’s tea cart. Let the fun begin!

Vintage Side Table Before | prodigalpieces.com

This cutie-patootie table came home with me and it sat for a bit because I wasn’t quite sure what to do with it. I had many ideas, but I couldn’t pick one that jumped out at me. I had done one like it before as seen in this table post. Sometimes when I need to decide I will bring the piece in question into my home and just let it be there so I can stare at it, walk by it, and let it “talk” to me.

I didn’t have it in the house long when I asked one of my kids what they thought it should be. While still speaking I said, “Ya know, it looks like a mini tea cart to me.” BINGO! That was all I needed to jumpstart my brain.

If you missed my vintage tea cart makeover, it’s truly one of my favorite pieces I’ve done and encourage you to take a peek HERE. That cart is what inspired this creation today – a child’s tea cart. This little side table was so cute with it’s flared legs, curved shelf, and event the pie crust edge. It was perfect for keeping a little one’s treasures at bay while wheeling a cart around. I am a toy nut since I thoroughly enjoy creating them and seeing a child go nuts over them. You can see my past creations in these posts.

DIY TIME

So, here we go… First, I had to add some wheels since carts have wheels, right? ding! Well, the thing that made it a little tricky were those cute legs and their curve. See what I mean?

Curved Table Leg | prodigalpieces.com

*post contains affiliate links so you can find the products I love to use too. (see full disclosure)

That’s nothing that my jigsaw couldn’t handle. I just buzzed off the part that stuck out and tapered it back to the foot and sanded it down. Now, I needed to add the holes to the legs so I could insert a dowel to use as an axle. I found placement of my wheel by measuring up from the bottom of the leg ½” – just enough to get the table off the ground. I used my drill and spade bit to make holes for the dowel axle. You want to make sure your placement is exact so the wheels turn properly, so take your time.Drilling Vintage Table Leg for Wheels | prodigalpieces.com

ASSEMBLY

Once I have the holes, I cut my dowel to length making sure to take into account space needed for the wheel to rotate as well as the width of the wheel. I needed to increase the size of the hole in the wheels I had as it wasn’t big enough. (note: I got my wheels from this site in case you want to DIY a table of your own.) Wood glue was added to the end of the axles and wheels were placed on making sure to check for balance and level. I should also add that I lubed the axle holes and the axle itself with a bit of my furniture wax so everything would turn smoothly.

Checking Tea Cart Wheels for Balance. | prodigalpieces.com

Time to add some more fun! This child’s tea cart needed a handle/towel bar so the wee one can push the cart from there to there. I simply gathered a few bits and pieces and created a handle.

Child's Tea Cart Handle Parts | prodigalpieces.com

I decided to attach it into the outer edge of the table using screws. First, I created the hole by pre-drilling and then also pre-drilling into the handle blocks so the wood wouldn’t split.

Drilling Vintage Side Table for Tea Cart Handle | prodigalpieces.com

MORE FUN

Next, I measured the length between the blocks and added the depth of the forstner bit for each block and cut the dowel to length. So, for instance, let’s say my space between the handle blocks is 12″. I added ½” (¼ + ¼) to the length for the depth of the bit I was using. My total length then wold be 12 ½” for the dowel. Make sense?

Using a Forstner Bit to Create Tea Cart Handle | prodigalpieces.com

Once all was cut and prepped, I assembled with more wood glue and screws and the handle is good to go.

Since the bottom shelf didn’t have a rail to hold essentials while the child’s tea cart was in use, I decided to add my own. This galley rail is often seen on hutches and such to hold dishes on shelving. I must say, I paid way more for this stuff than I did the table. However, I think it is too cute and added so much more function. In order to attach it, I had JC help me cut them into a mitered box on our miter saw while I prepped the table. Attaching them from the bottom with screws is how I planned to make it stable. So, I needed to mark where the rails would sit and then pre-drilled the holes. Then attach with screw from the bottom up.

Adding Tea Cart Rail | prodigalpieces.com

WRAP IT UP

For the mitered corners, I used my nailer and brads to tighten everything up. I love my tools!! #toolsoverjewels is my motto.

Nailing Tea Cart Rail | prodigalpieces.com

Since my table was a cherry/mahogany stain, I did stain the raw wood to match the table before proceeding since I planned to distress, but I didn’t want any bleed through. To prevent that, I used a stain-blocking primer and my Square Brush to seal it all in. It also seals in any odors that may be present as well.

TIME FOR PAINT

First, I painted the wheels because I knew I would most likely get some on the table legs. That’s where I had a little artistic fun that I’ll show you in a bit. For the main part of the table, I used a soft pink.

Beautiful Soft Pink called Tea Rose by Dixie Belle Paint Co. | Used by Larissa of Prodigal Pieces | prodigalpieces.com

I fell in love with that soft pink color when I first used it on my vintage vanity. Then, I used it again on this Ethan Allen table. It’s just so sweet! After the first coat cured, I added another coat and let it dry. Next, I added some panels of vintage wall paper to the shelf and top. Then, I used white wax to seal the paint, as well as soften it and add dimension to the nooks and crannies. Simply brush it on and the buff off with a soft cloth.

I seriously could have when crazy detailing this thing because it’s so fun. However, I reigned in my vigor and decided to add a few elements to those turnings in the galley rail.

Painting Delicate Details on Child's Tea Cart | Larissa of Prodigal Pieces | prodigalpieces.com

THE REVEAL

So fun, right? I hope you love it as much as my kids and I do!

What's more fun that a tea party? One with a child's tea cart made from a repurposed side table for sure. See all the fun details at Prodigal Pieces | prodigalpieces.com

Repurposed Side Table into Little Girl's Tea Cart by Larissa of Prodigal Pieces | prodigalpieces.com

Needless to say I had such fun repurposing that side table into this child’s tea cart. My heart is in creating, especially for kids young and old. Yes, I made just about everything in this picture, including the kids. haha. If you remember a few years ago, I shared how I used many of these food items as therapy while I was pregnant with my little girl that was born too soon. I was on bedrest and created and created to keep myself from going crazy with worry. Tears flow each time I think of her and my other baby we lost as well. But…this is a happy time.

Sweet Pink Child's Tea Cart with Handmade Food and Accessories by Larissa of Prodigal Pieces | prodigalpieces.com

These precious two are my youngest girls and they had such a hoot helping me stage this scene. They couldn’t wait to play. So sweet they set extra settings for their sister and sibling in heaven. Sweet reunion one day!

note: If you love that little tea set, it came with the wicker basket and you can find it available here.

Sweet Childhood Time ~ Little Girl's Tea Party with Pink Tea Cart by Larissa of Prodigal Pieces | prodigalpieces.com

MUSIC

And…to make it even more fun, I created those little cake/dessert stands from a couple metal planters and wood rounds. Aren’t they the perfect size? One more thing…for another treat, I added a music box underneath that plays, “What a friend we have in Jesus”. There has been many a toy that I have made with music boxes, and they are one of my favorite things. I purchased them from the same place I got the wheels.

Music Box Tea Cart for Kid Pretend Play by Larissa of Prodigal Pieces | prodigalpieces.com

Handmade Toy Wool Felt Food Made by Larissa of Prodigal Pieces | prodigalpieces.com

I do believe that soft pink paint is the perfect color for this and the white wax gave it a soft glow I was after. So fun to see it come to life. As much as you may think I should keep this for my girls, we have no need for it as they have plenty of things I have made for them as you can see. So…if you would love to make this your own, you can find it available in my shop. (SOLD)

Shop Prodigal Pieces | prodigalpieces.com

How sweet! This vintage side table was repurposed into a little tea cart for tea party time. See the details at Prodigal Pieces | prodigalpieces.com

I don’t know about you, but I’m ready for a tea party! Care to join us?

INSPIRE

Do pin and share this repurposed child’s tea cart to inspire someone else to think outside those thrift store tables to create something new. It really is fun!

Oh my sweetness! Just look how cute this little child's tea cart is! Made from a repurposed side table by Larissa of Prodigal Pieces | prodigalpieces.com

Don't pass up that thrifted side table! Turn it into a sweet child's tea cart. See how at Prodigal Pieces | prodigalpieces.com

Up next, I’m going to be taking these thrifted finds and turning them into something new – BIG surprise! haha. See what they look like now – head HERE.

Thrifted Finds Before Repourposed Makeover by Prodigal Pieces | prodigalpieces.com

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Furniture Fixer Uppers January 2018 | prodigalpieces.com

  1. Just the Woods
  2. The Interior Frugalista
  3. Girl in the Garage
  4. Confessions of a Serial DIYer
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More fun projects like my child’s tea cart:

Mid Century Credenza Found Curbside Becomes Entertainment Console by Prodigal Pieces | prodigalpieces.comOutdated Side Table Gets a Vintage Chic Makeover Complete with Typography for Sewing Table Fun by Prodigal Pieces | prodigalpieces.com

270 replies on “Child’s Tea Cart from Repurposed End Table”

Love this little cart! If I win, the first piece I’d paint is my small little dresser that I love so much. It’s now painted a soft yellow, (I don’t know why I did THAT!), hahaha. I liked it at the time but the yellow has to go. It has 6 lower drawers, 3 on each side and 3 small drawers across the top. It and a few pieces that I’ve picked up through the years would look so pretty pained a soft frenchie blue with the soft white wax that you seem to love. I’m getting so pumped up now, I hope I win! Thanks for sharing your inspiration! :>)

What an adorable, musical tea cart you made for your girls and Oh, so creative. Who had thought taking an end table and transforming it into a cart. Absolutely love it. I’m sure your girls will get lots of enjoyment having their own tea cart. Your little creations of ‘food items’ are so real looking.
I have a tea cart that could use a whole new make-over and also a large chest of drawers that I would like to repaint so the Dixie Belle paint sure would come in handy.
Thank U 4 this wonderful giveaway opportunity

Oh my stars, you did a GREAT job with this cart makeover, go you!!
I’ve never tried Dixie Bell yet would like to try it on a couple of folding chairs. If I like it there, I have a pyramid cd storage furniture piece that is currently golden oak and could use a freshen up. Might go grey and white with it.
Thank you for the inspiration!

This is simply adorable! So very creative!! I have been wanting to try then Dixie Bell paint. I wouldn’t even know whereby to start. I have a few piece so stashed in my garage and some pieces currently in my house to do a makeover on. My decorating style has change and I have been using paint to avhive the new look/style. Amazing what paint and new hardware can do!

That is just adorable!! Who knew you could make a tea cart out of a side table!! The first thing I would paint would be my kitchen table then my coffee table.

This is adorable! I have a couple of small tables that I am thinking of redoing. I am trying to find the right color. It is hard because Dixie Belle has so many beautiful colors to choose from.

The tea cart is so sweet! My girls would have loved it when they were little. I have a dresser that is waiting to be painted, it is being used as a tv stand with lots of storage, but while functional, not very fashionable.

What a sweet little tea cart and your daughters are darling! I have 3 boys so no pink in my house 😉
I’m working on an end table pulled out of someones trash pile – Trashure! It’s painted in dropcloth and I Looove the Dixie Belle Paint! I “need” to try more colors and the gatorhide.

Oh Larissa, how I would love to spend a year or so as your apprentice. God has blessed you with a very creative mind and ability. This cart is as cute as can be! The color is just right and the rail adds that perfect touch. Some little girl is going to be verrry happy.

A musical tea cart? OH MY STARS, I want to be a little girl again! I have waaay too many projects that deserve this awesome paint, but the first would be my own desktop. I love what ingenuity and paint can do!

This is the cutest makeover ever! The color is perfect and btw love all the felted ‘cake & food’ accessories, and your hand painted design on the spindles.
Too many projects in the queue, not sure which one is next, but would love to try this brand of paint.

This cart is adorable!! I have seen many similar tables at garage sales and would never thought to make into a cart! If I win the Dixie Bell Paint I am going to paint my dining room server. Thank you for sharing your ideas and products!!

I LOVE what you did with this little table. i have a fullsize version with the same style. i want to paint my kitchen cabinets with Dixie Bell

What a lovely tea cart! You are such a genius to come up with this idea from a coffee table. Your girls look so precious and are so sweet to include their sister in heaven. You have such a sweet family and you are truly an inspiration!

hello! I have a small chest of drawers that needs to have the painted “apothecary look” lol Thanks for the inspiration with your creative tea cart; its beautiful!

The pink tea cart is precious! My girls would have loved to have this when they were younger. Since I am new to painting furniture I would start with something small like a picture frame.

You never cease to amaze me! This little tea cart is soooo cute.
I, I too,have an antique dresser,chest of drawers and coffee table to re-do and would like to try this paint. My dilemma is what color! LOL

Love the tea cart. And this is why I need some grandDAUGHTERS. GrandSONS are great, but they wouldn’t appreciate this at all, unless I painted it black and put pokemon or minecraft emblems on it.

I LOVE this idea. I have a similar table and I think I just figured out what to do with it 😉 Thanks for your ability to see new purpose in old things.

Adorable……love the colour! Well, I would paint a cute little wood stool that has seen better days….I too love painting, ever since I was a little girl actually….well done Larissa – thank you for the contest! 🙂

How blessed your children are to have such a creative Momma. Your God-given talents are shining brightly. I just love watching how your visions take shape to become reality. ❤

Aren’t your girls the sweetest little models ! What a great idea to turn that table into a tea cart! I probably would have just left it as a table, since I’m in LOVE with small tables! And that’s what I will probably paint if I were to win the paint. But I also have some chairs that are going to a family of refugees, and those probably should be prettified first! Thanks for the inspiration, Larissa! and the chance to win such a wonderful gift!

What a sweet cart. What little girl wouldn’t want one. Love the pink and the railings on the bottom. I have never used this paint but, after seeing all your beautiful items of so many colors I would love to give it a try. I have a table kinda like yours I have been wanting to redo. Thanks for another great makeover!

Thank you, Bonnie. You will fast become addicted when you do, especially if you’ve tried others. I’ve used so many and felt I’d never find the right one. This truly is it.

You have such a great eye for detail. Thanks again for sharing your skills with us. This tea cart is so pretty. It makes me wish I was young again!

This teacart is pure genius! This table is pretty common so should be easy to find to make one of these adorable carts!

Your Girls are so adorable. You have made such amazing things for them that will always be great memories for them for the rest of their lives.

Thank you, Mary. We actually aren’t keep the cart as they have a whole different play center we made them, but yes, they love that even more. The cart is for sale in my shop. 🙂

Love the tea cart. It is so sweet. My greatgrands would really enjoy this. I have a list of things to paint come spring.

This cart is absolutely darling, you added so much love and detail to it. I also can’t wait to see what you do with the tray and picture.

First, that tea cart is absolutely adorable. What a lucky little girl.
I have a nightstand that my son made at shop in High School. Definitely a beginner piece, but it is sturdy and I need it in my boy’s theme guest room. I want to paint it red and decoupage a map on the top. It will be a great project to try Dixie Belle out. Thanks.

You’re amazing!!! What a darling and clever way to repurpose the end table and it plays music too, come on! I’m in awe that you made the treats too – way cuter than store bought.

What a brilliant idea! The tea cart turned out amazing. The first project I would paint would be a curio cabinet that has seen better days.

Larissa your talent and vision is always AMAZING!! Such a sweet idea and adding the music box, so special. Wish I had a little one to give that to. I love my Dixie Belle paints. Your girls are getting so big 💕

This is an awesome idea! I love the tea cart! My favorite thing to do is repurpose furniture, fix it up, and make it new again! It’s one of my favorite hobbies! You were so creative with this, it has inspired me!

another amazing transformation Larissa!! If I win the Dixie Belle paint – i would love to paint an old art deco console that I picked up last year at a garage sale…I always look forward to see your furniture flips!

I have this exact table sitting in my shop and I’ve been looking at it for a few weeks trying to decide on a color!

I just found your website and I LOVE IT HERE!!! Thei dainty little pink tea car is perfection. If I were to win the Dixie Belle Paints, I would certainly redo a chest presently in my bedroom. It requires some TLC, and I’ve put it off for forever as I have been undecided about what to do with it. Seeing this tea car gives me inspiration to just “gto for it.” Thank you and I look forward to seeing many more of your projects!

You are talented beyond belief! I love the cart – it should entertain little girls for hours. (Not in my family as the youngest girl is my granddaughter, who is 19 and just finishing up her sophomore year in college. I do have a couple of jars of Dixie Belle paint and I love it. I used it to paint 3 thrift store picture frames and then just before Christmas, I painted some small pieces of wood with Christmas themes. They are almost small enough to use as ornaments. That paint is just perfect for crafting and I love to paint . Having major foot surgery next week and will be in wheelchair for 6 weeks but I can wheel myself up to our harvest table to paint things for Spring. I was able to do that when I broke my femur 3 years ago and was in wheelchair for 3 months.

Oh my goodness! How absolutely adorable! I love to see your creations. To answer the question as to what I would paint first, I have some beautiful walnut bedroom furniture passed down to me from my parents. It’s pretty dated and could use a makeover to match my country style bedroom. What a difference it would make. I’ve been putting it off for well over a decade. If I win, this may just be the best motivation to transform the pieces into something I love to look at.

I just discovered your blog – this won’t be my last visit 🙂
Thanks, too, for sharing a piece of your heart about your children that you’ve lost. It always seems to help me a bit when I connect with someone else who knows that particular pain (my son was an adult – different and yet, not so much). Stay strong – and keep creating beautiful things!

Awesome re-do !! Love your posts 😊 And…Dixie Belle Paint is awesome !! I’ve used it a few times & have had good results. Thanks for the giveaway !!

Love your makeover! Such a great idea and it turned out so cute! I would use the paint to paint a wooden dollhouse that I am having fun making over.

That is a cute little tea cart for sure! Wish my girls were still little. I’d be tempted to buy it! Alas, they are “big ladies” now with their own little ones, except they are little boys—each has two and my youngest daughter’s boys are twins who just turned seven. They probably wouldn’t be caught dead playing with a tea cart! Unless it had super heroes or Ninjas painted on it!!

Seriously, I would love to try some of the products that you use. I would just love to win! Thanks for holding this generous giveaway!

Oh, I forgot to say what I would use the giveaway items for first! I have a little half-moon table that was my grandparents’ that I have been wanting to paint, so I think I would start with that.

Such a creative idea and the perfect color! I’ve been wanting to try Dixie Bell paint and would start with a sweet vanity I picked up recently. It is currently a really bad lavender paint job and I think the small beauty is begging for some teal!

This is so sweet! We have all little boys in our family right now (including our first due March 2nd!) So I don’t get to use pink much. But this is absolutely adorable! I especially love the added touchest to the bottom shelf! What is the angle brus you used? I didn’t see a name. Beautiful work 🙂

Thank you 🙂 we are very excited! It’s awesome to make things for little ones… you can just see the joy! Thanks for the link … for some reason my phone doesn’t like to download everything. It’s old Lol

What a cute tea cart! I’ve necer used Dixie Belle brand chalk paint, but I love all the colors. I’ve got a few projects sitting here needing new life… a pedestal table, a wooden clock, and a dresser to name a few things I could use Dixie Belle on! Thanks for sharing 🙂

Larissa, Wow, just look at this adorable tea cart! I love the pink color and hand painted details that you’ve added to it, that really makes it! I am certain this will be well loved and used by a special little one for years and years. I enjoyed seeing your sweet little assistants enjoying Mommy’s fine work!

Seeing your sweet tea cart makes me long for a grand-daughter! Perhaps God will bless me with one some day. In the meantime, I have a golden oak side table that needs a make over and Dixie Belle paint would give it a new life!

Love that tea cart its definitely my style and LOVE that pink color. I have a side table almost identical to the one you just showed. I think I may have to move that up to the front of my project list. I also just purchased a bench that I plan on working on next. Fingers crossed and hope I win! 🙂

The tea cart is adorable! I love the pale pink color. I’m getting ready to redo a kitchen cart that’s currently painted shiny black.

What a sweet tea cart and the DB Tea Rose color matches my niece’s new bedroom….time for me to for a few pieces to join the lighted ballet table I crafted earler. Make it a great day!

Any little girl would remember that forever. I have 2 tables that are very similar. I have been contemplating what to do with them. You have given me some great ideas

What a great idea! And that pink is so pretty! I have a buffet that I would love to paint in Bunker Hill Blue. So many pretty colors to choose from with Dixie Belle Paint!

This is absolutely adorable and you did an amazing job! Thank you so much for the step by step process. I will definitely have to find one of these to make for my girls!

This cart is so cute, and the perfect delicate pink! There is a small accent table I have that I’ve been waiting to paint, just need to find the right color!

I have found this post (and many of your others) very interesting. I have a sewing machine cabinet for a 301A machine that needs a ton of TLC. I have filled in the problem areas with wood filler, sanded it and now—to paint it. The cabinet is nothing special (it is not a Queen Anne cabinet) but the sewing machine is and I want the cabinet to look just as lovely as the machine. I’m building up courage to get some paint and do it.

Hello! Lovely make over! First thing I would paint if I win the giveaway would be a lovely old display cabinet and I think I’d use the pretty pink colour you used on the tea cart. Great blog!

So cute. What little girl would not love to have a cute little tea cart. I have a old beat up desk i would love to finish next.

This little cart is so cute! I’m thinking about tackling or dining room suite that belonged to my great- grandparents but am a little nervous about it. Any tips?

So cute!!! And I would love to try that paint! I use ASCP and would be fun to try something new! Thanks for the chance 🙂

I have an end table that I want to paint and I need to replace the top. Sea Glass is my inspiration. I love it. It looks so beautiful I may redo my bedroom furniture with it.

Larissa that is absolutely adorable! I love all the little details that you added. The “sweet treats” are so precious too!

Just perfect in pink! Making something gorgeous and useful from a thrifted or FREE item & giving it a new life is my favorite thing ever. Thank you for sharing 😊

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