Beer Garden Table Makeover and Alfresco Thanksgiving

An antique beer garden table gets a modern makeover, plus a table decorating idea for an alfresco Thanksgiving.

If this post had a theme song, it’d be “Back in the Saddle Again”.

It has been SO much tougher finding the time and energy to complete a project than I originally thought it’d be with a baby in our lives now, but I didn’t realize just how much I missed creating something until this weekend.

A few months ago, when Robert, Olivia, and I took a summer trip to the Smoky Mountains, we stumbled upon this old German beer garden table set tucked away in an antique shop.

German beer garden table before

And Robert instantly fell in love and vowed this would be his project to give a quick update. Because apparently, anything with the phrase “beer garden” in its name has his immediate attention. 😉

So while I was hanging out with baby Regan last week, Robert prettied this baby up out in the garage.

Supplies Used: (Some affiliate links are provided below.)

How to refinish an antique beer garden table

The wood top on the table and benches had a very yellow stain on it, and the metal legs had peeling dark green paint.

1. Using the belt sander, he removed the yellow stain with a coarse grit belt moving in the direction of the grain.

2. Then, he smoothed the wood using a fine grit belt.

How to refinish an antique beer garden table and benches set

3. He didn’t take any pictures of the next steps, but he flipped the table and benches over to prime and spray paint the dark green metal legs white.

4. And for the wood, he used the Minwax wood conditioner first. Then, following the directions on the cans, applied two coats of the Minwax wood stain in Special Walnut.

You can see more stain colors and tips for staining wood in this post, if you need it.

5. To keep the wood protected from weather, since this beer garden set will be staying outdoors, he applied a couple of coats of the Minwax polyurethane.

And now we have our own little beer garden / outdoor dining area in our backyard!

Thanksgiving alfresco beer garden table

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I got to play around with it out here by setting up a simple outdoor Thanksgiving table, since we’re usually a casual crowd for holidays anyway.

Thanksgiving alfresco beer garden table outdoors

I know for sure this cute little table is going to see many summer cookouts and casual weekend hangouts in the future.

Outdoor Thanksgiving beer garden table

To add a little ambience, we strung up this set of solar powered string lights too. We just bought two wooden dowels from the hardware store, stained and polyurethaned them like the table, and used a mallet to drive them down into the ground a couple of feet.

To suspend the string lights, we just stapled the strand to the tops of the dowels. If you don’t have soft ground to drive the dowels into, you can use this method too using a large planter, concrete, and garden soil with plants like we did on our patio at our old house.

Fall beer garden table alfresco

Outdoor beer garden table for Thanksgiving

For the table decor, I just tossed a plaid throw blanket on top as an inexpensive tablecloth with a couple of pumpkins I swiped from our porch, a couple of thrifted brass candle holders, and an old milk glass vase I had with fall branches. Ta da!

Beer garden table with string lights for fall

Just add beer. Or Thanksgiving dinner. One of the two… or both really.

Outdoor Thanksgiving beer garden table with string lights

After being cooped up for a few weeks getting adjusted to life with a baby, a little time to decorate and enjoy the pretty fall leaves outside was exactly what I needed.

I’m so thankful for this hubs of mine who worked his tail off to bring this beauty of a table back to life.

An antique beer garden table gets a modern makeover, plus a table decorating idea for an alfresco Thanksgiving.

If you want more fall decorating ideas to prepare for Thanksgiving, you can see all of my past ones here.

Or you can see all of our past furniture makeovers here.

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  1. Very nice makeover, but not an antique. I lived in Germany for 11 years and you can find these sort of tables, old and new, all over the place. I wish now that I bought some to bring home!