Image Transfer On Duncan Phyfe Style Coffee Table

Have you heard of IOD (Iron Orchard Designs) image transfers for furniture? They instantly add such beautiful vintage detail to painted furniture. I'd been itching to give them a try when Mr. Frugalista came home with the perfect piece of furniture to try it on. I'm excited to show you how easy it was to add an image transfer on a Duncan Phyfe style coffee table.

Duncan Phyfe Coffee Table IOD Image Transfer

Besides the Chatellerault IOD transfer, I also tried two other new products on this piece that I'm definitely adding to my paint supplies arsenal. When I find products that I like, I can't wait to share them so you can try them too and I show you how.


Image Transfer on Duncan Phyfe Style Coffee Table


Image Transfer On Duncan Phyfe Style Coffee Table

Before I get into the how-to, today is one of my favorite days of the month. It's Furniture Fixer Upper Day where myself and five talented furniture painting friends come together to breath new life into six pieces of furniture. Look for the links to the makeovers at the bottom of this post.

For last months challenge, I did Mom's favorite Chair Makeover With Raised Stencil.

I've included a Materials List further towards the bottom of this post. It contains affiliate links for your convenience so you can see what products I used or recommend to make this project. See my full disclosure policy.

Duncan Phyfe Style Coffee Table Makeover

Mr. Frugalista found this Duncan Phyfe style pedestal coffee table on Kijiji, a Canadian online buy & sell website and this is what it looked like before the makeover. 

Duncan Phyfe Style Coffee Table Before Makeover

That lovely smooth top was just begging for a beautiful graphic!

Duncan Phyfe Coffee Table With Parisian Image Transfer

Let's get to the how to


Prepping the coffee table for paint

Because this table is mahogany, the tannins in the wood will most likely bleed through the paint, especially because I'll be painting the table white. The top has a shiny laminate finish and needs a light sanding to give the paint some bite. Sanding the wood will open the pores and guarantee paint bleed so the wood needs to be sealed first.

Duncan Phyfe Coffee Table Stain Blocker

If you've been reading the blog long enough you know how I always prime mahogany or cherry wood with shellac. I tried something new this time using BOSS Stain and Odor Blocker from Dixie Belle Paint Company. It lived up to its name and showed those wood tannins who's boss.

Cleaning the metal claw feet

The metal claw feet were tarnished and dirty so the second order of business (or perhaps should've been the first) was to bring them back to their brassy glory. I used Bar Keepers Friend, an old toothbrush and wet rag. It took a little elbow grease but got the job done.

Duncan Phyfe Coffee Table Cleaned Claw Feet

Painting the table

After the BOSS stain blocker dried for about an hour, I painted the table Buttercream (a warm white) mineral chalk paint from Dixie Belle Paint Company. It took two coats to cover the dark wood. For a nice smooth baby bottom finish, I sanded between coats with fine 220 grit sandpaper.

Duncan Phyfe Coffee Table Painted Buttercream

Once the paint was dry, I ran sandpaper along the edge of the top, legs, as well as the details on the pedestal base for a lightly distressed finish.

Playing with artisan powder

Here's another new product I've been itching to try and I completely lost track of time while playing with this gorgeous French Sage Artisan Powder from Prima Marketing. A little goes a long way and it's applied with a brush.

Duncan Phyfe Coffee Table Sage Artisan Powder

Artisan Powder Tip:

Wear old clothes and protect your work surface before using this product because it has the consistency of loose powder (like makeup) and the colored dust lands where it may. I used a small art brush to apply the powder in the grooves along the edge of the top and the pedestal base.

Duncan Phyfe Coffee Table Pedestal Base

Adding an IOD image transfer

For the top of the table, I used the Iron Orchard Design Chatellerault IOD Image Transfer. It comes with three pretty Parisian carte postale colored transfers that can be used together or separately. I picked the largest transfer for the Duncan Phyfe coffee table top.

Duncan Phyfe Coffee Table Furniture Transfer

Image Transfer Tips

  • Apply the transfer to a matte finish, like chalk painted furniture.
  • Important: Wait for the paint to cure at least 48 hours before laying the transfer.
  • Make sure the painted surface is free of dust and debris.
  • Keep the protective backing on the design while aligning the graphic with the furniture.
  • Hold the transfer in place with low tack tape along the top of the transfer.
  • Carefully peel back the protective backing.
  • Tape the bottom of the transfer so it doesn't move while you work.
  • Make sure you eat your Wheaties because you're going to get an arm workout. With the handy tool that comes with the transfer, rub over the design until it becomes transparent.
  • Carefully lift the plastic to check where parts of the design may not have transferred and keeping rubbing until it becomes transparent.
  • Once the image is transferred, run a clean hand over the transfer to ensure it is firmly attached.
  • Protect the image transfer with a water-based sealer or wax specifically for chalk paint.
Duncan Phyfe Coffee Table Image Transfer Prep

Protecting the finishes with clear coat and wax

To seal the image transfer and protect the painted table top I used Gator Hide, a clear matte water repellent sealer from Dixie Belle Paint Company.

To apply it I used a synthetic paint brush in long uninterrupted brush strokes from one end of the table top to the other. I applied two coats with a light sanding in between with 220 grit sandpaper. Use a tack cloth to remove any dust particles between coats.

Duncan Phyfe Coffee Table Clear Coat

The pedestal base was protected with clear Best Dang Wax from Dixie Belle Paint Company applied with a round brush and buffed with a lint-free rag.

Aging the coffee table with glaze

I hemmed and hawed long and hard whether to leave the coffee table a fresh clean white or give it an aged patina. I went with the later using Grunge Glaze from Dixie Belle Paint Company. You can glaze before applying clear coat but my preference is after because the glaze has a longer play time. Also, I was concerned about staining the image transfer.

Duncan Phyfe Coffee Table Aged Dark Glaze

Aged glaze technique on the top:

  • It's important that you work in sections while the glaze is wet.
  • Use an inexpensive chip brush dipped in water first and dabbed onto a paper towel so the brush is damp (not soaked). Keep the brush wet throughout the glazing application.
  • Dip just the tips of the bristles in the glaze (a little goes a long way) and with a pouncing up and down motion while twisting your wrist left and right, dab the glaze along the perimeter and heavier in the four corners (as pictured below).
  • Dab a damp rag over the glaze to remove the excess.
  • With very little glaze on your damp brush and light pressure, run the brush across the top and over the image transfer. Wipe the excess with a damp cloth.
  • There are no rules - keep playing until you get the look you want. You can remove the glaze with a damp cloth before it dries. 

Aged glaze technique on the base:

  • Again with a damp brush, add the glaze on the pedestal base and legs.
  • Apply the glaze heavier in the grooves, ridges, and corners.
  • Wipe the excess with a damp cloth.

I should note that after the table was glazed I added more French Sage artisan powder in the grooves along the top and pedestal base.

Duncan Phyfe Coffee Table Carte Postale Transfer



I'm so pleased with how this table turned out. As my fellow furniture fixer-upper pals can attest, one of the downsides of furniture makeovers to sell is that some pieces can be hard to part with. Such is the case with this table.

We are quite happy with the DIY Upholstered Ottoman in our living room but dang, this Duncan Phyfe coffee table goes so well with our Duncan Phyfe Dining Table and Chairs in our L-shaped living/dining room. What to do...what to do?


Duncan Phyfe Coffee Table With Image Transfer

How To Add Image Transfers Onto Painted Furniture


Now let's take a look at how my talented friend's in the Furniture Fixer Uppers group transformed these furniture pieces...
Furniture Fixer Uppers Group September
Press the links below to see the after photos and tutorials...

I share my projects at these fabulous link parties.



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