One day last summer while out and about, my husband and I came across a few tree stumps on the side of the road. We chose stumps with the least damage and loaded them into our vehicle and made our way home.
What I loved most about the stumps was that the bark was already removed; also a good sign that they were dry. But just to be safe we kept them outside for many months on our covered porch to dry completely.
At this point the stumps were pretty gross- covered in slime and Georgia-red clay. They needed a good cleaning! My first thought was to wipe off as much as I could with a damp rag and sand the rest, but considering their condition I didn't think that would get them clean enough.
I decided to have my husband carry them upstairs so I could give them a bleach bath. Bleach cleans everything right?!
I was really nervous I would damage the wood, but decided to try anyway. And guess what, it worked! I poured concentrated bleach over each stump and scrubbed the debris off with a scrub brush and soapy water. I allowed the stumps to dry outside for few days, while I decided what to do next. I thought about staining them like I did in the past, or giving them a fresh coat of paint. I loved them in their natural state best and decided to leave them as they were.
The knots give the stump so much character.
My guess is that the holes in the stumps are from woodpecker damage.
I see them a lot in our backyard pecking at our trees too.
As a final step, I did sand the tops smooth using my Dremel. I thought about sealing them with a clear coat of Polycrylic, but I'm nervous about them yellowing over time. Also I don't want them to appear glossy or shiny. I may decide later to just coat the tops. I'm certain bleach took care of any lingering critters!
Even without sanding, the body of the stumps are still very soft and smooth.
The annual rings of the tree are clearly visible.
The pieces weren't cut straight, but I don't mind one bit. That's another characteristic that I love.
I skipped adding legs or wheels, but I do plan to add furniture glides so that air can circulate underneath them.
I hope you're inspired to turn a tree stump into a beautiful piece of furniture.
Work it Wednesday