before and after · DIY · Ikea hack · Living room · Painting

Copy Cat Carrera




Before we venture any further into this post, I want to say although I would LOVE to claim this idea, I cannot.  I was scrolling through Pinterest (as usual) looking for the coffee table idea to replace that lovely but easily sullied ottoman (yes, I realize I just posted a project on it – but it’s already worse for wear – thanks for nothing, everyday living).  I came across The Hunted Interior blog which showed the thing I blatantly stole and am posting here.  I am thrilled about the outcome, and you can easily have the look for yourself.  I promise!

Start with the very inexpensive Ikea Vittsjo nesting tables. IMG_1403

I put the tables together before spray painting the metal bits with this:


I still love this product over all the other gold sprays out there. I got mine at the Home Depot.

Putting the tables together after spray painting could scratch the finish.

IMG_1347  IMG_1348

Once the 3 coats of gold were dry, I sealed it with clear matte spray paint of which I can’t find right now to show you but it’s a Rust-Oleum product. (Geeze I really need to buy shares). I sprayed the brown shelf high gloss white like marble would be with left over product I had.

IMG_1352 How blue paint drips get on a white lid, I’ll never know. I digress.

After painting the shelf white, I delved into the faux marble part.

Okay, I know you well enough by now to know you have shut down the brain because you think you couldn’t possible get this part right.  I’m here to tell you that you can so!  It’s really just a matter of simple technique.  Marble comes in all sorts of looks – heavily veined, hardly veined, dark grey, light grey, mixed, almost all white.   I say that however your way turns out, it’s probably out there somewhere.  So, chillax as them there young people say.  Go forth with confidence.

IMG_1356 IMG_1358

These are the supplies I used.  Just notice the black and white blobs of paint, ok?  I recycle paint pans a LOT.  Fact: you can peel dried latex paint off most anything if it’s thick enough. I just didn’t bother.  I’m trying to show how much black I used in comparison to the white. Or maybe that isn’t even clear by this pic, but it’s lots of white to very very little black.  You can make all kinds of greys from this.  I used very little paint total.

I had three different paintbrush sizes.  Some people also use a feather for the veins or even jagged pieces of cardboard.  It just goes to show that there are many ways to do this faux finish.  I actually googled images of Carrera marble to give myself ideas.

But wait! If after all my encouragement you still can’t pull out the confidence, there is many a contact paper out there with a Carrera marble look.  Slap some of that on and you can quit sweating in fear.  You could wrap it in funky paper or fabric or just keep it high gloss white if you want- or any colour for that matter. But I still think you should try this first.  If I didn’t say that, I couldn’t call myself Found This Painted That now could I?

IMG_1357 I started by brushing paint on here and there.  No water.  Dry brush immediately after to blur the edges and give it a soft quality.  Always with the big brush, and always right after so that it doesn’t dry as a hard line. Now just layer and layer until you like how it looks. Or at the very least, tolerate how it looks.

IMG_1359 Next comes the veining. my way is to push my small paintbrush straight up away from me starting from the bottom moving to the top.  Dry brush until you’ve blurred the edges on the veining.  Add paint and brush, paint over and brush, vein and brush, over and over and over until you are either happy with it or just exhausted.  Whichever comes first. I’ve been told people sip wine while doing this part because it loosens them up.  Frankly, the last thing I need is more loosening.

IMG_1360  When you are satisfied or like I said, too tired to go on, give it a coat of latex polyurethane (oil base yellows over time) or use the lovely Rust-Oleum clear gloss spray as I did.  Make sure everything is very dry before you put the shelf and the glass tops on to the frame to avoid re-spraying the gold yet again. Yes, as a matter of fact, I AM speaking from experience.



Here is the awesomest part.  If you still think you did a shabby job when all is said and done, you can be secure in the knowledge that you can cover most or all of it with magazines, books and trinkets.  So take heart cowardly lions, no one will be the wiser and you will have accomplished your first foray into the world of Trompe L’oeil. Tres Bon!



65 thoughts on “Copy Cat Carrera

  1. OMG. Seriously???? I hardly feel fit to be a faithful follower so woefully inadequate I am to do anything like this. You are awesome. I just want to go and buy that table at my local “small business”. I love it.

  2. Good stuff, as usual. I’m looking for “the” coffee table too – thinking about refinishing a trunk but maybe I’ll wait for you to do it first so I can see how it turns out :-).

  3. Wow! That really DOES look like marble! Great job! And yes…you are waay more brave than I with the veining…it looks fabulous! Don’t worry about changing your mind so much with the coffee table thing… I just found me a new dining table AGAIN today… #4! (or maybe it’s 5 now…?) Lol! You must keep going until it feels right!…Right? :0)
    Take care!

    You have just completely made my day.

    I have been wanting a glass topped brass edged table for just about ever, but couldn’t afford anything I came across.

    You have blown my mind.

    THANK YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!

  5. Boom! DIY Goodness. I can’t believe you made this look so easy. The after looks like a high end piece you bought at a Z- Gallerie..seriously. I will definitely try the marbling thing and let you know how it goes…not any time soon though. lol

    1. Don’t be so hard on yourself! Actually I liked the first attempt better than you did. Besides I guarantee there’s those out there that like yours better than mine. That’s what I love about art – there’s no wrong way. Thanks for following!!

  6. We have a set of square nesting tables, with black metal frames and glass tops, like in this project. They’ve been relegated to the basement because they don’t fit the wood-oriented décor we’ve adopted. However, this project now has me thinking I could switch-out the glass for either reclaimed barn wood (which we have) or, for a classier touch, a section of parquet flooring with an inlay design. Hmmm. Now you’ve got me thinking….

    1. Reclaimed barn wood?!?! Fabulous. Then when people put their feet up on the table you won’t freak out…ok it only happened once…anyway, use what you have and couldn’t you cut it up and alternate vertical and horizontal pieces of the barn board? That’s kinda like parquet. Kinda?

  7. Wow, I just love interior design, and I am just in awe of that table. It looks like it is straight out of a mid century furniture catalogue or was in Elle Decor. I love making things too like trinkets, clothing and collages, but I have never tried modifying furniture. I will definitely have to try this out.
    My blog is

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