herringbone pattern table

Herringbone patterns are hot right now. This little table out of paint sticks is to die for. Karianne from Thistlewood Farm is here to show you how she did it. Welcome to Herringbone Pattern Table Makeover!

She amazes me with her talent! I want this little table somewhere in my house. And she is just sweet enough that if I asked her nicely she would probably say yes!


What is that Herringbone Pattern?

A herringbone pattern is a distinctive arrangement of rectangular or parallelogram-shaped tiles, bricks, or flooring material that creates a zigzag pattern reminiscent of the skeleton of a herring fish.

In this pattern, each rectangular piece is laid at a 45-degree angle to the adjacent ones, forming a V-shaped pattern.

They are commonly used in various applications such as flooring, wall tiling, paving, and even textiles and furniture. They add visual interest and a sense of sophistication to spaces, and they can be found in both traditional and contemporary designs.

The pattern’s versatility allows it to be used in a wide range of architectural styles, from classic to modern, making it a popular choice in interior and exterior design.

Table Makeover

Don’t you just love a good before and after?

It’s kind of like watching a really good Hallmark movie.

Like the one about the girl that no one ever noticed because she always wore glasses and frumpy clothes with not cute hair and she was super shy.

And she didn’t really have any friends.

But you knew that she could be so cute if she just cut her hair and put on make-up and borrow a prom dress from the girl who lived down the street.


And then one day she bumped into the most popular guy in school who knocked her books over.  When he helped her up…..just for a moment he gazed into her eyes….well actually he really gazed into her glasses, but it didn’t matter because he saw beyond those glasses…..

  …..and truly saw her for the first time.

He saw her for the true beauty that she was.

And then he asked her to homecoming and she turned from a shy, awkward ugly duckling into the belle of the ball in her beautiful borrowed prom dress.


Before and afters are the best.

And here’s one of my very favorites:

Before and After Paint Stick Table

Paint Sticks


  • Table
  • Paint sticks
  • Wood glue
  • Wood filler
  • Sandpaper and sander
  • Saw
  • Miter box
Paint Stick Project

How To Make the Herringbone Pattern Table

Step 1:  Cut paint strips into five inch sticks

I used about 25 paint sticks for this project.

Each paint strip was cut individually with a saw in a miter box.

I used 34 five inch sticks to start the base of the pattern for the table and then

filled in around the edges with other smaller pieces.

Projects with paint sticks

Step 2:  Paint base of table

Step 3:  First Sticks

Measure 2 1/2” from the edge of the table and place a strip of blue painter’s tape.

The blue painter’s tape is your guide for the edge of the first row.

It is very important that you line up the first row properly so the rest of the herringbone pieces are straight.

Line up first two pieces with tape and a square ruler.

Apply wood glue and let dry.

Paint Stick Table

Step 4:  The rest of the pieces

Using blue tape as your guide, continue laying pieces of paint stick.

Line up edge of pieces on tape to keep the pattern straight.

Glue each piece in place with wood glue.

Follow the herringbone pattern as shown.

Cut Side Pieces to Fit

Step 5: Repeat step 4 until the basic pattern is laid

Once pattern is laid and glued in place, measure side spaces and cut side pieces to fit.

Don’t worry if the sides don’t line up perfectly, the sides will be sanded to match later.

putty for paint stick project

Step 6: Fill gaps with wood putty

After your paint strips are all laid in a herringbone pattern, there will be some that don’t match up perfectly.

Use stainable wood putty to fill in gaps.

Follow directions on package.

Let dry.

Sand edges of table

Step 7:  Sand entire table top. 

The strips are made of pine which is extremely soft and sands easily.

Round the edges of the table top until the sides are uniform and lined up.

Sand where putty has dried and sand any uneven pieces of paint stick.

Herringbone Paint Stick Table

Step 8: Stain table top

Follow directions on stain for application.

I used Minwax Provincial.

Apply two coats and follow up with a water based polyurethane to seal the wood.

You could also paint it or leave it natural with a coat of polyurethane.

Herringbone Paint Stick Table

This project is relatively simple and so inexpensive to make.

It looks like a high-end piece from an expensive retail store.

Here’s the after….in all her paint stick tabletop glory.

From ugly duckling to the belle of the ball.

I am totally calling the Hallmark Channel. 🙂

For more inspiration from Thistlewood….here are a few of my favorite projects:

Thistlewood Farm

Pallet Table           

Chalkboard Calendar          

Farmhouse House Tour

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  1. can I say brilliant! and to show us all how to do…..sweet girl…and the best part her story line is always so fun….love this and I have shared and pinned…

  2. I should have known this was a Thistlewood Farm project! I saw on Pinterest and immediately clicked over. Karianne – you have blown me away again. Love love love it!

  3. She is amazing isn’t she? I just keep waiting for her to recognize how amazing she is and leave me in the dist and not want to contribute anymore. 😉

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  5. I sure would like to know more about the oversized recipe backing the dish rack behind the table! Awesome!

  6. Ohhhhhhhh my god!!!! I love love love this!!!! I have a little side table that would be perfect for this project. I am sold! Thank you soooo much for this tutorial!

  7. So what I have been looking for. Question though….what tool did you use to cut the sides of the table once it was completed?

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