When Louise Roe went looking for a dining room table last year, she started where a lot of us do—by noting what she liked best about the options she could find, cobbling them into a perfect (but nonexistent) table design in her head. “I had the image in my mind of the table I wanted,” the news-editor-turned-style blogger says, “having ripped out pages from AD,screenshotted bloggers and Pinterest images.” There would be gleaming, cubist brass legs and a large rectangular top. It would seat lots of friends. “Milo Baughman was a big influence,” Roe says, pointing to this rare bronze and smoked glass design circa 1970—but a $10,000 table wasn’t in her breakfast nook budget. They were renovating, after all. An RH Modern version with a polished marble was closer to budget but still too much. She resolved to beat the system by sourcing the parts herself.
A friend recommended that Roe scour the internet for table legs, and she found the perfect pair—brand new—with a Florida supplier on eBay for $1,500, including delivery. As exciting as the find was, it was still nerve-wracking, she remembers. “At about 1 a.m., after scrolling for hours, I hit ‘pay now’ and screamed!” Conveniently, Roe was in the middle of a bathroom renovation (this was her Melrose Place townhouse that she eventually sold to move into this 1935 Hollywood Hills gem) when she undertook the project, so she already had a Caesarstone supplier on speed dial; he would supply her a custom-cut tabletop slab for $600 (it would have been about $1,000 as a one-off order). Which brought the overall cost to just over $2,000, a fraction of the antique that had inspired her search in the first place. Being quartz, the Caesarstone surface didn’t need to be sealed or treated at all—dinner is served!—as “it’s already nonporous and waterproof,” Roe explains. And while it’s possible to watch enough YouTube videos to learn how to effectively connect the parts yourself, calling in a professional is never a bad idea when you’re working with expensive, new-to-you materials. “Personally, I’d always get a professional to do this (I know my limits!),” she says, which made for a perfect construction. They loved the table so much, and it held up so well, that it made the move.