I passed by this sad little table at the thrift shop about a half dozen times before deciding to bring it home and give it a new life in our new house. With a little spray paint and some adorable laminated cotton (it was originally my idea to use oil cloth, but I couldn't pass up this fabric), this little table received quite the transformation!
We kept this project super simple and didn't worry about removing the original fabric. We washed everything down really well and covered any rough spots with white electrical tape. I was a bit worried about the staples poking up through the top, so I welcomed any extra padding I could get. We used 1/4" staples and everything worked out great! I'm currently using this in my kitchen until we figure out what we want permanently.
If you think your table is going to get a lot of wear and tear, you might consider oil cloth as a more heavy duty/durable option.