Hello! It’s Paige checking in from college for today’s Before & After Furniture post! Over the summer we came across a great find on one of our garage sale adventures: an old chipping outdoor bench. As you can see below, this bench needed a lot of love, but the structure was still solid and it had potential written all over it. We decided to refurbish the bench into a fraternity bench for outside of my boyfriend’s college house. He is a Sigma Phi Epsilon at Bowling Green State University, so we used their flag as inspiration. With bold colors of red, purple, and gold, we knew this bench would liven up in no time!
To get started, I added some missing screws and brought out sypsie’s first power tool, an electric sander. I don’t know what I would’ve done without that baby, there was lots of decaying sealant that had to be sanded off. After quite a bit of sanding, we cleaned the side metal and used gold spray paint with a hammered finish. The gold made the metal design stand out even more which was one of the things we loved most about the bench. Next came priming and taping off the bench to start the painting!
I purchased sample sized Behr paint from Home Depot, a cheap way to get paint for furniture projects that last longer than one would think! I started from the center, secretly/not-so-secretly so I could sit down as I did it. After the red and purple went down, painting the gold line provided to be the smallest portion and the hardest. Add in needing triple coats to make the color stand out, the painting took quite a few days!
Originally I had the idea of painting on the Greek letters and star, but after evaluating more, with the width of the wood it would not have been possible for symmetric letters. I ended up buying a small sheet of aluminum from Home Depot and using metal scissors to cut out the letters and star. Next, I primed and spray painted them with the leftover hammered gold from the sides of the bench. I found little gold nails to attach the letters to the bench, they worked out perfectly! The letters ended up tying in the metal arms of the bench quite nicely. To finish it off I added a few layers of outdoor sealer to make sure it could withstand an Ohio winter for years to come!
This old chipping outdoor bench now has a new purpose of bringing Sip Ep pride to it’s new home in Bowling Green, Ohio. Always fun for us when we can take an old piece of furniture that looks like it’s at it’s life end and give it a second chance!
Melissa @ aprudentlife says
Great idea with the metal letters!
Thanks! Made it much easier — plus it stands out more!