As a bit of a departure from my normal papercrafting projects, I decided to work on a Pinterest-inspired project this weekend. My fiancé built this for us about five or six years ago and I love it. It’s sturdy and seats about 12, if we’re really friendly. It’s functional, but was looking a little worn. An update was in order.
First step: primer. Even as worn as the wood was, I wanted to prime the surface so it would accept the paint better and cover a few stains. Kilz is great at covering stains, even the greasy kind. This is two coats of Kilz, un-tinted.
Next step, tint the remaining Kilz. This part was definitely an experiment. But, if it didn’t work, I wouldn’t lose much. A half a can of $8.00 Kilz and couple of hours sanding and repainting? I could risk it.
I didn’t want to buy more paint if I didn’t have to and I didn’t want to waste the remaining Kilz. I decided to try and tint the Kilz with a colorant I already had. I didn’t think acrylic paint would be vibrant enough, so I went straight for the hard stuff: Dr. Ph. Martin’s India Ink in blue and green. I added a little of each and stirred and repeated until I got the color I want. I was nervous that it would separate from the Kilz or not be a smooth coat, but this is the result. I loved the custom color once it dried, but I admit to being very nervous when it went on and looked mostly white with a blue tinge. It dried much darker than it looked wet and I breathed a huge sigh of relief. The picture below is pretty accurate for color. It’s the perfect shade of aqua to play up the colors I planned for the details.
Next step: stencils. I used my Silhouette Cameo and made simple stencils of bees and ants. I also made a really not-so-simple stencil for the sunflower but ended up not using them and freehanded that instead. Here’s one stencil of the bee – I’d removed the outer part of the stencil but hadn’t yet peeled off the interior stuff.
And then the bee got some details. (No these are not my hands. I enlisted the fiancé’s help!
And here’s the final product. Everything was painted in multiple coats of FolkArt acrylic craft paint. The sunflower and bees contrast nicely with the color of the table, I think. The little ants crawling here and there are one solid color – a mix of red and chocolate FolkArt acrylic craft paint. I used the same paint for the sunflower with brown as the base coat and then a coat of orange before I put the yellow on top. The final detail was the little flight trails for the bees, one of which makes me think his picnic may have included a adult beverage or two.
I put two coats of Varathane water-based urethane over the top and will probably add some more coats over the next week or so. The manufacturer recommends a minimum of four coats but I want it to dry completely between coats.
I’d love to know your thoughts on my DIY Picnic Table redo! Leave a comment below.