The Reluctant Renovators, Design Element #2 The Counters.


Old counter
Old counter
Weekend Two, Design Element #2: The Counters. The Rustoleum Counter Restoration kit is $249 at Lowes http:/, and we bought ours in Onyx.  I like white for counters, and if money were no object, I would have bought white Corian counters.  I like how I can see everything on white, and know my kitchen is sparkling clean.  However, there is no white Countertop Restoration Kit, and I didn’t like the lighter shades for our kitchen colors.  So, it was Onyx.
Rustoleum Counter Restoration Kit
Rustoleum Counter Restoration Kit and stuff we had to have on hand to complete the transformation
This job was not difficult to do, if you have the time and a helper, it gets done, but it is scary as heck. We are meticulous, and it comes in handy with projects like this.  We watched the video at least 10 times, and that’s no exaggeration (I’m not sure if we watched it the last few times to put off the inevitable, or what, seriously.)
We followed every step starting by cutting plastic and covering everything we didn’t want to end up black.  Then we sanded down the counter to make it rough so that the epoxy would adhere to it.  Our white counters had a bit of a wavy pattern, so we really had to dig in with the sanding.
Then we watched the video again.  Time to apply the thick black epoxy type paint.  When we thought we had it right in our heads how to proceed, we watched it one more time to make sure we had it exactly right.  Again, we are ROOKIES, and we were about to change our perfectly workable counters forever.  A screw up would definitely break the budget.
We sweated our way through the application of the thick black epoxy paint, making it perfectly even on the counter with me doing the back splash of the counter, and Rick immediately following me rolling the paint thickly on the flat surface of the counters, we worked quickly and silently.  And went over it meticulously to ensure full coverage.
Then without hesitations, we had to use a weed feeder like device to spray a heavy coat of paper-thin chips directly onto the counter, covering every surface, including the floor, our stove, our shoes, inside the sink — a thick layer laid over every surface, lest we miss even one spot.   I won’t say that there was no jostling and some choice words spoken through this process, the space is small and we had to stick side by side.  Then came a night of rest (what was left of it). And we woke to this:
Before sanding...
Before sanding…
After several sanding sessions, almost there.
After several sanding sessions, almost there.
It looked like a stone countertop (AMAZING), and we began to sand the surface.  And we sanded some more.  We patched some areas that amazingly needed touching up, which surprised us, as we went over the entire surface with the work light before heading to bed.  So, we had to wait for four hours before we could sand some more.  What was supposed to be done in two days, ended up with me finishing the sanding while Rick worked on Monday, and then Monday night we sweated through applying the high gloss sealer  (after watching the video a few more times) in the same manner as applying the epoxy, Lord save us. This had to cure for a week, so we were cutting it close with starting on the cabinets on Friday. Overall, we were really surprised by the beauty of the countertops and the back splash. The design in my head was coming together in our kitchen.  Pretty cool.
Finished counter
Finished counter
The worse part of the entire project was having to watch the DVD so much that we began hating the people on the DVD as they smiled through it, seriously, with hardly any mess at all, and then celebrated by cutting veggies and fruit on a cutting board on their new countertops.  We didn’t once see them sweat, they didn’t have black epoxy on their forearms or on their faces or on their sweats, in fact they weren’t even wearing sweats.  OBNOXIOUS.
Design Element #2 Complete, next up Design Element #3, which meant us standing for hours in the aisles of Lowes again deciding which color to paint our cabinets.  We were all in for Castle (a gray color), but then hubby started thinking about Cabernet, a deep red.  We opted for Castle in the end… Phew.
To be continued…
PS, forgive me that there are no breaks between paragraphs.  Am trying to figure that out now.  🙂





2 thoughts on “The Reluctant Renovators, Design Element #2 The Counters.

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