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brown paper packages: {picnic table...and winner!}

Monday, July 5, 2010

{picnic table...and winner!}

The day we moved into our house two years ago, we were at the township office picking up a few items, and noticed that some of the picnic tables that had been replaced at the park were up for sale. They were in pretty rough shape, but for only $10, I couldn't pass one up. So, I picked out the one that was the least beat up, and we loaded it onto our moving truck.

We love to eat outside, and picnic tables are wonderful because they fit so many people. They can also be moved around the yard as needed, and we have used it constantly. It was WAY past time to refinish it, and so I took advantage of the beautiful weather and got it done this past week. I love how it turned out, and I think it will last us another couple of years!


  • wire brush
  • outdoor/metal spray paint, hammered in texture
  • paint for wood (can be sprayed on, or brushed on)
  • stencil paper
  • exacto knife
  • sharpie marker
  • paint for numbers
  • masking tape
  • stencil paper (PLAID brand--I bought it at Walmart)
  • stain (Minwax Dark Walnut)
  • lint free rags
  • water sealer

1. The paint on the legs was quite rusted, and peeling off in several places. I took this steel brush, scrubbed all the flaking pieces off, and smoothed it out.

2. I did not want to have to completely strip the paint in order to re-paint, so I used this fabulous spray paint by Rustoleum instead. It's a black hammered paint, which hides all the imperfections of the old rusty paint. It's made for metal, the outdoors, and provides rust resistance. It's super easy to use, and although it's a little more expensive than a regular can, it's totally worth it.

The best place to do this was out in my backyard. I placed a tarp on the ground, and turned the table upside down. It's important to follow the specifications for weather/degrees, because it will make a huge difference. You will also want to watch the wind--it can blow all your paint away!

Better already!

3. Once the legs had completely dried, I turned the table upright, and taped off the legs with painters tape.

I then sprayed the wood benches and table top with Rustoleum's Heirloom White spray paint, and let it completely dry.

4. I wanted vintage-y numbers on the benches, so I printed out the numbers that I wanted. (Font: Traditional Arabic, sized to 375)

I used a fine-tipped Sharpie marker and traced the numbers onto PLAID stencil paper I purchased at Walmart. Using an exacto knife, I cut along the lines, and created my own stencils. Super easy and inexpensive, plus you can re-use them! (Thanks to April, over at The Painted Cupboard, for sharing her technique! I was amazed when I saw her darling bar stools, because that's exactly what I had been picturing for my picnic benches.)

5. Once all my stencils were cut out, I was ready to paint them on my benches. Masking tape became my friend, and I used it to keep the stencils in place and secure while I painted. I used black spray paint (because craft paint wouldn't work outdoors), and just sprayed it on a paper plate then applied it with a foam brush. The ridges in the old benches did not make for a particularly smooth application, but I knew I could sand a lot of the imperfections away.

6. The painted numbers dried really quickly in the hot sun, so I was ready to start sanding within an hour. Using a power sander, I smoothed out all the rough edges, and distressed the table top, benches, and numbers. Then I took a damp rag and removed all the dust, making sure to get in all the nooks and crannies.

7. Using a lint-free rag, I stained (Minwax Dark Walnut) all the wood pieces, getting the grooves and heavily sanded areas for an old, distressed look.

8. After the stain had dried for 24 hours, I sealed the wood with a clear waterproofer. I love this spray-on kind--SO easy, and so fast.

Ta-da! The picnic table has a new look, and is ready for summer! I absolutely love it. After purchasing the refinishing supplies, the table ended up being around $25. Can't beat that!


and the winner of the tickled pink paper + ink giveaway is...
Kristin, #6!

"1. The stamp I would choose would be the one with the double monogram in the center of the round address stamp. Love monograms!
2. I don't have any kids to announce births or graduations for, so we'd have to come up with something else - but I'm up to the task!
3. Contest added to sidebar at
4. I'm a follower.

Please pick me...I NEVER win anything!! :)"

E-mail me your info, and congrats!!!



Blogger Jessica said...

I love the picnic table...We have one that we purchased from Lowe's last year that really needs some sprucing up. I am gonna have to start thinking up ideas for it.

July 5, 2010 at 8:27 AM  
Blogger the thrifty ba said...

adorable table/bench!

July 5, 2010 at 9:14 AM  
Blogger Katie @ On the Banks of Squaw Creek said...

It looks great! I love the numbers on the bench, too.

July 5, 2010 at 9:41 AM  
Blogger Kristin said...

OH MY GOSH!!! I never win anything and I actually won this time!!! WOO HOO!!! Thank you, thank you!!

July 5, 2010 at 12:53 PM  
Blogger Country Dreaming said...

Both ideas are very cute--the table is great.
You can't find old picnic tables anymore.
The frame is cute too.


July 5, 2010 at 1:37 PM  
Blogger Cristan said...

The table turned out SO CUTE! Great job! :D

July 5, 2010 at 5:13 PM  
Blogger Lei said...

The table is so, so darling. I LOVE it!

July 5, 2010 at 8:24 PM  
Blogger The Girl Creative said...

You are amazing. I love it!! :)

July 5, 2010 at 10:14 PM  
Blogger judean said...

I never would have thought you bought that for $10--awesome job!!

July 6, 2010 at 2:03 PM  
Blogger Paige said...

I left you an award on my blog! Hope you have a great week!

July 6, 2010 at 10:10 PM  
Blogger Michelle@Somedaycrafts said...

Looks cute! Especially with that easy frame centerpiece!

July 7, 2010 at 2:09 AM  
Blogger Jill@Barnes Yard said...

Gorgeous! Oh my word, love it!

July 8, 2010 at 1:00 PM  
Blogger article said...

That's definitely a picnic furniture for me. Packing something delicious and nutritious shouldn’t be confined to that old brown paper bag or disposable plastic container. Go green! Be healthy and stylish with these cool picnic backpacks. Whoever thought green can be so vogue. picnic backpacks

July 14, 2010 at 4:02 PM  
Blogger Melissa said...

I love this! I can't wait to try and find a picnic table that I could do something like this too!

July 14, 2010 at 5:37 PM  
Blogger Dawn said...

I absolutely love your blog and all your craftiness. I always want to make everything you post. =)

January 5, 2011 at 2:56 PM  

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