$10 wicker bench ready for Broadway!

June 30, 2010 at 6:14 am 6 comments

bench before


bench after


It was supposed to be a quick repaint job.  But thanks to my impatience, it took me weeks to get it right.  Concept: remove cushions, scuff-sand, paint a contrasting color, paint clear coat, replace cushions.

I’m thrifty, so I was using collected spray paint from my shed.  I wasn’t too concerned with whether it was flat, satin or gloss since I’d be finishing with a good clear coat of gloss.  I put two coats of  black acrylic spray on successfully.  But, the third can happened to be ENAMEL.  I had never stopped to consider the difference between enamel and acrylic sprays.  Well, it turns out, they are vastly different.  As I sprayed what was supposed to be the touch up coat over the thus far pristine surfaces of my black bench, it began to bubble and foam like a witches brew and wrinkle like a witches face.  Son of a witch.  So, I waited another hour and went back to sand the malformed areas.  I began to sand and as the heat from the friction of the sanding increased, the wrinkled, bubbled areas became gobby, lumpy messes.

At this point, I was desperate enough to do something I hardly ever do–I read the directions on the can of paint.  It turns out, with Enamel spray paint, it is best to put a second coat on either within the first hour OR wait 48 hours for the paint to fully cure.  Enamels are oil based and have MUCH longer drying and curing times than acrylics.  But, the benefit is that the finish is shinier and more durable, a trade-off my patience is rarely willing to make.  Because of the vastly different drying rates, it is unadvisable to layer either paint on the other without allowing for complete cure time of the base layer.  But, I also suspect that because of the oil based nature of enamel, it may act as a solvent to even fully dried acrylic base coats as I finally did let all undercoats cure completely and still had problems with wrinkling and bubbling. Well, after several more rounds of sanding and painting (acrylics only), it’s satisfactory.

I was most happy with the sophisticated color palette.  I opted to leave the back cushion off.  It emphasizes the horizontality of the bench and invites the new owner to play with some throw pillows (and I know you love to play with throw pillows, Beth).  I plan to bring the bench to the furniture consignment later this week.  My dh does not approve of wicker anything, so we will not be adopting this particular piece.

bench before


bench after



Entry filed under: Before & After, Refinishing Tips, Sean's Projects. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , .

“Polka Dot” dresser revamp the needle is on the record

6 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Beth  |  June 30, 2010 at 6:50 am

    Talk about an unexpected learning experience! I love how it looks with the black paint. Instead of the consignment store you can drop it off at my house? Dh will be thrilled to have a new piece of furniture in our home. You know how “bear” it is around here. ;-).

  • 2. Beth  |  June 30, 2010 at 6:57 am


    (knocks head on wall… quietly goes to bed)

  • 3. Donna Anderson  |  June 30, 2010 at 4:16 pm

    Wow what a difference. Will you price by the “hour”???? What a learning experience. It looks wonderful. Great job. Someone will love it. My dh has put a hold on bringing anything home for awhile! And I agree.

  • 4. Beth  |  June 30, 2010 at 5:34 pm

    Great question. Sean, how do you price your furniture for resale?

  • 5. gadgetronica  |  June 30, 2010 at 5:53 pm

    I don’t. The store handles that. They price it retail and I get 50% of what it sells for. It can be marked down by as much as 50%. So, if they price it at $100, I could get anywhere from $25-$50 if it sells. It’s more than I would make at a yard sale and a lot less hassle! Luckily, it wasn’t a lot of hours that went into it. It was more about waiting the two days between each step that was driving me BANANAS!

  • 6. coco  |  July 29, 2010 at 5:36 am

    i love how this looks with the black. i never would’ve thought to paint it dark, but it looks really vintage modern and fresh!


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