Re-purposed Bench and Candleholders - DIY - Americana Chalky Finish Paint

I bought a bench about 12 years ago and it has sat on my back deck for at least 10 of those years.  It sits there all year, through the snow, rain and scorching sun.  Recently my husband noticed it and mentioned that it was time to "get rid of it".   But I get these strange allegiances to certain things that have served me well, this was one of them, and I wasn't ready to put it out to pasture (or the curb for the trash truck).

I have worked with the Chalky Finish paint many times and know how easy it is to turn junk into treasure with the paint so I looked around my house to see where the bench could be re-purposed.

We have a small family room off of our kitchen where everyone seems to want to congregate.  The problem is, there is only one chair and one couch in that room because it is so small so there is never enough seating.  The room has a large center window and I have often thought that a window seat would be perfect for that room.    This bench was narrow enough to fit under the window without having to move any furniture and would make a wonderful window seat!
It would provide extra seating when everyone crammed into the small room instead of the roomy, plenty of seating, large living room that we also have.
So that was it, I was on a mission to refinish the outdoor, heavily weathered bench into a beautiful indoor window seat.

Here is the bench on the back deck.

Also pictured in the photos is a set of candle holders.  I had been to a card and gift store and saw some chunky candle holders that I loved, but they were $24. a piece!
Keeping them in the back of my mind, I found these at a flea market while on vacation for; drum roll........ 50 cents a piece!   After all, as is they are so ugly, who would want them?
Not very attractive, but I had vision for them.  They could decorate the window seat when no one was sitting on it.

Because the bench had been outside, it was pretty beat up so first I tried to clean it.

Normally this is all I would have done before painting with the Chalky paint because that is the beauty of the Chalky paint, it takes very little prep.
But this piece was in such bad shape that I came to realize I would have to give it a good sanding.   I asked my husband to help me carry the bench down to the garage and once he knew what I was up to, he graciously offered to sand it for me.   Hooray for husbands!

When Vic was done sanding, we tacked (wiped) the sanding dust off and I filled the holes and cracks with wood filler.   Both were very easy to do.

Once the filler was dry, I sanded the spots again to make them flush with the wood and was ready to paint.
At first I thought I would use a blue, because there is a lot of the robins egg blue & teal in that room.   Then I decided to go with something perky and fun.   I chose a spunky green called New Life, which was very fitting for this bench that had been headed for the waste dump.

I was going to distress or dry brush another color over the top so I did a few samples to see if I liked them.  I didn't, I decided that I liked this color on its own.  I recommend that you take the time to do a sample board before working on your piece if you have never used a particular color or technique before.   It saves a lot of work and paint.
After two coats of paint, I applied a coat of Clear Wax for protection.  I used a brush that is recommended for applying wax and it makes the job much easier than using a cloth, but be sure to pick any loose bristles off the surface before it dries.

In the meantime, while the paint dried and then the wax, I worked on the candle holders.  First I cleaned them, and then I painted them with Everlasting Chalky Finish paint. 

Then I lightly distressed them by sanding a few areas to allow the dark wood underneath to peek through. 

When everything was done, I brought the new window seat up into my home and put it in place. 

Don't be afraid to try re-purposing something, the only thing that is scary about the process is that you might get hooked, and then you might find yourself painting everything.     :)   Tracy





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