A few weeks ago, I wrote a post about our plans for our farmhouse kitchen. You can read the post here. We started a 3 phase kitchen renovation project last year and phase 1 is almost completed. We turned 27 flat panel kitchen cabinet doors and drawers into shaker style by using rough cut pine boards.Part of phase 2 is about replacing our dated laminate countertop with walnut butcher block. I love the warmth and sophistication of dark wood but because of finances, this phase is on hold. In the past month, I grew impatient and started thinking of ways to make our laminate countertop look like wood. It took me a week of trials and errors but I am thrilled to report that I found a way.
This is a before picture of our laminate countertop.I woke up one morning and decided to paint our countertop white thinking that it would be a quick and inexpensive temporary solution. After applying two coats of primer, I was not satisfied with the results. I did not go through with painting it white because my dream kitchen had walnut butcher block, not a white countertop. This is how it looked after two coats of primer.I spent countless hours looking for ways to make our laminate countertop look like wood. I tried faux wood grain techniques with different shades of yellow (base coat) and brown (top coat mixed with glaze) on a plywood scrap board.I was pulling my hair out with every try and I started panicking. The countertop was primed and I had to do something. After I was ready to throw in the towel and paint it white, I came across a product called Stainable Primer. This is a primer that has wood particles in it and is stainable. You can transform ANY hard material into a stainable wood surface. I WAS SO EXCITED!!!!!!!! After a week of headaches, I could finally transform my laminate countertop into wood! The euphoria came and went followed by some serious doubts. Could this really work? I watched videos, looked at the company website and saw pictures of different things that had been transformed with this product but I did not see any kitchen countertops. I had nothing to lose. My husband was nice enough to drive 45 minutes away on Labor Day to buy a quart of stainable primer and I put a first coat on our countertop when he got home. After I applied a second coat of stainable primer, I used a wood graining tool to make a wood grain pattern.This is a close-up picture of the countertop after 2 coats of stainable primer and a wood grain pattern over the second coat.Time to stain! I applied two coats of Minwax ‘Dark Walnut’. For the first coat, I just stained and wiped the excess stain like I usually do. I tried the same technique on a small area of the countertop with the second coat but it did not darken the color that much. I was really desperate to get a richer brown so I decided not to wipe the excess stain with the second coat. After one week of drying time and the help of a space heater, the end result is looking pretty sharp. The best part is that our countertop REALLY looks like wood! Like any wooden surface, the countertop needed to be sealed. I went with polyurethane in a satin finish and I applied a total of three coats. I always prep food on a cutting board so I wasn’t concerned about using polyurethane. The cost for this project was only $76.98. I am beyond happy with the outcome and I can’t wait to add a beadboard backsplash over our ”new” countertop in the next few weeks.I hope you like our countertop as much as I do! I will be back soon with pretty pictures of our kitchen countertop dressed up for Fall.
Greetings from Kingsbury Brook Farm!
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