I’m so excited to finally share my potting bench makeover with you. When I found this 80’s kitchen island at a local auction house, I knew it would make a perfect potting bench for my new potting shed. So, I put in an absentee bid and went home to avoid the crowds of the auction that would be held later that night.
I was pretty pleased when I got a call the next day saying that I had won the bid and I could pick up my treasure later that day. I guess nobody else saw the diamond in the rough that I saw. See BEFORE pic below.
How to Paint a Potting Bench
Choosing paint for your potting bench:
I had recently painted a feature wall in my living room a dark charcoal color called Cracked Pepper by Behr and I loved the color so much that I was dying to put it on everything I owned. Having a bit more sense than that I resolved myself to contain it to the potting bench.
Find your paint supplies online:
What you’ll need to paint your potting bench:
- Potting bench: I used a hideous 80’s rolling kitchen island, but any counter height piece of furniture will do.
- Paint of your choosing, semi-gloss will hold up better and be more durable/washable
- Small sanding block
- TSP Paint prep product
- Rubber gloves
- Bucket of hot water & old rag
- Small trim roller
- 3-inch paint brush
- Wagner Paint Sprayer (optional but fantastic)
Wagner has a full line-up of paint sprayers for any budget:
How to Paint a Potting Bench:
Start by removing any doors, drawers, and knobs. My cabinet doors wouldn’t come off without a fight so I chose to leave them on.
Give the entire piece a light sand with your sanding block to remove any varnish and give the paint something to stick to. Do your best to sand with the grain of the wood to avoid any ugly scratch marks.
Dissolve the TSP product in a bucket of hot water, as per the package instructions. Using rubber gloves and an old rag thoroughly wipe down the entire potting bench and all the parts to remove any grease or grime that might inhibit the paint from sticking. Let it dry fully before painting (15 -30 mins depending on your weather)
I used a basic interior semigloss paint and my Wagner paint sprayer to get 2 good coats of paint on the potting bench. I love my Wagner sprayer, I have used it on a ton of projects around the yard, it’s light and easy to use and so easy to clean, which is often a complaint of other paint sprayers. If you have never used a paint sprayer before, simply load the paint container with your paint and working in a steady back and forth method, apply a light but even coat of paint to the entire piece. Paint applied with a sprayer will dry quickly so you can recoat in 20-30 mins. Nice eh?!
I chose to use a small trim roller for the front of the drawers. I did not paint the entire drawer because I did not want to impede the sliding action of the drawer, which can happen if the paint is too thick and clogs up the drawer runners. So, the sides of the drawers and inside the cabinet stayed wood. I also sprayed the wooden drawer pulls, even though I knew I would be replacing the front 3 pulls.
When your paint is fully cured, (I’d give it 12-24 hours to really set up) you can reassemble the potting bench and move it to your potting shed. This is where I added the 3 new handpainted porcelain pulls that I purchased from a local design boutique, they were a splurge at $12 a piece but I absolutely love them so… no guilt here!
You can find similar pulls online:
Caring for your Painted Potting Bench
This potting bench makeover was an upcycle project and was pretty easy to do, but I still want my painted potting bench to stay looking nice, so when in use I cover the top with craft paper or a piece of white marine vinal that I have. Covering the top keeps water from sitting on the wood and raising the wood grain, and it prevents my terra cotta pots from scratching the top of the potting bench. Other than that I just wipe my painted potting bench down from time to time with a damp cloth and allow it to air dry.
That’s it for now, I hope this potting bench makeover inspires you to makeover a piece of furniture you have laying around into something special for your She Shed. To see my full potting shed makeover and learn about my top 3 potting shed must-haves, see my article here:
Otherwise, thanks for hanging out and talk soon!