Monday, July 10, 2017

Epoxy Countertops that look like Marble


Oh my goodness you guys, it's been a cool minute since I have even thought about this blog! I was on such a good roll and then life just happened, by life I mean crazy DIY's, cause that is life...holla! 
But I wanted to share with you some exciting news...
I have finally finished my kitchen makeover....again.....

So what turned out to be 'I'm just going to redo the countertops'
pretty much turned into a full on REDO!
But i'm not mad! 
Actually, 
I'm in love, and it turned out better than I could have even imagined!
DIY Marble Countertops



Several months ago, I had been contemplating redoing my outdated 
Venetian Gold granite with Epoxy.  I know some of you are probably thinking, I can't believe she would cover granite...that's just insane... and yes...to an extent it probably is. 
I mean lets face it, granite it super durable, it's not indestructible, but it's pretty darn close, plus it helps with resale value...folks love their granite...
So why would I cover it?

The simple truth.... I hated the color, and when we bought our house, the husband and I had discussed changing out the counter tops... but some how... he lost his memory of that convo... how convenient!
 I was never a fan and I don't currently have $6k plus to shell out for new counter tops... I mean let's just keep it real... Plus if I got new counter tops I would need a new sink, and I can't just have any ole' sink... it would have to be a Farmhouse sink, and I can't like just any farmhouse sink, it would have to be one that was over $1200... so as you can see, 
my hypothetical kitchen reno was just getting out of hand...quickly...

So, when something is not financially feasible, but yet, 
I can't some how live another day with out it... my DIY wheels start to turn.
 Naturally I took to the Internet, and after months of research I finally found the
 'holy grail' of EPOXY

STONE COAT COUNTERTOPS

I came across a gentleman by the name of Mike Quist on YOUTUBE, he and his wife Kathryn invented an amazing EPOXY specifically made for counter tops.

His videos were simple, to the point and most importantly, majorly informative. I kept waiting for them to cutaway right before the good part and then pop up with something about you have to buy this system... for five easy payments...blah blah blah... like so many others I had watched...
But guess what... that never happened... NOPE!
Not only did he spill the beans about how the epoxy worked and best practices, 
he showed his actual techniques on how to achieve certain looks.

I. WAS. BLOWN. AWAY.

I couldn't believe he was just giving away this information... for free...even tho that's what I wanted SOMEONE, ANYONE to do... but no one was....except him....and if you watch his videos for more than a couple minutes you realize he and his wife are just super nice, genuine people... 
which for me...really is a big deal.

Once I found Stone Coat Counter tops, I knew I could do this project... I had been going back and forth for months about buying other EPOXIES which is not like me, cause I am never apprehensive about any DIY, but because no one would show you how to really do it... I worried it wouldn't look how I wanted it to. After I watched Mike, I got the confidence back that I needed so desperately!

I emailed him the next day about collaborating and was so pumped when
 they said they would love too!

The Shipping was super fast. I got it in a like two days, and after a week or so 
of debating when to do it, I decided to pull the trigger and I got right to it.

This post is not a full on tutorial... 

I'm going to share the steps I did briefly, but STONE COAT COUNTERTOPS puts out amazing tutorials on YOUTUBE giving you all the info, plus you really need to learn it from them, not me. 
I got my technique from Mike, so you need to do it too.
I will be awesome however, and link relevant videos for you:)



Here's the full uncut training on to do the countertops from start to finish.


Here is how to mix the product.



STEPS TO PREPARE COUNTERTOPS

1. SAND COUNTERTOPS, I USED MY ORBITAL SANDER AND 80 GRIT PAPER THIS WILL NOT ROUGH THEM UP (granite), BUT GETS ANY GUNK OR DEBRIS OFF THEM.
2. CLEAN WITH A DEGREASER
3. PRIME WITH STONE COAT COUNTERTOP PRIMER
4. PAINT ON A BASE ( I USED RUSTOLEUM WHITE)
5. MIX FLOOD COAT WITH A BASE COAT AND POUR
6. ADD IN ACCENT COLORS, MICCA POWDERS (MAKE SURE TO USE OIL BASED PAINT LIKE RUSTOLEUM PAINT)
7. USE PAINT STICK TO SWIRL
8. POP BUBBLES WITH BLOW TORCH
9. WHEN READY POUR SECOND FLOOD COAT, CLEAR ONLY
10. FINAL STEP... SAND AND WAX/BUFF

Here is a video on color training...




APPLYING PRIMER AFTER I SANDED


LETTING COAT OF PRIMER DRY

PUT ON RUSTOLEUM BASE COAT IN WHITE

POURED 1ST COAT AND ADDED MY ACCENT COLORS, I USED RUSTOLUEM GREY AND GREY AND PEARL WHITE MICCA POWDERS

LETTING THE SIDES DRIP. MAKE SURE YOU TAPE AND COVER GOOD

COUNTER TOPS ALL DONE

WHAT IT LOOKED LIKE BEFORE I CHANGED EVERYTHING

THE PICTURES DO NOT DO THE MARBLING JUSTICE
Here is a video on how to create Carrara Marble.


Epoxy Countertops
I ADDED RUSTOLEUM METALLIC GOLD, FOR A CALCUTTA GOLD EFFECT ON THE ISLAND

Look at those swirls, I love how they "dance" in the Epoxy

Because I did not do the best tape job,  as you can see above with the paper towel fiasco...I spilled epoxy on the cabinets, so I had to sand and repaint. I didn't have the exact original paint and it would not color match correctly, so I ended up repainting them a white color, 
which made the brick look to stark...

You know it was just down hill from there, 
once I painted the cabinets I had to change the brick,
 then the tile... etc...
One day I will be proactive and not reactive... 
one day I will take the time to do things the right way the FIRST time...
Or at least I keep telling myself that...
In the end it all worked out and that's all that matters..

Farmhouse Kitchen

So.... I painted the brick white, but decided to leave some exposed over the stove area.
I did do a treatment on it though, and gave it an 'Old Chicago' look.
I just rubbed paint over the bricks...
 yup that's it...

So like I said, I also ended up doing new tile, I had a ton left over from upstairs, from the ORC makeover. I had originally wanted to do a subway tile of some sort, but I figured with the brick pattern it would be too much. Plus, I'm glad I didn't after I ended up painting them white anyways..
I got the subway effect after all... 



I still need to paint the inside of the cupboards... but that will be a fall project. I also want to change out the sink for a white one, but you know me... I gotta do a DIY first... can you guess it... ya I'm gonna paint that sucker....but for now.... I am actually so tired of doing projects... I kind of just told myself, I'm going to lay off for this summer and just enjoy what's left of it...


Epoxy Countertops DIY



SHOP THIS POST




Stone Coat Countertops

I honestly could not be happier with how this turned out.
My dreams of wanting  marble looking counter tops with out paying marble prices came true.


 This obviously was not the easiest DIY I have ever done, but it wasn't the hardest. Honestly, I really enjoyed it, and the prep was the hardest part. The actual pouring and swirling of the epoxy was super fun and you can be as creative or as conservative as you want.
 If you are just starting out with DIY,  they do sell a $50 test kit,
which for inexperienced folks would help you get the feel of how epoxy works... 
and if you use the code...

raisingafarmhouse

(all lowercase no spaces)
you will get $15 off your purchase, this is also good if you want to just go straight to buying everything you need. But there is a $50 minimum.

I purchased two 2 gallon kits and I had roughly around 90-95 square feet and I had some left over... so one gallon will cover 50sq ft.

You can purchase the Epoxy here and only here.

Ok, you saw earlier where I mentioned it was the 'Holy Grail' of Epoxy...pretty big claim right... so what makes this so much better than the others.
I did a lot of research so I will give you a quick break down on what I learned.

1.There's a company called Legari... they make a lot of videos... many of their customer projects look like crap because they won't share details with out you "becoming a contractor"...
they are also over priced.

2. Best Bartop Epoxy I called there CS to ask a few questions, literally idiots (that's mean let's go with less than helpful), the questions I asked regarding prep... they literally repeated what I said and would not answer them... cause they did not know, I ixnayed that real quick.

3. FX Countertop Epoxy they were actually helpful and there epoxy is good for small projects, but I felt like it yellowed, and there were too many steps just to mix it, plus it sets up quickly.

I'm sure there are many more that escaped my wrath, but these are just a
few of the major contenders when you google.

Stone Coat, was super easy to mix and pour and it has the longest time before it cures... IDK what you call it... play time? That's a poor choice, but let's go with that... you can do what you need to do with it for about 45 minutes to an hour before it starts to set up...
They were dry to the touch in 24hrs and ready for light use in 48 hrs.
They fully cured in 7 days... that's unreal... most epoxies are 30 days min.

So let's talk about the financial aspect... *I did get this project at a discount*, but let's be clear... I would have done it regardless, and I mean every positive word I have said, all opinions are 100% my own...and if I spent full price it would have cost me about
(2 ) 2 gallon kits $190 x2 = $380
1 Base Coat $20
3 Bonding Primer  $15x3=45
Total $445
plus about $50+ worth of things like plastic, brushes, rollers, drill mixer etc.
if you have nothing on hand already.

So basically, I got bomb, realistic looking marble counter tops for around
 $500
I could pour them and change them 12 times before it cost me the same amount as new counter tops... I mean, not that I would... but I like the fact, if in a couple years I want to change them,
I can sand them down and re-pour, and have new counter tops.

But when I stop and think about it, it seriously blows my mind that
 I created marble looking tops for under $500...
I would have paid double that.
To me it's worth it.
They are everything I hoped for and more and
you control how they look and the colors you want....
 what could be better?
 I mean really....

Some people choose to do just one coat, I chose to do two and eventually I will sand and buff them.
That's the awesome thing about them, if they get scuffed you can sand and buff them and if you do a second clear coat, you could do that multiple times before you even hit the painted surface.


They are non porous, so they are stain proof and food grade, I spilt (is that a word? I think that's my country speak) wine and tomato sauce on them already and left it over night, and the next morning
cleaned it right up with 409.
 It came right up.

They are so shiny, smooth and reflective, it's almost hard to take pictures. And as I said before, the pictures don't do them justice, so far EVERYONE is stunned when I tell them
"Hey, I made these."
They think they are real marble....
Some people are so shocked and say OMG they are amazing...
some people just get stupid looks on they're faces and can't say anything at all....
that's when I know they're REAL good... lol
Formica won't do that for ya folks and neither will straight painting them.

This is by far the MOST realistic looking "natural" stone you can DIY.

They are heat resistant, in this video Kathryn fries and egg and places
 the skillet right on top of the counter top.


I will probably... never... intentionally... be that brave, so I bought a trivet... lol
but it's good to know if an accident happens.

Epoxy Countertops

Here's a video for pouring Epoxy over Laminate. 







Epoxy Countertops


 In six months or so, I will probably sand and wax.
For now, I'm enjoying my almost maintenance free marble and loving my new farmhouse kitchen.
If you have any questions, feel free to ask them in the comments.
You can also contact Mike + Kathryn
stonecoatcountertops@gmail.com
www.stonecoatcountertops.com
Youtube 




What do you think about my new counter tops and my new color scheme?
I just love a white kitchen, don't you?
I would love to hear from you!
Have a great day friends!


*This post contains affiliate links*
*All opinions regarding products and mentioned companies are 100% my own,
 I stand behind every positive and negative comment typed.*

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