The joys of getting married and combining two separate lives into one cohesive home can be challenging and fun all at the same time.  But, it can also get expensive when you are getting rid of the old and buying new things (all the while needing more storage space because there is twice the stuff). In order to keep things on budget I got thrifty, I decided to try and bring some new life to an old hand-me-down bench my husband has had since he moved into the house we now share over 12 years ago.

This was a fun project with little risk since the plan was to get rid of the bench prior to my decision to try and give it a makeover.  My husband has lived in our house for 12 years and it was filled with tans and browns. Since I moved in, I have slowly been bringing color into all the rooms inside. I finally decided it was time to bring some color outside and this bench was the perfect way to do it for minimal money!

The project was done in one day. In retrospect I probably could have finished in half a day, but it’s usually best not to rush painting project. I was also working on other things while waiting for the paint to dry.  It cost me about $10 because I used a lot of stuff I already had on hand.


  • Old bench
  • Various grit sandpaper ranging from 60-150 Sandpaper 
  • Outdoor Paint (I used Diamond Hard by Majic Paints in Serenity) I got 1 pint from Hobby Lobby for $10.
  • Rust-oleum Hammered in Dark Bronze – This was left over from an old project and is only needed if you have metal parts that need refinishing. Spray Paint
  • 1 ½ inch angled paint brush (or whatever your preferred paint brush is)
  • Painters tape & Plastic (Optional)


  1. Start by sanding the wood parts of the bench down. Start with the roughest sandpaper and work your way up to the smoothest.  You should remove all, or as much as possible, of the old finish from the wood.
  2. Clean off any dust and debris to prep the wood for paint. If you have metal in your bench like I do, I would recommend taping off the metal portion if you are not refinishing the metal piece as well.
  3. Mix paint and start applying the new color following the wood grain
  4. Allow to dry and apply a second coat 
  5. Once the second coat has dried, tape off and cover in plastic to protect the freshly painted wood pieces while you spray paint the metal parts of the bench.
  6. Remove tape and plastic and touch up any parts of the wood that got spray paint on them.
  7. Allow to dry and you are finished!

Lessons learned:

  • Make sure the tape and plastic are secure and won’t move while you are spray painting to avoid needing to do any touch up
  • Taking the bench apart likely would have made the painting much easier but I wasn’t sure if all the screws would come out or what was rusted in place.  If your bench is newer I would recommend taking it apart to paint.

Next up for me is to finish the rest of the front porch decorations!