Iron furniture that’s used outside can take some serious abuse from the elements but these painting tips can help you give those great pieces new life! Rain, snow, and sun can cause the finish on iron benches and other iron furniture to fade, peel, and RUST. While these pieces may begin to look dull and run down, they’re usually still very sturdy and durable. Painting them will require a bit of elbow grease but it will be well worth it! Here are some step by step painting tips for prepping and painting an old iron bench with Chalk Paint® decorative paint by Annie Sloan.
Tip 1 – Cleaning
The first tip and one of the most important is to clean the piece you plan to paint. If you have a power washer available, this will work best. If you do not have a power washer, use a garden hose with spray attachment to spray the bench free of any mold, dirt, and debris. Next, wash with warm, soapy water making sure all surfaces are clean. Rinse and wash the piece one more time, with bleach water this time. The bleach water will kill bacteria and any mold or mildew that is left on the bench. Rinse again and then allow the bench to air dry in the sun.
Tip 2 – Brushing and Scraping
Now that your bench is clean, you need to remove all of the loose paint and as much of the rust as possible. Use a hard wire brush (or sandpaper) to loosen the old paint and brush the rust away. You can also use a power grinder to remove paint if you have one available but the hard wire brush will get the job done. When you’ve finished scraping the paint and rust away, use a clean brush to dust all loose particles from the bench. If possible, use an air hose to blow any dust or paint chips from the bench.
Tip 3 – Priming
No matter the project, priming is a crucial part of painting! It is so important for a couple of reasons. First, the primer seals in any rust left behind or other stains. Second, it gives a fresh and even surface for your paint to be applied to. Last, it will actually make your painted surface more durable and long lasting! You’ll want to pick up a metal primer that is meant for outdoor use. Spraying the primer will be much easier than applying it with a brush. Evenly cover the entire surface of the bench with the primer and allow to dry overnight before applying the Chalk Paint®.
Tip 4 – Painting
This of course is the most exciting and funnest part of the project, picking a paint color and product for your iron bench! While it’s important to find the right color, it’s extremely important to select the right kind of paint. Um, for our iron bench project, we used Old White Chalk Paint® Decorative Paint by Annie Sloan. We picked this particular color and paint because it matched the trim on our house, and it’s very easy to work with. I love Chalk Paint® because it can be used for all types of projects and it turns your blah pieces into something you can appreciate. Painting your iron bench. Start off by picking a paint brush that’s durable and one that can be used with all paint types. Then apply your first coat. Allow the first coat of paint to dry for several hours, and ALWAYS, no matter how well the first coat looks, apply a second coat of paint. This is very important when it comes to giving the bench a durable, long lasting finish. You can apply a top coat of urethane if desired once paint is completely dry.
Tip 5 – Maintenance
Your finished bench will look new and beautiful. To keep your bench looking great it is important to wash it often with the sprayer on your hose. Try not to allow water to stand or pool on the bench as this can cause rust over time (and you don’t want that, right?). If possible, cover the bench and store in a cool dry place for the winter months. If you’ve selected Chalk Paint® Decorative Paint by Annie Sloan, the sun should not cause excessive fading.
Before & After
It may seem like a daunting task but these painting tips will help create a beautiful bench with a long lasting finish! You can often find rusty outdoor furniture for next to nothing at flea markets and yard sales. They won’t look pretty but now that you know how to prep and paint them, they will be worth picking up!
If you’re looking to transform your old, ugly piece into something FABULOUS, be sure to check out www.anniesloan.com for your next DIY project.
Disclosure: We received some Chalk Paint® Decorative Paint by Annie Sloan in exchange for this post! No other compensation took place!