DIY Concrete Counters
Here is round two of our concrete counter top making.
We re-used the melamine board on the bottom but utilized different siding to be screwed in to make the frames. We didn't have any caulking when we started and were anxious to get going so we used painter's tape. On one of them I wanted to try some stone inlay I found at Hobby Lobby for a few dollars. So I placed them strategically on the bottom, because the bottom is to be our counter top!
We decided to make these counter tops only an inch and a half thick. It saves us some weight when having to carry them.
Below you can see the river stones I found. There's more in here than you think for $3!
After the research we did, we found using 100% carnuba wax on the mold would help it not stick. For a few extra bucks, we did it!
My husband used his paint sprayer and a sand coat made thinner to get through the nozzle to spray in the first layer of concrete. We watched some YouTube videos and saw this worked great so we tried it out. It got it into the corners and spread the first coat evenly. Plus it did not move the rocks around much at all.
This is the first layer settling for a minute (below)
We each took a clean paint brush and began to softly flatten out this first spray coat. It began to remove any bubbles and packed in the concrete a bit more.
My husband then used Quikrete that has rocks in it for the rest of the layers to fill it in so it was solid and wouldn't crack. It was crack resistant concrete.
We let it sit for a bit and then my husband began hitting the table from the bottom with a mallet to bump out any more bubbles. You can see them popping when you do this right!
About two and a half days later we pulled them from their molds. They fell right now (not literally) but they didn't stick at all. It pulled away from the mold cleanly. It is amazing to me how smooth the tops (which was the bottom we sprayed) came out.
Here is another pulled from the mold but still drying before we can polish.
You can see the one with the rocks they are poking through, so a little bit of polishing should bring them right to the surface.
Just so you can see where we poured the counters... lay out some plastic, especially if you're spraying!
When pulled from the molds before any polishing or sanding they looked really cool! This is about 2 days later.
The stones really came through after a light sanding...
Getting sanded/polished - final look.
Up close and personal with inlay stone.
Stone inlay counter installed into a small vanity. You can see a seam because we poured it backwards! But we were able to cut it and place it so it looked intentional.
I've been using the counter top for a few weeks. As a makeup reviewer, I spill and have high heat hair tools on top of this daily. It is doing great! Easy to clean!
Above is one of the smaller hallway counters we made and installed. I love how clean and modern it looks. So much better than the Formica that was there before!
The whole process took about a week and cost less than $50.
We are in the process of making counters for all of the bathrooms and are considering it for our kitchen as well. We are able to save THOUSANDS of dollars by doing this ourselves which makes our home clean, modern and livable for us. Should we ever sell, and someone doesn't like it, they can simply replace them. But I hope somebody else loves them as much as we do.