The counter top was formica and came with the set of cabinets. It was gold and truly ugly. HeWho was going to toss it, but I vetoed that idea. It had to be cut into pieces to fit, since the cabinet layout was not the same footprint as the kitchen it came out of.
I assured HeWho doubts my DIY abilities at times, that I had plans. There is a product you can pick up at a builders supply called Featherlite and turn that old counter top into a concrete counter top. I did just that. That was several years back. I sealed it according to the instructions, but it still stained easily. I was happy with the results, but the areas I used the most turned dark, while the least used areas were really light.
After painting all the cabinets without covering the counter it looked pretty rough. I launched a search for new ideas and came across one on Pinterest. I read it very carefully and made a list for HeWho loves to run errands. Good thing I read it several times, because I cannot find that same article I read.
The first step was painting the surface with Zinser oil base primer. Two coats. I did this yesterday and still managed to cook supper! I put the second coat on right before bedtime. Oil base paint is quite aromatic and the house really stunk last night. Or, so I was told. I am so used to smelling paint and all the stuff that goes with it I barely notice.
This morning I found a similar article that suggested dabbing the lighter of the colors you are using, the creating the vein with a feather in the darker color. I did not purchase a feather, but I did purchase a sponge. Can you see the look on the face of HeWho gets my lists via text if I had put "feather" on it? Since it said to use acrylic paints I picked up 4 colors in gray and the sea sponge when I got groceries. The sponge was $1 (Dollar Tree) and the paints totaled $2 (50 cents each, Walmart).
HeWho bought the primer for $20 and the Polycrylic for $18. I already have brushes and stuff, so this cost me less than $50!! Now, this is something I can really get excited about!
The instructions on the similar article said to pounce the light gray onto an area with the sponge, then, using the feather dipped in the darker color, pull it through that area and create the vein. I did. It looked like an art project for pre-school. I knew I was not going to keep that, so I grabbed the can of the white paint I used on the upper cabinets and painted over that whole mess.
Then I pulled a picture up on my computer and used my own imagination and paint brushes. Forget that feather and sponge!
I have applied the first two coats of the poly. I can get another coat on before bed tonight. It dries really fast. Two more coats tomorrow and then I want to let it dry for another 24 hours before I
actually put that counter in use. Alas, I will be unable to cook up an elaborate feast for HeWho is hungry!