Well it has taken about two years (give or take a month or two), but my utility closet is almost finished, and I finally have a countertop!
(By the way, I apologize for the dark pictures. Two of the three light bulbs in my hallway light were burned out, and I didn’t have any extras on hand.)
I decided to stain the countertop, and when the good people at Rustoleum said that would send me samples of their new wood care products, I jumped at that chance! So when my Rustoleum wood stain and matte finish polyurethane arrived yesterday, I scrapped my original plans for the afternoon and made my little countertop instead. Sadly, I ran out of time, so I still haven’t polyurethaned the countertop. I’ll do that today, and I’m so anxious to try out the matte finish polyurethane! Did I tell you that Rustoleum’s new polyurethane requires soap and water cleanup? Yep! It’s true! Soap and water!
So you’ll have to wait bit longer to see the countertop with its pretty matte finish, but for now, I’ll show you how I made this wood countertop with the faux routed edge. Doesn’t it look like it has a pretty double ogee edge?
Anyway, I’ve used a similar process before to make a table top, and it turned out beautifully. So if you need a countertop, desk top, or table top, you might give this a try. It’s pretty inexpensive and easy!
I started out with a piece of cabinet grade plywood. I used my circular saw to cut it to the correct size.
Now let me say that I’m cheap (you know that), so instead of purchasing a full piece of plywood and cutting it to the right size that would fully cover the depth of my cabinets plus give the the appropriate amount of overhang at the front, I instead used a cheap quarter piece of plywood (called a Handy Panel at Home Depot). It was exactly 24″ deep, so I had to get creative. I used this 1/4″ X 2″ piece of wood to attach to the front…
And with the thin side up, I attached that piece of moulding to the front edge of the countertop. Using the thin side up gives the impression that the countertop is a thick piece of wood with a routed edge.
So I used thin strips of wood (I’m not even sure what these are called, or what their intended purpose is) to create a “frame” around the edge to cover the gaps. Yes, actual carpenters, I know you’re shaking your head right now. But we non-carpenter DIY types have to make do with our less-than-perfect wood cutting skills.
On areas like this, I really lay it on thick, let it dry completely, and then use my electric sander to sand it down until it’s perfectly smooth. On the other areas (nail holes), I just sand those by hand.
I was less than thrilled with the particular piece of plywood that I chose. Once it was stained, it looked a bit splotchy (I assure you, that’s the wood, not the stain). It’s just so hard to know how a piece of wood is going to look once it’s stained! You can pick a piece that looks so smooth, with very little grain in its unfinished state, but as soon as you get stain on it, you see grain and pattern in it that wasn’t visible before. But in the whole scheme of things, I’m okay with it. I doubt that anyone else will scrutinize my countertop like I do.
By the way, this is the same technique I used when I remade John & Alice’s breakfast table…