Transform an old pine workbench into a unique and attractive kitchen butcher’s block in this DIY.

A pine workbench has many possibilities. Here we’ve given it a Provenial colour scheme with a distressed paint finish and a lick of ebony wood stain for an authentic looking butcher’s block. Follow these easy steps to do it yourself.

Materials you will need:

  • 600 x 900mm pine workbench
  • Two reclaimed shutters or half louvre doors
  • Woodoc gel stain – Ebony
  • 1ℓ each of Evolve interior waterbased paint – white and Aged Boot
  • Woodoc Waterborne Floor Sealer – gloss or matt
  • Router
  • Wooden dolly pegs
  • Fired Earth Brushed Metal – Foxy
  • 50mm screws
  • Bloc-It Pro painter’s tape
  • Cloth
  • Sandpaper
  • Small pine off cut
  • Pencil

Preparation:

Give the workbench a light sanding and wipe off the dust. If your wood is raw, the frame of the workbench and the shutters should be primed with a white wood primer. If the wood has been previously painted, give it a coat of universal undercoat before painting to ensure the paint bonds well. The raw wood top of the workbench is going to be stained so don’t prime it after sanding.

Step 1

Follow the on-pack instructions and assemble your workbench.

Step 2

To create a tongue-and-groove effect on the workbench top, measure and mark evenly spaced lines parallel to the long side of the worktop.

Step 3

Use your router and a straightcut router bit to cut in free-hand lines to resemble plank grooves. If you wobble a little, don’t worry, it gives the surface shabby chic character in keeping with the distressed paint finish you’ll do for the frame.

Step 4

Brush off all dust particles and wipe with a damp cloth for good measure. Apply the Woodoc gel stain to the workbench top using a cloth. Apply it evenly and follow the grain of the wood, then remove any excess with a dry cloth. Allow to dry for four hours. If you want a deeper colour, re-apply another layer and leave to dry.

Step 5

To give the surface an aged look, lightly sand it before sealing with Woodoc Waterborne Floor Sealer. This is a hardy coating that will stand up to the wear and- tear of a kitchen surface. Seal the wood with two coats, allowing it to dry thoroughly between coats.

Step 6

Paint the primed frame of your workbench with one layer of white waterbased PVA by applying it with a sponge roller for a smooth finish. Leave to dry thoroughly, as per the manufacturer’s recommendations.

Step 7

Apply a coat of Evolve Aged Boot over the white and wipe the edges of the wood with a dry cloth to expose the white. This is a very easy technique to achieve a distressed finish. Leave to dry.

Step 8

To further distress the wood, take a piece of 220-grit sandpaper and lightly sand the edges of the legs and frame as well as a few random places elsewhere on the frame to further expose the white.

Step 9

Seal the entire bottom section with two layers of Woodoc Waterborne Floor Sealer. Allow the first coat to dry thoroughly before applying the second.

Step 10

For the shutters (after following the preparation instructions), mask off the slats with painter’s tape and paint the outer frame with Evolve Aged Boot to tie in with the workbench. You can either leave it as a solid color or do the same distressed effect as the rest of the frame. Paint the slats with two coats of white. If you’ve distressed the paint, you will need to seal it with the Woodoc as per the workbench.

Step 11

Mark up and drill pilot holes to attach the shutters to each side of the workbench using 50mm screws.

Step 12

To finish off the look we colour dipped the dolly pegs in Fired Earth Brushed Metal, a gritty paint which adds texture. We used the colour Foxy. Simply dip the top part of the peg in the paint and leave to dry on an egg carton.

Top Tip: Use the shutter sides of the workbench to peg some of your favorite recipes on or simply slip half of a food magazine into the shutter slat for safe keeping and easy reference. Now you have a nostalgic piece of furniture that reminds us of the warm and inviting French Provençal kitchens.

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