Some years ago we purchased a set of “natural” colored plastic wicker furniture for the back deck.
Unfortunately, over the past several years, snowfall has been tremendous
and the gazebo – tent~like thing gave up the ghost under the weight of all that snow. We replaced the tent-like thing twice. After the second full collapse we resigned ourselves to the fact that it was never going to be a permanent kind of structure, and left the plastic wicker stuff to fade and look unsightly under the oppressive summer sun.
I considered replacing it. But, the thought of spending upwards of $700.00 for something no one was ever going to spend much time on was inconceivable. (Did tell you I was cheap? I believe I did… numerous times.)
So… repainting it seemed like a good option.
There are a couple of options for painting plastic-like things.
Krylon Maxx (around $4.00 per can) is supposed to work on all types of materials (including plastic). However, in doing a couple of test locations the paint scratched off under a fingernail with very little effort.
Krylon Fusion ((between $3.75 nd $4.00 per can) might be a viable option. But every outlet that was supposed to carry it has been switching out Fusion for Maxx. I was only able to find a Gloss Black and an odd Purple color – neither of which rang any bells for me. I did try a test spot with the Black Fusion just to see how it fared. Although it is intended to bond with plastic, after a week I could flex the wicker; causing small flecks of paint to come loose from the finish.
I settled on a product from Rust-oleum – Painter’s Touch Ultra Cover ($3.85 per can). It provides a good, thick coating with a resilient finish. After a one week test, the finish bonded as advertised. Even now, a month after repainting, the finish is durable and scratch resistant.
Now, there is another option – Marine Vinyl Recolorant. I hedged on mentioning it simply because the cost is $18.00 a can. At that price, you’d just be better off buying new furniture (you’ll see why a bit later on).
You will need:
1 – Paint. Use this guide to estimate your own needs:
- End Tables – 1 Can
- Arm Chair – 2 1/2 Cans
- Love Seat – 6 Cans
- As the paint is combined paint & primer, you wont need to figure on extra primer.
2 – Sudsy Ammonia – Even if you are painting new pieces, you’ll need to remove any scale or factory oil and residue before painting to insure a good bonding.
3 – Large Bucket
4 – A couple of good scrub brushes.
5 – Water Hose
6 – Drop Cloth
7 – A good ventilated outside area
Mixing the ammonia 1 part to 4 parts water, scrub a good coating of solution all over the piece. Allow to sit for 10 minutes. Give it another scrubbing, then rinse thoroughly. Allow to dry completely.
Lay out the drop cloth. Beginning with the underside. Spray a light even coat over all exposed surfaces. Allow to dry for 15 minutes. Repeat.
Rotate the piece a 1/4 turn – repeat the paint process. Do this for each quarter turn.
A good rule of thumb when spray painting – Only operate the sprayer in 2-second bursts.
Choose a 1 to 2 foot area, begin moving your hand before you depress the sprayer so that your movements are even and fluid, and you reduce the chance of over-spray and drips in the finish.
( NOTE: there is a plastic pistol grip spray attachment you can buy to snap onto the top of the can. However, I found that constant depressing weakens the plastic trigger, making it unreliable shortly into the painting process.)
Flip the piece over and repeat with all the exposed top surfaces. Allow the paint to cure for 1 hour. Inspect each piece and give another coat where the finish looks light. Allow the finish to cure a minimum of 24 hours before using or accessorizing with pillows.
All in all, I spent $2.00 on the ammonia, just over $50 for the paint and another $60 total for cushions (on sale at Walmart.) …. You’re right, it’s still not cheap. But it’s a helluva lot better than this –