*Update 5/19/20* It’s been a few years since we first installed the amazing DIY faux marble contact paper. And guess what? I can 1000% vouch for it. Besides normal wear and tear, I am happy to report very little holes and rips. Here’s the original post way back when.
Do you ever get SO sick of something dated in your house you simply want to take a hammer and start demo-ing yourself?
Welp, that is the current sitch with my black granite kitchen countertops. Believe me, I am completely aware that it looks fine and many people would be very happy with it.
But since we inherited the previous owner’s choices, it just made it really hard to love as my own. You know what I mean right?
*Drum roll pleazzzzzz*
DIY Kitchen Makeover
Isn’t this amazing?!!
And would you believe it cost me not more than $40 to change up the countertops? YES. $40.
How Anita? Howwwww??
I was intrigued. I couldn’t believe my eyes. And yet, very, very skeptical.
I hate knock offs that have a bad quality look. I rather live with my existing drab countertops. But, then…I *literally* was so tired of the black.
My kitchen does not get great light most of the day. With the black countertops, every morning my first greeting of the day to get coffee was very uninspiring.
As a designer, I find artistry in my daily life. And this kitchen stuck a big pitchfork in my design heart every.single.day.
So I went on Amazon and ordered one roll for a test run. It made sense to try the kitchen island first.
Read on to find out how I managed this unexpectedly mind-blowing project!
Things you need to cover countertops
- box cutter
- measuring stick
- credit card, squeegee
Make sure to clean your countertops before you start!
Next measure how much contact paper you need.
Always, always do a test run! Ours turned out awesome except there were a couple *huge* hurdles.
Amazing tips on faux Marble contact paper
We learned many challenges right upfront. First thing, the corners. Most Youtube videos we saw had square edges. Much easier to cover. With round and large rounded edges at that, we were very hesitant about even starting this project.
But I pressed on to Travis’ dismay! Ha! Poor dude. Always along for the design ride despite his hesitation on the result.
*Update 5/19/20: We have learned that using our hand pressure is best to get the bubbles out. It’s become more of an art than science. But you can apply sublte to firm pressure depending on the air bubble.*
After many videos later, we found a DIY video on using a heat gun or hairdryer to make the contact paper pliable then pulled with just enough strength to cover. Two things: 1) No direct heat. Swirl the blow dryer around high to give heat but not too close or it will melt like butter. And 2) when you pull, not too strong! We made holes so take caution and biggest lesson, TAKE YOUR TIME.
AH-mazing right??!!! You guys, I thought I’d died and gone to design heaven.
*Update 5/19/20* When we updated my mom’s powder room vanity countertop, her pro heat gun was way better than the craft one we used here. Blowdryers do not provide enough heat. Here is the link.
The biggest challenge for DIY contact paper countertops
The kitchen sink was by far our biggest challenge. It was curved every which way and set underneath the countertop. So the edges had to be folded over.
Trav literally would stare at the sink for a good 20 min. before proceeding. Finally being the efficient project manager I am, I said, hurry up dude! Don’t overthink it. I am such an encouraging partner am I not? *wink*
*Update 5/19/20* Trav found an ingenious way to cut the sink holes if you don’t want to take the faucet out!
He used a craft circle cutter that could cut any size circle perfectly!
Another caveat to this project is that for my kind of sink configuration, the water easily seeps under the paper and it detaches easily. I am currently thinking of some solutions and will post updates. Many of you have sinks where it is flush and should have no issues.
*Update 5/19/20* We’ve had very little water damage to the sink coming undone at the edges. Considering that we barely wipe down after each use, the sink has held up 75% since install. I would say that is incredible!
If you are diligent about wiping it dry, I dare say you would have minimal ungluing and could keep the sink intact by 85%.
THIS IS HOW CONFIDENT I AM THAT THIS IS YOUR DIY SOLUTION!
So there you have it! A fully transformed space that truly was on budget and I couldn’t have imagined anything better!!
Now when I come downstairs doing my coffee first routine, I breathe a deep sigh of happiness.
*Update 5/19/20* I STILL DO!
Yes, there still are things I want to change but cannot. So, for now, I can at least live with my design choices even if they are a temporary fix.
I hope this encourages you to tackle something in your home you thought was hopeless or too $$$.
Where there is a will, there IS a way!