DIY Countertop Revival

Kitchen Yesterday
This is the perfect project for renters or apartment dwellers! Are your kitchen countertops ugly and dated? Use contact paper to revive them! All you need for this project is decorative contact paper or adhesive shelf liner, which I found at Target for $5.24; clear caulk (about $3 at any home improvement store); a razor blade or box cutter; and finally, Mod Podge or a food-safe sealant. I searched a lot of stores for shelf liner in a black and white design,and on my expedition I found many options: faux wood grain, faux stainless steel, and other cute options that just didn't happen to match my vision, but may be perfect for your home. Get creative with your countertops!
Time: 1 Hour Cost: $10 Difficulty: Easy
This project is very detail-oriented, as the laying of contact paper can get pretty tedious. It's sticky, but it is easy to remove and realign, so you can give yourself a few shots at laying the paper down without bubbles or wrinkles.
The first step is to wipe down your counter with soap and water, and allow it to dry. This is really important because the contact paper sticks better to clean surfaces.
After the area dries, measure your counter space. You will have to have a seam between two strips of contact paper; I recommend creating as few seams as you can. I added 1/2" extra on each side, which I trimmed more precisely later.
1. Remove the backing in small pieces, to avoid a sticky mess; 2. Trim the edges close to the wall; 3. Add clear caulk along the wall seams; 4. (Opt.) Use sealant for protection (my counter here is not for food, so I used Mod Podge).
Some advice: When making a seam with two strips of contact paper, overlap about an inch. That way the opportunity for food or water to slither its way underneath is slim.
The best part? The counters will easily be restored when I move--I'll just peel them up and scrape off the caulk with a razor. Good luck with your counters, and have fun!

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  • Madilyn
    Madilyn Warren, MI
    I actually used beautiful scrap booking paper on my bathroom counter and wrapping paper on my kitchen. Today there are such pretty papers out there it is hard to resist covering every surface! lol You can use scrap booking paper in the kitchen as well
  • Deborah Pickens Johnson
    How heat resistance is this for the kitchen counter
  • Madilyn
    Madilyn Warren, MI
    I used seven coats of Minwax poly acrylic and I sanded lightly between coats with 320 grit sandpaper. I then used a food safe sealer that a friend gave me. Unfortunately I don't recall the name. Be sure to caulk around the sink. My counters still look great.
  • Teresa Cantwell Marshall
    Cute idea...
  • Megan
    Megan Aurora, CO
    This is going to rip and tear in a short amount of time. This is not good for high traffic even moderately used counters. I would find a more suitable means to fix the problem.
Megan Poletti