How to Make Recycled Paper Countertops

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Use recycled paper, along with pourable liquid acrylic resin, to create a countertop. You can get the look you want by varying the color, weight, thickness and style of paper. By varying the amount of shredded paper encased in the acrylic resin, the countertop will have a solid-looking color or the appearance of confetti encased in acrylic.

Things You'll Need

  • Cross-cut paper shredder
  • Paper
  • Aluminum flashing tape
  • 2-part pourable liquid acrylic resin
  • Disposable container
  • Toothpick
  • Straw
  • Wooden molding
  • Construction adhesive
  • Marine-grade varnish
  • Natural-bristle paintbrush
  • Run the paper through the cross-cut shredder to create the confetti.

  • Paint the counter top a background color that coordinates with your kitchen's decor. Gently rough-up the surface with extra-fine steel wool. This will help the acrylic resin better adhere to it.

  • Apply aluminum flashing tape to the perimeter of the countertop to keep the resin from dripping over the edge before it hardens. Extend the tape at least 2 inches over the top of the existing countertop.

  • Scatter the confetti on the countertop. Add a small amount for a confetti-specked counter top. The paint color of the background will be the dominant color in this style. Otherwise, pile the paper shreds to a depth 1/2 inch. This will create a somewhat solid-looking countertop with the color of the paper shreds or confetti creating the dominant color.

  • Pour equal amounts of both components of the liquid acrylic resin into a large, disposable container. Stir the two liquids together, scraping down the sides of the container, until the resin is well-mixed.

  • Pour the acrylic resin onto the countertop from a height of about 24 inches. Pour it in a slow stream so the shredded paper doesn't wash away. If making a confetti-style of countertop, put down a layer of acrylic about 1/8 to 1/4 inch thick. For a countertop with up to 1/2 inch of paper shreds, pour acrylic resin deep enough to secure the paper confetti shreds but not thick enough to cover them.

  • Allow the first coat of acrylic resin to dry, following the manufacturer's recommendations. As the first coat dries, pop any air bubbles that form on the surface, using a sharp object like a toothpick. After you pop an air bubble, smooth the edges of the remaining crater with the side of the toothpick. You can also try to blow out the bubbles, using a straw. As long as the sides of popped air bubbles are smoothed out, they are not visible when the second coat is poured on.

  • Pour a second coat of acrylic resin, making it deep enough to completely encase the shredded paper confetti, following the same methods as when pouring the first coat.

  • Remove the aluminum flashing tape and allow the resin to dry and cure, following the manufacturer's recommended timetable.

  • Cover the edges of the counter top with wooden molding, in your choice of style. Attach the wood trim to the resin countertop with construction glue.

  • Apply a coat of marine-grade varnish to the top and wooden edges of the counter top, using a large natural-bristle paintbrush. The varnish will protect the resin from nicks and scratches.

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References

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