Don’t throw away that UGLY outdoor furniture! This easy DIY ANYONE can do shows how to spray paint plastic chairs without spending a lot of money or time!
Update on how this project held up at the end of this post!
I like free stuff. Free is good, but sometimes you need to spruce up the free stuff. Know what I mean?
I think you probably do because you’re reading my blog about all things repurposed, trash to treasure and DIY related.
Today’s project is a short little tutorial on how to spray paint plastic chairs. I’m thinking you probably have a couple of ugly chairs in your backyard that need a makeover, too!
When our next door neighbor of 25 years moved away she left us a round table and four chairs for extra seating in our backyard. They’ve just been hanging around on our deck but I did use them in this Fourth of July tablescape.
The chairs were in dire need of transformation and since I love pops of color I knew the backyard was the perfect place for them.
Quick tips for spray painting plastic furniture:
- Find a chair or piece of furniture.
- Clean chair.
- Let the chair dry.
- Apply first coat.
- Turn your piece over and paint any areas that will be seen.
- Repeat for a second coat on all areas.
- Add a protective top coat.
How to Spray Paint Plastic Chairs
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Step 1. Find a chair or piece of furniture.
In our neighborhood people are always throwing out chairs but you can also be on the lookout at yard sales and thrift stores.
Seriously, if everyone knew what a quick transformation a coat of spray paint provided those chairs would be snatched up!
Step 2. If necessary, sand to obtain a smooth surface.
Update: I repainted this chair 4 years later and sanded areas that needed it.
Step 3. Clean chair.
Plastic chairs tend to absorb all sorts of debris and stains from living outdoors in all types of weather.
All I did was scrub with a good cleaner (you can even get one specifically designed for plastic) but more than likely you won’t get the chair perfectly clean. That’s alright! Paint covers a multitude of sins!
Step 4. Let the chair dry.
I made sure I saved plenty of time for the plastic to dry out so the paint would adhere well. No sense skipping this step and messing up the final product!
Step 5. Apply first coat to the bottom of chair and any areas that will be seen.
Nothing fancy about spray painting. No priming is needed with this spray paint for plastic.
Just layer on a decent first coat and let it dry for about 45 minutes. Since I’m a messy painter I used plastic underneath to protect the yard. You might want to put on old shoes, too. ~eye roll~
Step 6. Turn your piece over and paint remaining areas.
You don’t have to waste paint on the underside of the seat but check for nooks and crannies that will be visible. Let dry for another few minutes.
Step 7. Repeat for a second coat on all areas.
I found two coats to be sufficient, which ended up using about 1 1/2 cans of paint per chair. I’m probably a little more liberal with the paint than my husband but for just a few bucks you’ve got brand new chairs!
Step 8. Add a protective top coat.
We actually chose a matte color and wanted a top coat that was also a gloss. But I recommend that you seal your chairs with a protective top coat, especially if they will be seeing any kind of weather.
Once I finished the chairs I knew I wanted to use them around our fire pit.
We have a variety of available seating, including two shabby chic benches, which really means they’re falling apart and are being held up by a support! Not good so my new bright red chairs will add color and sass as we sit around the fire.
Perfect for some self care for mama. Such simple words that really mean “mama needs to take better care of herself because life is stressful.” Can anyone relate?
On a recent cool morning that’s exactly what I did. I took some time to create a beautiful little spot by the fire.
I chose to stop long enough to breath in deeply, enjoy a muffin and spend time journaling and talking to God.
Mr. Carson was my furry companion!
I’m passionate about helping women learn to create a treasured home without spending a lot of time and money. I think learning how to spray paint plastic chairs qualifies as one of the easiest DIY projects anyone can do!
What do you think? Do you have some old chairs or furniture you want to paint now?
Chair update: these chairs lasted 2-3 years out in the elements in our backyard. I sprayed them again with a gloss and love how it looks! It doesn’t have to be perfect especially if there is no protection from weather.
More painting tips: