How to Pour Concrete Counter Tops

by Laura on September 24, 2012

We always knew we wanted concrete as our counter top.
I love the rough industrial look of grey concrete.
We both researched a lot on DIY concrete counter tops. Most articles were using forms to pour the concrete in then place that on top of your lower cabinets.
Well we eliminated that step and simply poured directly onto a frame that we made which sat directly on top of the lower cabinets. No moving a 100 lb slab of concrete here!

Supply List For Pouring Concrete Counter tops:
Concrete
Concrete adhesion binder
Plywood for wood base
1×3’s & 1×2’s for frame/mold
Plastic sheets to cover cabinets/floor
Masking or Painters tape
Metal bars/fencing
Concrete mixer / wheel barrel
Trowel
Sander
Sealer of choice
FYI Cost Breakdown: around $75! The only things we had to buy were the concrete, adhesion, & plastic sheets. Everything else was re-purposed supplies we already had.
Still….totally worth the savings with buying all the supplies!
Start with a plan! MM plan….
 {we used maximizer from Home Depot}
 We first had our lower cabinets in place then placed plywood down to act as the base of the counter top.
I then taped on the plastic sheets that would cover the cabinets and floors from dripping concrete.
Markie Mark then built the outside frame that would act as a mold for the edges and lip of the counter top. This was screwed into the frame.
The counter top sticks out 1.5inches and has a lip underneath. This gives the look of a real thick top, when it’s not!
 I then taped off all the seams and edges to prevent any drips.
All of the edges got a coating of oil, to help the form come off smoothly.
The top of the plywood base got a coat of concrete adhesive and MM also mixed this into the concrete mix for better adhesion.
Our awesome mixer…the wheel barrel and a shovel.
 MM marked a line on the wall to help us keep the concrete level.
 Place Metal supports that the concrete will mix into. We had left over fencing from our veggie garden / chicken coop wire.
Now throw it down and smooth it out with a trowel.
 Have a little helper with a water bottle to help smooth out bumps and keeps the concrete workable.
 This is what it looked like the morning after. Kinda rough. Thank goodness for sandpaper!
 ummm very dusty. wear a mask. multitask with vacuum.
 I love the rougher edges and texture. MM wanted a little smoother.
 Cottage Cheese concrete will happen. We used Quikcrete concrete resurfacer to get a thin top coat on the edges and top. This was a great product for a thin coat without any rocks. Then Sand Sand Sand again!
We wanted a High-Gloss wet look. We used Behr’s Wet-Look Sealer and a low nap roller to apply to the top. We did several thin coats.
I love the natural grey, with texture. It will be the perfect rough compliment to our sleek cabinets!!
 Update!
cabinets in
countertops in
appliances in
sink in {hallelujah!}
 Our to do list is slightly shorter.
My little helpers.
XO Laura
Click pic to catch up!

 

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MOM September 25, 2012 at 4:59 am

The KITCHEN WINDOW —add to the list :)

I love the way the countertops turned out!!!

Sarah @ 20 State September 26, 2012 at 8:06 am

Love them, the kitchen is going to look fantastic!

Linda @ it all started with paint September 26, 2012 at 12:33 pm

Wow you are so brave … and adventurous! I’m truly impressed!

:)

Linda

the cape on the corner September 26, 2012 at 4:58 pm

that is awesome, good for you guys!

Krista March 16, 2013 at 9:35 pm

It is incredible that you guys did this yourself! Wow! Do you think you could stain them before sealing them if you wanted a slightly different colour? How did you get the edges so smooth… just sanding?? Way to go – true DIYers! Thanks for the tutorial,
Krista @ thehappyhousie.com

Krista March 16, 2013 at 9:37 pm

Oh I read again… you used a concrete resurfacer to fix the cottage cheesy edges. Is that something you just trowel on after and then sand sand sand?
Thanks!
Krista

Laura March 17, 2013 at 9:03 pm

You can stain the concrete any color after you have applied it. We used Kemiko concrete stain on our floors, and loved the finish product, it was a translucent coloring that marbled and gave aloty of depth with color.

For the Concrete resurfacer we bascicaly just skimmed coated the top and edges with trowel the next day after we poured the countertops.—then sand sand sand!
Thank you so much for stopping by, If you do this Id love to see pics!!
:) Laura

albe February 12, 2014 at 3:39 am

What’s the lenght of the overhang where the bar stools are? Is there a brace/truss for the overhang of some sort under it? Thanks!! albe

Laura March 7, 2014 at 6:36 pm

Hi ALbe , our overhang is approximately 13 inches. No braces. We built the mold out of wood for our countertops, this is the support for the overhang. So far has held up well, even after myself standing on the edge of it to paint the ceiling!

Tony March 13, 2014 at 8:31 pm

If you would have vibrated the concrete like you’re supposed to, you wouldn’t have air pockets. Holding an orbital sander against the backside of the form is an effective way to do this.

Laura March 16, 2014 at 9:36 am

Thanks for the tip, I really appreciate it. THis was definitely a fun learning process, Im almost a pro now :)

Kale May 26, 2015 at 8:48 am

Looking at your form, it’s a 2×4 screwed into the widest piece of plywood, right? What’d you do with the excess wood at the finish? Unscrew the vertical molds, but then what with the bottom mold that allows the overhang/lip?

Jason Roland August 28, 2015 at 9:57 am

Working with concrete on a daily basis, I love to see it used indoors for amazing projects like this. You did an amazing job and I really think this is something the average DIY homeowner can attempt. Thanks for sharing!

Laura September 2, 2015 at 1:31 pm

Hay Jason,, thanks so much! Its so versatile and fun to see what we can do with it.

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