Park Bench Makeover-Upcycling Wrought Iron Outdoor Furniture

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One doesn’t think about resurrecting furniture, but there are times I swear that the things I find have no heartbeat! I mean D E A D dead! Just like this park bench, I found on the side of the road. It’s the nurse in me that wants to save everything, especially furniture. Besides, it was FREE!

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The Park Bench Makeover

Park Bench Makeover... it was so worth it! Up-cycling old outdoor furniture on a budget.

Talk about rough shape, this park bench had seen better days. The only salvageable part was the wrought iron end pieces. A good cleaning and fresh coat of paint will make a world of difference. But before I could even think about paint, I had a real overhaul on my hands. All of the wood slats were rotten and decayed.

Supplies list for this Park Bench Makeover:

Using my bolt cutters, I quickly removed the rusty bolts from the rod iron that he;d the slats in place. I'll be replacing them with new ones.This is where I called for reinforcements. Mr. Honey Do to the rescue! We used a pair of bolt cutters to remove the old rusty bolts from the park bench. The bolts and screws were rusty and this was a quick easy removal.

We used the old boards as templates and purchased new slats. Nothing fancy, just your basic inexpensive pine.

Staining The Wood Slats On the Park Bench

I applied the VooDoo Gel Stain to the replacement slats for the park bench. It gave the wood a beautiful weathered look.The wood slats got a beautiful weathered gray look with Dixie Belle’s Up In Smoke VooDoo Gel stain. Fast and easy and it’s water-based. A great product to use if you’re sensitive to oil-based products and the strong smells. Working inside, it’s important to me to use those products that work and are safe for indoor use. This park bench is going to look amazing!

Spray Painting The Rod Iron

The wrought iron ends of the park bench had some areas of rust, not to mention it was faded and just not pretty. The quick fix for this was Rustoleum Hammered Paint and Primer all in one. I sprayed two light coats allowing dry time between each coat. I love this look. It’s perfect for those rough metal surfaces that need a new look. The coverage is amazing and will look nice on the park bench.

Securing The Wood Slats To The Park Bench

A gyroscopic inline screwdriver was used to attach the wood slats to the rod iron end pieces of the park bench.We pre-measured and drilled the holes where the carriage bolts were to be attached to the end pieces of the park bench. After drilling the holes on each end of the wood slats we used a cool new tool called a Gyroscopic Inline Screwdriver. Righty tighty, lefty loosey! It’s all in the wrist action. Gosh, I love cool tools! This one belonged to Mr. Honey Do. It may not have mysteriously lost its way back to his toolbox.

Flipping the bench over made it easy to tighten all the bolts from the underside.

The Park Bench Reveal!

This park bench makeover was worth every penny. There's a lot of satisfaction in saving these old pieces.


This would make the perfect outdoor porch bench for my front porch.Oh my goodness! What a transformation! The total cost of this french inspired park bench makeover was less than $30. I think this would make a great bench for a mudroom too! I’ve done a few of these bench makeovers. Check out this catty leopard inspired bench I made from an old headboard. CLICK HERE to see the full makeover.

Until the next project… xo Do

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Park Bench Makeover-Upcycling Wrought Iron Outdoor Furniture


  • What a great project, Do! I have a park bench that’s in need of some new loving and your blog post just inspired me to take it apart, give it love, and put it back together again. Love! <3

  • Thanks, Jennifer! I was very pleased with how it turned out. I’m sure you know not all of them are a huge success. #reallife
    Oh, please share it when it’s done. I love a good transformation story.

    xo, Do

  • Thanks, Christine! Hope you come back soon. I’m always sharing my projects, DIY and a little biz on the side. xo

  • Hi. I also salvaged a bench but couldn’t find a long metal to support the bottom of bench. We don’t really sit on it because I’m afraid it’ll break. Where did you find the bottom supports? Thank you

  • Hi Yolanda,

    I didn’t replace any of the parts on this bench. Everything was original. I just cleaned and repainted them. The only thing new is the replacement boards. It’s a challenge to find parts for sure. Good luck.

  • Where did you find the slats having a hard time finding any that would work.

  • My hubby picked them up at Lowes. I just cut them to the length I needed. You may have to ask for the service desk. Good luck.

  • Your bench turned out great. My husband is restoring ours as we speak. He bought it for me when my daughter was born. It was so where nice to sit on the porch and watch the children. .

  • What a special project, Julie! So, maybe now you can sit and watch your Grandchildren grow up. It’s the best.

    xo, Do

  • I agree with you, Marilyn! Keep up the good work.

    xo, Do

  • Thank you for posting this. My husband dragged home a park bench about 6 years ago. And has been sitting in the basement. Now I know what to do with this bench and to get it out of my basement.

  • LOL, Lori! I know what you mean. I’m sure it will be a gem to be cherished after the makeover. Thanks, for stopping by.

    xo, Do

  • Hello Do. I’ve been restoring park benches for almost a year now. It is Absolutely worth doing. I do almost the same exact thing that you do with them. If it has a cast iron back piece with a pattern I like to paint them according to their likeness of what it might look like in real life. How can I post a picture of some of the ones I’ve done so you can see what I do with them. Thank you

  • Thank you, Joyce! I appreciate you. 🙂 Do

  • How many bottles of the VooDoo Stain did it take for the bench? I have a bench exactly like that that I would like to redo, and love the color of yours but need to make sure I order enough. Thanks for your help.

  • Hi Sandy,
    Because the stain is water-base it tends to absorb quickly into the dry wood. I’m pretty sure one bottle should be fine if the bench has slats. I don’t think I even used the whole bottle. You can use a spray mist bottle with water to dampen the wood first. That should help the application. Hope it turns out well. 🙂 xo

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