Category: How To’s & Quick Tips

DIY Concrete Tabletop

This DIY table comes together with a custom wood base and concrete top.

Sometimes we see a project that truly bowls us over. This concrete tabletop from Pete at D.I.Y. Projects with Pete is one of those projects. Using Ana White’s plans for his table base, Pete then topped his creation with a concrete top made with melamine board forms. We think the end result is as stunning as it is sturdy. Take a look at his tutorial for the details.

DIY Concrete Table Finished

- orbital sander
- drill
- circular saw
- table saw
- small shovel
- bolt cutters
- concrete trowel
- flathead screwdriver or chisel
- sanding block with 100 grit sandpaper ( or a diamond pad)
- 1–2 bags of concrete (depending on size of table)
- Portland cement
- wire mesh (or Diamond Mesh)
- melamine wood
- rubber gloves
- painter’s tape
- 100% silicone caulk
- plastic cups to mix cement paste
- tub to mix concrete
- (1) 5/8″ drywall screws
- 120 and 220 grit sandpaper for orbital sander

Concrete for DIY Concrete Table
 Melamine for DIY Concrete Table


Determine the size of table you’d like to make. The buffet table I made is 17″wide by 52″ long by 1.5″ thick. Here is a diagram showing how I made the mold.

Step 1 DIY Concrete Table


Cut the bottom of the mold out of melamine using a circular saw. This piece should be the exact width and length you’d like the concrete table to be.


Cut the strips that will border the bottom piece. If you want a 1.5″ thick concrete slab, add 3/4″ to the strips so they are 2.25″ tall. This accommodates for the bottom of the mold.

Making DIY Concrete Table


Assemble the sides of the mold. Attach using 1 5/8 inch black drywall screws about every 8-12 inches. Drill a pilot hole to help it go in easier. Make sure to drill in from the side as evenly as possible.

Assemble DIY Concrete Table


Complete the mold. Once assembled, the mold will look like the photo below. You will now have a structure to pour in your concrete. Note: The actual top of your concrete table will be very smooth because it will cure against the smooth and flat melamine surfaces. The part that you screed and trowel later on will actually be the bottom side. You will flip the mold once the project has cured.

Step 5 DIY Concrete Table


Caulk the creases in your mold. In my video, I use a squeeze tube of 100% silicon caulk. You can also use a caulk gun. Then run a caulk tool to smooth it out. You can also use painter’s tape to get an even caulk line as pictured below.

Caulking DIY Concrete Table


Once caulked, use your finger to smooth out the bead. Have paper towels around to clean off your hands when finished! As soon as you are finished, pull the tape off while the caulk is still wet. Use a paper towel to remove any caulk that accidentally gets on other parts of the mold. Let cure for a few hours.

Smoothing Caulk on DIY Concrete Table


Cut re-enforcement. Once the caulk has cured, go ahead and cut the re-enforcement to size using a bolt cutter. If your table is 52″ long by 17″ in width, cut the metal wiring to about 50″ by 15″. It will leave about an inch of play on each side. Then use rubbing alcohol and a paper towel to thoroughly clean the mold, making sure all sawdust and particles are out of the mold.

Wire Re-enforcement for DIY Concrete Table


It’s time to mix up the concrete. Follow the directions on the bag to see how much water they recommend adding. I like to pour some water into the tub prior to the concrete to minimize dust. Wear a dust mask for this process because the particles are not good to breathe. Mix 1 or 2 bags of concrete at a time. To stir up the concrete use a small shovel or garden hoe. I like to mix it to a peanut butter consistency. If it is too dry add a little more water at a time. If too much is added, put in a little more concrete mix.

*Now is the time to add liquid or powder coloring to the mix if you’d like. Another way to add color is by using concrete acid stain after the project has cured.

Pouring DIY Concrete Counter


Take a handful of concrete (wearing your rubber gloves of course), and start packing the concrete into the mold. *Don’t forget to make sure your work table is as level as possible prior to packing the concrete.

Packing Concrete for DIY Concrete Table


Once the mold is filled up a little more than half way you’ll want to add the re-enforcement. Simply put the re-enforcement in place and then finish packing the rest of the mold with concrete.

Packing Mold for DIY Concrete Table


Fill the mold with concrete until it is full. Take an old 2×4 or straight piece of wood and screed off the excess to level out the concrete. Move the 2×4 in a sawing motion. Continue back and forth across the entire mold (multiple times) and fill in any low spots with extra concrete. Check that your work table is still level. You can always shim if needed. A level work table will make sure your concrete table is an even thickness throughout.

Screeding DIY Concrete Table Counter


Once you’ve finished leveling out the concrete lift your work table slightly up and down to vibrate the concrete. Vibrating the concrete will help minimize the number of air bubbles in your finished piece. This is a very important step. Another way to help vibrate the piece is to hit the bottom side of the table (underneath your piece) with a rubber mallet or hammer. Then use the hammer (or an orbital sander ) to vibrate the air bubbles out from the sides (tap the sides with the hammer). Finally, use a basic concrete trowel to smooth the concrete. The part you trowel will actually be the bottom of the concrete tabletop. You want the bottom side to be flat so it rests on your table base.

Smooth DIY Concrete Table with Trowel


Now it’s time to sit back and relax. Let the concrete piece cure for a good 3 to 4 days before removing it from the mold. Cheers!


Remove all the drywall screws. Next, take a chisel and slowly pry the wood side away from the concrete. Make sure not to let the chisel (or flathead screwdriver ) touch the concrete.

Remove DIY Concrete Table from Mold





Use a sanding block to soften the edges. Make sure to work from the corners and not into them. In the photo below, you’d start the sanding block at the corner and move to the left. This prevents blowing out the corner. Run the block lightly around all bottom edges. (It will only take a couple minutes.)

Sanding DIY Concrete Table


Slowly flip the concrete. It helps to have two people. I like to take a few shop rags or foam to put under the concrete so when it is flipped vertically there is something for it to rest softly on. Continue flipping the piece and rest it on a few spare boards. Resting it on boards that are evenly spaced will allow the piece to dry thoroughly.

Flipping DIY Concrete Table

Remove top of the mold. Admire it!


Use an orbital sander to smooth the piece. You will expose a few more bug holes but that is okay. Run the sander on the sides and corners as well. The top edges will be pretty rough. You’ll fill in the rough area with portland cement after this process.


Mix portland cement (not normal concrete mix) with water until it is a toothpaste consistency. You could mix the cement with a concrete fortifier to help it bond as well, but is not necessary. Rub the paste into the bugholes using a circular motion. Fill any other areas with the paste as needed. To fill the rough edges in put some paste in the bridge between your thumb and index finger. Slide along the edge as shown below. After filling the holes use a plastic putty spatula to remove excess paste. Let sit for 1 to 2 hours and then do a final sanding.


Use 120 and the 220 grit sandpaper to remove extra paste and to give the table top a smooth finish. Round over the edges as well.

Sanding DIY Concrete Table


Use a clean rag and get any remaining dust off the concrete. Next, find a new rag and use it to apply a stone or concrete sealer. These can be found at a local hardware store. Read the instructions to find out the best way to apply the sealer. Once the sealer drys I like to wax the piece. It adds an extra layer of protection and shines the piece up a bit. The paste wax I use is Johnson’s Paste Wax and can be found in the wood stain section at the hardware store.

Apply the wax in a circular motion. Then buff it with a clean microfiber rag or terry cloth. It will be smooth and shiny!

Waxing DIY Concrete Table


Set the concrete piece onto your base. If needed, feel free to run a thick bead of 100% silicon caulk around the top of base so the concrete piece doesn’t shift. I’d recommend using caulk on a coffee table because your feet pushing against it will shift the concrete. On a buffet table you could go with or without.

Finished Sanding DIY Concrete Table

Finished DIY Concrete Table


Thanks, Pete from D.I.Y Pete! You can check out his video tutorial here and check out his site for even more concrete projects.

DIY Mason Jar Speaker Set

DIYing your own industrial fab speakers is easier than you'd think. Designer Sarah Pease shares how in this incredible DIY mason jar transformation.

Thumbs Up

The humble mason jar can hold nearly anything—including tech gadgets! Designer Sarah Pease converted these canning jars into a set of iPhone speakers using David Mellis’ open-source Fab Speakers design files. The results are incredibly stylish.

DIY Mason Jar Speaker Set - after

Photo: Sarah Pease

- (2) 66 mm 0.5W speakers
- TPA701D amplifier
- audio cable (3.5 mm stereo plug to wires)
- battery holder
- switch (SPDT, 0.1″ pitch)
- capacitor (2.2 uF, 1206)
- capacitator (0.47 uF, 1206)
- capacitator (1 uF, 1206)
- resistor (49.9K, 1206)
- resistor (10K, 1206)
- AAA batteries
- (2) mason jars
- 2-part canning lids
- diamond drill bit
- soldering iron
- wire strippers
- sandpaper
- hammer
- spindle sander (optional)
- cork (optional)

DIY Mason Jar Speaker Set - Inside

Photo: Sarah Pease

Using David Mellis’ documentation for Fab Speakers, solder together the electrical components using a soldering iron, making sure the speakers will fit into your jar—the 66 mm speakers should fit a small mason jar.

Alternative: Instead of creating your own, you can hack apart existing speakers. These days, you can usually find cheap portable ones that will work perfectly.

Now, drill your holes into the bottoms of your mason jars—a diamond drill bit will do the job. Take care and be sure to wear protective eye wear before you start drilling. Make sure the glass is wet while you’re drilling the holes—one hole in the bottom of each jar.

Note: This is the trickiest part of the assembly.

DIY Mason Jar Speakers - Detail

Photo: Sarah Pease

Once the holes are all set, it’s just a matter of putting the electronic components inside the jars. The speakers will fit perfectly inside—hold them in place using the metal bands of the two part mason lids. I opted to use batteries so the only cords coming out of the jars are the 3.5mm audio cable that connects to my iPhone and the wire that connects each speaker to the circuit board.

The battery pack is soldered directly to the circuit board, which fits in one of the jars.

If you want to make the speaker stand, you’ll need some extra materials. I made the little cork stands by drawing the shape I wanted onto the cork and using a spindle sander to shape it. And voila! Your very own DIY mason jar speakers.

DIY Mason Jar Speaker Set - Glass Vignette

Photo: Sarah Pease

Thanks, Sarah Pease!

DIY Outdoor Chandelier

Upcycled canning supplies get a new and improved look in this DIY mason jar chandelier project.

Thumbs Up 2

Mason Jar Chandelier DIY


I just love candles in mason jars. A few summers ago I bought a package of half-pint jars and some light wire and made wonderful little candleholders to hang among the trees; however, when I went to go set them out I got really nervous that I might set my trees—and from there my house, and from there the entire desert—on fire. So I put them away. It has recently occurred to me that replacing the tea lights with LED lights would solve that problem (note to self).

We’ve been having dinner outside every night for the last few weeks and I’ve been feeling like we need a little boost in the lighting. I’ve seen some cool candle chandeliers made out of mason jars and canning racks in articles about wedding style, so on Saturday Mr. Little Mama and I made two ourselves! Easy peasy!

Mason Jar Chandelier DIY - Materials


- (8) 4-foot lengths of chain
- “8″ hooks (like S hooks, but fully closed)
- 2 eye hooks
- 1 canning rack
- Box of pint-size mason jars
- Light steel wire
- Pliers
- Wire cutter
- Drill

Mason Jar Chandelier DIY - Assembly


First we took the handles off the canning rack. Place mason jars into the rack; it will hold six jars around the side and one in the center.

We looped the wire around each exterior jar and twisted it onto the rack just to make sure each jar was at least slightly secure. To hold the center jar on we looped the wire around the lip and then secured it across to each side; the wire is fine and inconspicuous so you really don’t even notice it.

Mr. Little Mama supplied the tools to hang the fixture: a couple of pliers and a wire cutter. He drilled holes into the patio roof to secure the eye hooks, then manhandled the chain into place. By opening the last loop of the chain and re-closing it around the rack in four places where the bottom frames attach to the side frames our hanging mechanism was secured. We then opened an 8-hook, attached the free end of all four chains to one loop, and hung the apparatus from the eye hook with the other.

Mason Jar Chandelier DIY - Complete


We made two of these babies in less than 90 minutes (including a break to wash the dogs after Little decided to sprinkle them with dirt) with under $100 in supplies. If I had jars and a canning rack lying around the house, or sourced them from Goodwill or something, they would have been cheaper, but for me time is money so store-bought it was. The extra pint jars came in handy for the batch of Peep-infused vodka I made for Easter.

I am using LED tea lights because I am still terrified of burning down the house. A girl can’t be too careful!

Thanks, This Little Mama!

DIY Blue Mason Jar Chandelier

With some blue mason jars and some creative thinking, this uninspired lighting fixture was transformed into a DIY chandelier.

Thumbs Up Banner

I can’t tell you how excited I am to share this project with you. I’m so in love with blue mason jars. I’ve been wanting to make some sort of mason jar light fixture for a while now but couldn’t decide what to make. I took a look at the hideous chandelier in my dining room and knew I could transform it into something amazing. Because blue mason jars make everything amazing. So I made my very own mason jar chandelier.

Blue Mason Jar Chandelier - Complete


Here is my chandelier before.

Blue Mason Jar Chandelier - Before


UGH. If that doesn’t scream builder grade I don’t know what does. IT HAD TO GO. Three years of looking at this thing was enough for me.

- Old chandelier for repurposing
- Blue mason jars (with lids)
- Metal snips
- Gorilla Glue

First we unwired it and took it down. Actually, first we turned off the breaker. THEN we unwired it and took it down. With a few unscrews we were able to remove the glass part and we were left with the basic chandelier. After cleaning the dust off, it looked great. You’ll notice it is pretty filthy in the picture above.

To fit the mason jars over the lights, we used the “candle holders” on the chandelier as a guide and drilled holes in the lids.  Then we used metal snips to cut the hole bigger so it would fit over the “candle holder” on the chandelier. We used Gorilla Glue to attach the lids to the rings. Just a few small dots of this stuff will be plenty.

Before placing the lids onto the chandelier, we rewired the chandelier and hung it back up. To attach the lids, I slid the candle holder back into place and the lid rested on the base of the chandelier. I then screwed the lightbulbs in and screwed the jars onto the lids. I didn’t use any glue to attach the lids to the light fixture base and it seems to be holding ok. I didn’t want to use any glue since I will need to put the original chandelier back together when we move but if your fixture is going to be permanent, then go ahead and use some glue. I’m always trying to make my projects renter friendly.

Blue Mason Jar Chandelier - Steps


I so love my new chandelier!

Blue Mason Jar Chandelier - Detail Installed


Thanks, Here Comes the Sun!

DIY Mason Jar Windchime

If you like the idea of cutting glass, you'll love this DIY mason jar windchime that reinvents a summer canning staple into a charming rustic accent.

Thumbs Up 2 Banner

It was only a matter of time before I tried out my bottle cutter on a mason jar. Here’s how I pulled off this mason-jar-turned-wind-chimes upcycle, just in time for warm weather outdoor decor.

Mason Jar Wind Chimes - complete


This project is a great stash buster for those beads and charms you’ve been stockpiling. There will be some cutting and drilling of glass, but don’t fear, you can do this!

Mason Jar Wind Chime - Detail Outdoors


- Mason jar with lid
- 2 eye screws
- Piece of scrap wood about 1/2 inch thick and smaller than lid
- Fishing line or other clear string
- Scissors
- Beads, chain, charms and connectors of your choice
- Bottle cutter
- Butane micro torch or candle and lighter
- Dremel or other rotary tool
- Measuring tape
- Shallow container with cold water for drilling your jar (this will make sense later)
- Bucket of cold water deep enough to submerge jar
- Protective mask and goggles
- E6000 Glue adhesive
- Diamond bits for glass; I used a bit from this set
- Permanent marker
- Medium-grit sand paper
- Glass beads or wine bottle rings

Mason Jar Wind Chime - Cutting


Place the mason jar on the cutter.

Mason Jar Wind Chime - Cutting Detail


Mark the jar so you know when you have made a complete rotation.

Mason Jar Wind Chime - Cutting Detail 2


Once the score line is made, it is time to apply heat and cold to it. I like to do this with a butane micro torch while rotating the bottle on the cutter jig. I have moved the blade out of the way and am just using the cutter jig to hold the bottle and give me a way to rotate it easily with one hand while holding the torch with the other.

If you are using a torch, one minute is plenty of time for applying heat. Sometimes this is enough to break the score line. If not, submerge jar into cold water, covering score line. That is all it took for me on this mason jar. If yours doesn’t separate, repeat the heat and cold until it does.

Mason Jar Wind Chime - Cut Complete


This is what my break looked like. Not bad! Now it is time to sand and smooth the edges.

Mason Jar Wind Chime - Assembly


Sand lightly with medium grit paper. Get the inner and outer edges of the break. This is pretty quick.

You will notice after a minute or two of sanding that the edge is smooth to the touch and won’t cut you.

Mason Jar Wind Chime - Marking


I measured the diameter of my jar and it was 12 inches. I marked every 3 inches for drilling a hole. This gave me 4 holes evenly spaced around the jar for stringing beads and charms.

Mason Jar Wind Chime- Hole


Before drilling, put on eye gear and mask!

Place jar in shallow container of cold water. I use a square baking tin.

To begin drilling, come in at an angle to start an indentation.

Mason Jar Wind Chime - Hole 2


Once the indentation is started, move drill to 90°. Every 30 seconds or so, stop drilling and rotate jar so that hole gets rinsed out and glass where your were drilling gets cooled. This prevents the glass from breaking due to high heat. Continue until you have drilled all the way through.

Do this at each mark around the jar.

Use fishing line or beading string to string various beads, charms, found objects, and chain to your liking in each hole.

Mason Jar Wind Chime - Eye Hook


I wanted to use the old lid that was on this jar in the design, so I needed to have a way to hang the chimes by it. I used a hammer and small nail to make a hold in the top center.

Mason Jar Wind Chime - Eye Hook 2


Next I screwed in the eye screw as pictured.

Mason Jar Wind Chimes - Fishing Line


I drilled into the wooden disk and screwed the remaining eye pin to the other side as shown. I later added E6000 to the wooden disk on the side that contacts the jar lid for added strength. It gets pretty gusty around here in the spring!

I cut a length of fishing line to the eye screw and tied the other end to a wine bottle ring, tied another ring to that one, and another ring to that one for a total of 3 hanging down from the middle of the jar.

Mason Jar Wind Chime - AFter


To finish, put the lid on the jar and add chain to the eye screw on top for hanging. Hang and enjoy!

Thanks, Saved by Love Creations!

DIY Mason Jar Solar Lamp

Country style meets eco-smarts in this spectacularly simple DIY mason jar solar lantern.

Thumbs Up

When the words mason jar and solar lamp come together in the same sentence, I don’t care who you are—you get excited. Because this jar is awesome. And adorable. And did I mention you’re saving the planet too? So get excited, yo.

Mason Jar Solar Lamp - Banner

This is a great project for people with minimal crafty skills, (like me). Once you wrap wire around it and hang it in your yard, you don’t have to think about it ever again. Evening light + powered by the sun = awesome.

Mason Jar Solar Lamp - Complete


Let’s get to it, shall we?

- Quart size wide-mouth mason jar
- 16-gauge baling wire
- Solar-powered mason lid

Mason Jar Solar Lamp - Lid


Cut a piece of wire to 12.5 inches. Wrap around the lip of the mason jar and loop together— but leave it loose.

Mason Jar Solar Lamp - Wire


Cut another piece of wire to 14 inches and loop the ends around the first wire.

Mason Jar Solar Lamp - Wire 2


After you’ve tightened both sides of your handle, you can go back and tighten the front loops on the first ring of wire.

Mason Jar Solar Lamp - Wire 3


Now all you need to do is put a battery in your LED solar light lid and screw that puppy on!

I have found that the solar lights need at least 6 hours of full sun to light up well at night. So as long as you hang them in a place where they can get recharged for half of the day, you’ll always have light in the evenings! After your initial investment in the supplies, it really is the gift that keeps giving. I’m thinking of placing these all around my outside table—can’t you just picture the amazing summer evenings with these to light our conversations with family and friends?

Mason Jar Solar Lamp - Night Detail


Thanks, Weed ‘Em And Reap!

How To: Remove Sticker Residue

The next time your new purchase, be it glassware, a toy, or electronics, is marred by a stubborn sticker, try one of these household remedies for getting the glue off.

How to Remove Sticker Residue


These days, each and every time you buy something new, the product seems to come with a sticker on it. Usually, that sticker comes off easily enough, but the residue it leaves behind can be a real pain to remove. If you’re tired of wasting time trying to clean bits of glue off your recent purchases, try one of the following tricks. Each involves a common household staple you probably already have in your kitchen, and all are bound to be more effective than your fingernail alone.

Detail - Stickers


Cooking Oil
Reach for the cooking oil next time you want to remove sticker residue. Dab any oil—olive, canola, sunflower, or another type—onto a paper towel, then lay that towel over the gunk that refuses to budge. Wait a few minutes while the oil works to dissolve the stubborn glue. Finally, remove the towel and rub away the sticker residue with your fingers or a plastic scraper (it should come off rather easily). A degree of caution is necessary with this method, because many oils can stain absorbent materials. Concerned? Test a drop of your chosen oil on an inconspicuous part of the object. Proceed only if the oil leaves no trace.

Rubbing Alcohol
Rubbing alcohol is another option for removing sticker residue. (In a pinch, you could even use vodka!) The process is no different from the one you’d follow if you were using cooking oil. Simply dampen a paper towel with the alcohol, lay that towel over the sticky area, then wait a few minutes while the fluid dissolves the glue. Finish by rubbing away the remaining residue with your fingers or a plastic scraper.

When diluted with water, a mild acid like vinegar works well to remove sticker residue. Soak a dishrag in the solution, then wrap the cloth around the object, leaving the vinegar to perform its magic for a few minutes. Remove the cloth, and you should find that the glue has become considerably less sticky.

Some gurus of gunk attest that above all other methods applying mayonnaise ranks as the ultimate way to remove sticker residue. Given that mayonnaise combines two of the ingredients mentioned elsewhere in this discussion (oil and vinegar), it doesn’t seem so far-fetched that mayonnaise would prove effective. Its use, however, should be limited to nonporous surfaces, as it’s liable to stain materials that are absorbent.

Weekend Projects: 5 Beautifully Basic DIY Bookends

Display your favorite books—and your individuality—with a pair of custom-made bookends. Here are five designs you can make in a weekend.

If you have a few especially beloved books in your collection, why not use a pair of DIY bookends to set them apart as a reminder to yourself and a message to your guests? Though making DIY bookends entails some time and effort, the immensely rewarding results can last for years. Scroll down now to see five of our favorite bookends made by creative and stylish do-it-yourselfers. Then either mimic their ideas or let their designs inspire your own signature set.



DIY Bookends - Dioramas


You can stock up on hiking guides and trail maps, or you can invite nature onto your shelf another way: with wilderness-themed DIY bookends. In your local craft store, there’s a section devoted to the supplies needed to put together this diorama. Sand and stain a couple of wood blocks, then glue on the tiny scene of your choice.



DIY Bookends - Toys


Here’s a way to make some “ferociously” fun DIY bookends for a kid’s room. For each bookend, glue and nail two pieces of wood at right angles, forming an L-shaped base. Prime and spray-paint the two wood bases as well as your chosen figurines. Finally, hot-glue the toys to the painted wood. Voilà: one-of-a-kind decor!



DIY Bookends - Mason Jars


Do the wonders of spray paint ever cease? Choose a can of paint that features a bold, eye-catching color you love, and use it to transform a couple of canning jars into DIY bookends. (If you don’t have glass jars in the pantry, they can be purchased for a song). Once the paint has dried, fill the jars with pebbles or sand for added weight.



DIY Bookends - Vinyl Records


For years you’ve held on to a crate full of vinyl records. Choose two, remove them from their sleeves, and then—are you ready for this?—you can actually shape them into retro chic DIY bookends! Run the records under hot water until they’re pliable, then bend them into right angles. Just be careful not to ruin the labels!



DIY Bookends - Brick


For DIY bookends like these, you need only a couple of bricks, painter’s tape, and your choice of spray-paint colors. Use the tape to mark off a pleasing geometric design, then spray on a combination of contrasting or complementary colors. There may be no easier—or cheaper—way to control the chaos on your shelves.

How To: Remove Paint from Concrete

Removing paint from concrete is a time-consuming endeavor, but a determined DIYer is certainly up to the task. Here's how to get it done right.

How to Remove Paint from Concrete


Concrete is porous, which means that it readily absorbs liquids like paint. With this ease of penetration, paint can seep millimeters deep into a concrete surface. As a result, it can be a challenge to remove paint from concrete, but it can certainly be done. How long will it take? That depends on the size of the area you’re dealing with. But it’s safe to expect that you won’t be knocking this out before lunch. Think of removing paint from concrete as an ongoing process, not as an item for your weekend to-do list.

- Broom (or clean cotton rag)
- Trisodium phosphate (TSP)
- Long-handled brush
- Putty knife
- Chemical paint stripper
- Protective gear
- Pressure washer
- Clay powder or kitty litter (optional)

When you set out to remove paint from concrete, the first thing to do is clean the surface of the concrete thoroughly. Prepare a solution of soap and water, or better yet, diluted trisodium phosphate (TSP)—in which case, be sure to wear gloves. Meanwhile, sweep or wipe off the concrete, removing as much loose dust, dirt, and debris as possible. Now proceed to work the soapy water or TSP into the concrete by means of a long-handled brush. Rinse the area afterward, allowing one to three hours for the surface to dry.

How to Remove Paint from Concrete - Detail Concrete


If some of the paint has already begun to chip or peel, scrape it away with a putty knife. Having done so, get ready to apply the chemical paint stripper. You need to use one designed for the type of paint you’re trying to remove. In other words, use oil-based paint stripper on a surface coated by oil-based paint. Not sure which type of paint is on the concrete? If you’re uncertain, your best bet is to opt for an oil-based paint stripper.

Once you’ve covered the concrete with a generous layer of paint stripper, let it sit for six to eight hours. During that time, a chemical reaction will take place, the magical result of which is the removal of paint. Remember that if you’re working with paint stripper, it’s imperative that you wear the appropriate protective gear: a respirator (or at minimum, a dust mask), long sleeves, and good pair of rubber gloves.

For this stage of the job, so long as you’re working on a compact concrete patch, you can probably get by with a wire scrub brush or a paint scraper. On a larger surface, to make things much more manageable, it’s recommended that you rent a pressure washer from your local home center (or borrow one from a neighbor).

Having set the pressure washer at 3,000 psi, go ahead and blast away the paint stripper residue. Soon enough, you will see whether or not it will be necessary to repeat Step 2. It’s not unreasonable to anticipate having to apply and then wash away multiple applications of paint stripper.

Paint Spills
What if you spill a gallon of paint on the garage floor, or accidentally leave a thick splatter of bright orange paint on the driveway? To clean it up, you would follow the same basic steps outlined above, with one important exception. Instead of applying a layer of paint stripper alone to the concrete, you would apply a paste made from the stripper and a superabsorbent material, such as finely ground clay powder or pulverized kitty litter.

Nonchemical Solutions
There are alternatives to using a paint stripper, but they’re all more labor-intensive. For instance, on a concrete surface of modest size, you can opt to use an orbital sander. Likewise, a floor buffer can get the job done on a larger scale. But perhaps the most effective nontoxic option is a soda blaster, a tool very much like a sandblaster, except that instead of sand, it shoots out sodium bicarbonate (baking soda). You can most likely rent one—and buy the baking soda in bulk—at your local home center. Because all of the above options create fine particles, a dust mask or respirator is a must if you’re working indoors.

DIY Plumbing Pipe Bed Frame

We love how That's My Letter, inspired by designs from popular retailers, created an industrial chic bed frame that's undeniably her own.

DIY Pipe Fitting Bed

We combined wood boards with galvanized steel pipes to make this twin bed. It’s a match made in heaven, with a different type of build requiring very little tools except your hands to screw the pipes together. Inspired by both the Pottery Barn Owen Bed and RH Baby’s Industrial Steel Pipe Bed, we married the two designs for this DIY version.

Knock Off Decor Bed Frame

steel pipe $466
lumber $54

- (2) – 1x8x8 pine boards
- (1) – 1x8x6 pine board
- (2) – 2x4x8 studs
- (8) – 1x3x8 furring strips
- 2” wood screws
- 1 ½” wood screws

Galvanized Steel:
- (2) – 1” pipe @ 75”l
- (4) – 1” pipe @ 18”l
- (5) – ¾” pipe @ 36”l
- (14) – 1” nipple @ 8”l
- (4) – 1” close nipple
- (14) – 1” threaded tee
- (4) – 1” 90 degree elbow
- (4) – 1” x 1 ¼” coupling (feet)
- (2) – 1” threaded coupling
- (10) – 1” x ¾” bushing
- (20) – 1” split ring pipe hanger, cut to length and threaded at hardware store

- measuring tape
- square
- pencil

- (5) – 1×8 @ 37 ¾”l (wood slats)
- (2) – 2×4 @ 74”l (platform supports)
- (16) – 1×3 furring @ 41 ¼”l (mattress supports)

DIY Pipe Bed Front View

- No glue was used on any pipes or pipe-to-wood connections.
- Hand tighten pipe connections until you are confident of pipe placement, this allows you to unscrew if necessary – that’s the beauty of working with pipe.

1. The most difficult portion will be connecting the siderails to the footboard and headboard since the pipe screws together in the same direction on both ends (if you’re screwing in one end essentially you are unscrewing the other end simultaneously). Follow the step by step instructions carefully.

DIY Pipe Bed Materials

2. Start with one footboard leg:

DIY Pipe Bed How To Steps

3. Then begin the other leg, foot portion only and connect the siderails.

DIY Pipe Bed How to Step 4

4. Do the same for the headboard except opposite, completed headboard leg attaches to siderail with footboard foot portion only leg.  Completed footboard leg attaches to siderail with headboard foot portion only.  This allows you to screw siderail completely into tees by swinging the foot portions around and around.

5. Then begin connecting the horizontal pipe support section using 1″ close nipple.

DIY Pipe Bed How to Step 5

6. Prepare the wood slats, I stained my boards using Minwax weathered oak.

Attach the split ring clamp hangers:

DIY Pipe Bed How to Step 7

7. Then place wood slat on footboard and screw in 1″ x 8″ nipple:

DIY Pipe Bed Footboard

8. Add next horizontal pipe and tee section:

DIY Pipe Bed How to Step 9

9. Screw clamp into position centering board between horizontal pipes:

DIY Pipe Bed How to Step 10

10. At the top screw two 18″ pieces together using 1″ coupling:

DIY Pipe Bed Headboard

11. Build the mattress support:

DIY Pipe Bed How to Step 12

12. Add mattress and bedding!

DIY Pipe Bed Finished

Thanks, That’s My Letter!