Bring the Beach to Your Yard

Bring colorful, graphic detail to unpainted furniture by painting simple nautical patterns in blue and white. 

Step 1


Age the Wood Bench

Use a belt sander to give an aged look to the edges of the bench. Sand until an uneven, rustic look starts to take shape. Moving back and forth in a slow, controlled manner, add divots and dips to the surface of the bench with orbital sander held at a 45-degree angle.

Step 2


Paint the Base Color

Lighten the surface of the bench with one even coat of flat white paint applied with a mini roller or a paintbrush.

Step 3


Measure and Lay Out Patterns

Search the Internet for International Maritime signal flags. After you pick your flag patterns, use a tape measure and a pencil to mark the pattern on the backrest or seat.

Step 4


Apply Painter’s Tape

Protect the surface of the work area with a drop cloth. Use painter’s tape to mark the flags' patterns directly to the surface of bench.

Step 5


Add Shapes With Paint

Use a paintbrush or mini roller to apply paint along the taped-off areas of the bench’s backrest or seat. Since the final look is meant to appear antiqued, only one coat of paint is necessary for this application.

Step 6


Distress Paint

Use a sanding block to distress the painted nautical flags. When the proper amount of distressing is complete, seal the surface of the wood using sealer and mini roller.

Step 7


Coastal Bench

Nautical flags, or International Maritime signal flags, represent certain letters of the alphabet for coded communication at sea. See if you can spell out a secret message.