Cooler Painting Tutorial

Monday, October 23, 2017

Happy Monday everybody! I wanted to start the week off with a fun craft post! A really popular thing to do in college now, is to paint coolers as gifts for people. I have done 3 so far, and while they are by no means perfect, I have learned how to do them pretty quick and easy and want to share with you all the details!

  • Paint-I usually buy mine at Walmart, or if I am buying them at a craft store I print coupons so that I save money (paint can add up!)
  • Paint Pens-These are so expensive, so i usually only buy a few in colors that I know I'll be using a ton. For the cooler featured, I bought black and white
  • White Paint Primer
  • Paint Brushes-I usually buy the cheap variety pack at Walmart
  • Tracing Paper or Sharpies
  • Sand Paper or Electric Sander
  • Modge Podge or another preferred sealant 

First, plan what you want for each side. With my first cooler, I only knew what I wanted on one side and just started painting. I ended up being unhappy with the finished product

Sand the cooler! It is so tempting to skip this step, however sanding the cooler allows it to absorb the paint better. I prefer using an electric sander because it saves SO much time.

After sanding the cooler, wipe it down with a damp cloth, then let it air dry. For the primer, I usually buy a white paint primer spray paint that is made for outdoor furniture. Two to three coats is best. It usually takes a bottle and a half of the primer. The primer should have instructions on it, but typically further away is better, and you want thin, even coats.

This is where the tracing paper or sharpies come in. If you are not comfortable free handing your chosen designs, these are a life saver. Print out your design (TIP: sometimes the design needs to span across multiple sheets of paper to fit your cooler correctly).

If you are using tracing paper, tape the tracing paper to your cooler, and then the design on top. Then, all you have to do is start tracing away!

If you are using a sharpie, tape the design onto the cooler and trace it with the sharpie. With this method, the ink bleeds through leaving the design on the cooler.

PAINT! Try to let each coat completely dry before you start on your next coat, or it can come out sloppy.

I love to use Modge Podge to seal my coolers. I have heard there are a lot of better ones out there, but it has always worked great for me. I like about 5 coats.

Annnnddd you are done! This is such a fun project either for you or someone else. If you are having trouble figuring out what to paint, look at Pinterest or Facebook has lots of cooler painting groups.

1 comment:

  1. I would never have thought to paint a cooler, but this looks so cool. I can't believe there are actually cooler painting groups too. That is pretty awesome!


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