Williams Residence

 Existing Wood Bar Countertop In Finished Basement Modified In Preparation For Decorative Cement Overlay
 Sample Board For Customer Containing Four Gray Options Of Decorative Cement Overlay

This is an existing wood, bar countertop in a finished basement.  The owner was interested in replacing it with a concrete countertop.  One of the great things about concrete veneers is that they can go over just about anything, including countertops.  So rather than rip out the existing countertop and replace it with a cast-in-place concrete slab, we offered to overlay it.  The photo above right shows that sample board we prepared for the customer.

 Wood Bar Countertop In Finished Basement After Surface Preparation For Decorative Cement Overlay
 Finished Basement Wood Bar Countertop After Cement Base Coat For Decorative Concrete Overlay

Because the edges of the countertop were slightly modified with 2 x 4's to extend the size of it, we had to do a lot of surface prep.  First, we filled in the seams with patching material and levelled the lefthand side of the countertop (photo above left), which was off by about 1/4", and then used another base layer of cement to level the entire surface (above right).

 Gray (Not Yet Sealed) Decorative Concrete Overlay of Wood Bar Countertop In Finished Basement
 Gray Decorative Concrete Overlay of Wood Bar Countertop In Finished Basement After Applying Clear Epoxy Sealer

Once the surface was level and smooth, we finished the countertop with a finish layer of cement.  The customer had decided on a darker shade of gray, after seeing the sample board above, and to achieve that tone we started with gray portland cement and added some black integral color.  The photo above left shows the cement shortly after troweling, and above right, shows the finished countertop after sealing.

 Gray Decorative Concrete Overlay of Wood Bar Countertop In Finished Basement After Applying Clear Epoxy Sealer And Matte Wax
 Gray Decorative Concrete Overlay of Wood Bar Countertop In Finished Basement After Clear Gloss Epoxy Sealer And Matte Wax

The customer wanted a non-gloss, matte finish, so after applying two coats of a water-based epoxy, we applied three coats of a matte wax from Johnson Diversey.  This helped greatly in dulling the reflection of the overhead lighting and allowing the true color of the concrete to shine through.  One of the unexpected benefits of the dark gray shade chosen by the customer was that it matched the brick foundation of the countertop perfectly.

 Wood Bar Countertop In Finished Basement Transformed Into Gray Concrete Countertop With Cement Overlay
 Wood Bar Countertop In Finished Basement Transformed Into Gray Concrete Countertop With Cement Overlay