Step 1: Clean it up
My bench looked as if it had been sitting in a garage for years. I gave it a thorough cleaning with the highest stream setting on my hose and blasted it with water. Then I wiped it down and let it air-dry outside.
Step 2: Paint it
After the bench dried, I spray-painted it in a well-ventilated area. (If your piece has scratches, I recommend sanding it first and then spray-painting it with a primer.) I used two coats of red paint, allowing each layer to dry for about 15 minutes.
Next page: Steps 3 and 4: Cushioning and upholstering