Painting the Day Away

Saturday was something like the third longest day of the year and I decided to utilize every minute of it, starting with catching the sunrise from the front porch.


The porch, by the way, is in that awesome phase of house projects where things get worse before they get better. You know, the part where the neighbors start shaking their head at you a lot.


But, before I tackle all the priming and painting on the front of the house (next weekend’s project) I decided to finish up the back.

There was a ton of peeling paint on this section of the house, and– following strict instructions from John, the paint guru at Color Concepts in Toledo– I pressure washed the back of the house last weekend let it dry before giving it a good scraping. The water gets under the paint and lifts it up as it dries, so if you scrape before pressure washing, you’re just going to have to do it again after.


I’m a one-woman show around here so I’m all about efficiency, and clearly that trick worked.

Instead of doing that thing where I buy 17 different samples of paint in two days and start pulling my hair out trying to pick out a new house color, I just had a paint chip colormatched to an exterior paint-and-primer combo and Lowe’s, and got to paintin’…


At first it drove me nuts to be spending time and energy on things I would be replacing sooner rather than later– and this siding, all three different types of it, definitely needs to be replaced in the next couple of years– but it turns out it’s rather freeing as far as decision-making goes. My eye hasn’t started twitching over color swatches even once in the last six weeks.

And, while I haven’t taken the pins out of my appraiser-shaped voodoo doll yet, I’m actually kind of glad I’m being forced to do these projects in the next couple of months because the house is going to look way better in the interim, before I circle back and do it the right way.

Like the back deck, for example, which used to look like this…


Then this…


And, finally, after I finished her off with a semi-transparent stain on the decking, this…


Now, I will say that if I’d gone the 347 stain sample route for the decking I may have gone with a more gray-brown, which is something I’ll keep in mind when I rebuild the deck next summer. As it stands though? Remarkable improvement over what I started with.

In the meantime, that section of siding is the one thing I didn’t get done this weekend, so you’ll have to wait for the big reveal of the new back entry early next week.

There was something like 9 hours of painting on Saturday, which doesn’t even begin to encompass what I tackled during the rest of the weekend, but it was enough for me bookend the day with another beautiful skyline.


I believe I may have found the perfect spot for ending a painting day.

14 Responses

  1. Score! LARGE! Question – in the photos of the rear of the kitchen, at the 2nd story level, there appears to be some mismatched brick and missing fascia, like thereusetawasachimbley there. For real?

  2. Any day you can start out by watching the sunrise and finish by watching the sunset, especially with a view like that, is a good day.

  3. I am still thinking you need not fret over the final color and just paint it to match the brick red of the rest of the house. You could probably even take an old brick in a color-match it.

    1. Well, the brick is a bit of an orangy color, but I have three barns pretty close to the house that are all barn-red. I think they look good on their own, but that color would definitely not match the brick if it were on the addition and would actually bother me to have a different shade of red on the house than on the rest of the buildings (and I’m definitely not taking on painting those). So red is probably out, but neon green isn’t! Just kidding. I don’t mind the gray, actually, but I may eventually go with a different shade.

      1. One of the prettiest colors I’ve seen with red brick is turquoise. But that house had the brick & siding evenly spread around the house – turquoise might be a bit overwhelming in the large expanses of your addition.

        How about a gray-green or something similar to the sage you used on Memorial House?

  4. Yes, I second the dark gray and the excellent advice by John at Color Concepts/Benjamin Moore. If anyone lives near Toledo, his store is at Central and McCord.

  5. Kit, how is the “paint-and-primer combo” holding up 3 years later? I’m needing to paint my house this summer 🙁

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I'm not interested in a mediocre life. I'm here to kick ass or die.