Wednesday, November 2, 2011

A Porch Story

If any of you are as antsy as I am, it's kiiiiiilling me not to start with my favorite room in the house and show you all of the wonderful and magical things J has done.  But in my organized fashion, we are going to need just a smidge of patience because we'll get there...I promise.  

The original porch that came with the house was in fairly decent condition, all things considered.  I suppose I should probably mention that the house dates back to the late 1800s, early 1900s.  But our neighborhood society doesn't technically list anything as being established prior to 1900.  So this puts a little reference point with what we're working with here.

Due to J's fantastic photo taking skills yet again, we do not have a "before" shot to show you. (Although I suppose since I was around at this point, you could blame me too, but let's blame the dude that owns the place, huh?)  It wasn't a pretty porch so late last summer we decided to experiment with some wood paint.  It was an easy-ish fix, or so we thought.  

J consulted the guys at the paint store, some family elders and Google and we thought we had the best solution that wouldn't require building a new porch.  So he primed and painted and painted some more and we had a lovely dark brown porch....for all of two weeks.  The paint started chipping on the corners of the steps first and by winters end, it looked pretty sad.

And before y'all ask if we sanded, used pressure treated wood, stripped the original stuff off; the answer is: we did everything that the experts told us.  And J and his paint store buddies are still mystified.

So fast forward to this spring and J has had enough!  Off went all of the old wood and in went some nice, pretty, pressure treated cedar.  And it was so pretty:

And the thing I've learned about this pressure treated stuff is that you need to let it weather-ize a bit before you stain it.  So for three months we had a partially finished porch but the end result was worth it. 

I will mention, again, the age of the house lends itself to some quirks.  For instance, while the porch might look completely even, the boards actually narrow (get shorter) as you walk toward the back of the house.  This was something that would require tearing out the foundation of the porch to fix so J adapted and cut each board accordingly.

And once it was exposed to the elements for a bit (we had a LOT of thunderstorms this summer), J stained it:

And another shot here:

The stain is Benjamin Moore and is color matched to a sample of wood flooring that we had picked out for our new wood floors in the kitchen and living room.

And this is what the porch looks like today:

And that nice little lattice work there on the bottom?  J built himself storage space under the porch for all of the shovels and outdoorsy tools.  Clever.


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