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Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Curb Appeal

Yesterday was an impromptu project day.  The weather was setting up to be perfect for painting outdoors.  Of course it wasn't the watercolor painting day that I wished it was, but I had house painting to do. 

Earlier this week I had a little outdoor painting to do for a small coop project. The coop needed a screen door.  The weather was NOT cooperating for that project at all.  It needed done ASAP as 100° weather was fast approaching.  Building the door was no problem, but painting it in dew points that were hovering around 72° was darn near impossible!  It was taking over 5 hours for a coat of paint to dry.

Fast forward to yesterday.  The dew point was an amazing 55° with a light breeze. So even though the temps would creep up to 85°, this was too good of a day to pass up for an outdoor painting project.  The victim?  My front door. !

It is SO boring!  Tan, sand, mud, dusty gravel road, taupe, mushroom, call it what you will, but combined with the same color brick, the same color siding, the same color landscape stones, in the winter- the same color lawn, a brown roof, and tan venting.... the door just blended in and disappeared!  What was the designer thinking?  I know common, bland, easy to market to a mass of clientele.  BORING!

Colorless, soulless, and blah doesn't fly here.  I spent months playing with swatches.  All I knew was that I wanted BLUE.  But it had to be the RIGHT blue.  Too dark, and in its cove, it would look black.  Too light, and you deal with the light messing with the sub colors in the pigments.  It would look pinkish, or yellowish, sometimes green.  So it had to be bright without been odd.  Plus it had to work with the brick and landscaping.

On one of my weekly wanderings through the big box hardware, they were restocking some paint chips.  I took a chance and picked up a few.  BINGO! Valspar's Homecoming Blue!  It is definitely BRIGHT.  It is the color of the blue field on a nylon US Flag.  It's really a purple that leans far into the blues. 

First I had to clean the door.  A simple wipe down with a strong ammonia cleaner to remove any dirt, grease, and the ever present, fly poop.  I removed any loose areas of paint on the wood trim, and lightly sanded it.

Another quick wipe down to remove any loose dust and I was ready to prime.  I prefer Kilz brand primer/sealer, Kilz2 especially, as it is water based.  I taped off the windows with tape and applied two coats of primer, allowing an hour between coats.  I also made sure that all brush strokes followed the faux wood grain pattern on the door.

I've got to admit, even the white primer looked better than the original brown color.  Nothing white here stays clean for more than a day, and while it looked nice, it still lacked the sparkle of life.

Now for the moment of truth.  That first brush full of color is always an eye opener.  Shockingly bright, and I loved it!  Remember paint gets darker as it dries.  The first coat was exceptionally bright as it was sitting on a white primer base.  (Primer can be tinted to a dark base at the hardware store if you ask.  The day I was there, the trainee didn't know how to do it.)

This was going to take more than one coat.

After three full coats of paint.  I was done.  It looks Fabulous! Now it is the much needed, much deserved, focal point for the house!

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