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Sunday, December 4, 2016

We Bought A Barn

Yep, that's right.  I finally worked up the courage to sign on the dotted line and order our barn.  GULP.  It should be delivered and built sometime in January, as the weather permits. 

We went with a Cleary Building that is 30x40 feet with two 8 foot long overhang porches on each long side.  (Not included in the footprint measurement.)  This will provide additional shelter and watershed for the windows and stable doors.  We chose antique bronze for the entire building, no trim colors, and a deep rust red for the roof.  From the street, the steel will look like old, deep brown wood panels, and the roof, like a rusted tin roof.  The windows will be white, as that is the only color they come in and I haven't decided what color to paint the doors for the humans.

Now that the contract was signed we had to make haste and get the pad built up.  As you remember, the garden was the only close to flat bit of land we had on this property.  With that completely stripped out, the pad builder could more easily see the slope of the land and gave us a quote.

With impending, possible horrible weather on the way, I called to let him know that sooner would be better to work on the lot.  Once my hill gets wet, it becomes a slip and slide.  Seeing as he would need to bring in 6 fully loaded trucks of earth, he agreed to come last week.  The lowest end looked like it was only 8 inches from the highest corner of the land, which we needed to match.  (We don't dig into the hill to build.  The water runoff would undermine the foundation and cause for a wet barn interior.)  After the landscaper began working and put his laser to work, it turned out the 8 inches was closer to 18 and the lot didn't slope in just ONE direction, but in TWO.  So 6 loads of earth turned into 15!

Three Days later, my wallet now much lighter, we have a flat area for our barn.  It will sit and wait patiently for the barn raising.  In the meantime, Mother Earth will snow, and rain, and settle the earth.  (Earth mover worked three days at 45')  The day after he finished we got 4 inches of snow.  The trucks never would have made it.

Meanwhile, to save a little of my sanity, I decided the new barn needed its own painting.  Not just a simple barn quilt square this time.  Nope.  As a nod to my Pennsylvania roots, this barn would have an Amish Hex sign on it.  Full of history and meanings, I spent several days designing and drawing the pattern out.  It would need to be much larger than the standard 24 inches to be seen from the road.  I decided on a 40 inch circle and pointed the fiberglass steed towards the local big box store for plywood.

I also picked up a quart of base paint.  Instead of using a traditional stark white, I went with a slightly tinted white which leaned towards almond.  With the barn being a deep dark brown, I felt true white would be too stark.  For the other colors, I already had several small jars from other projects.  I did pick up a botanical green, a deep red called No more Drama, and an orange called Inferno.

Back to the workshop where a nail, piece of string with a loop, and a pencil worked to draw out a circle for the jigsaw.  After the shape was managed, a quick few passes with the sander on both sides gave me a great surface for the primer and paint.

Both sides were treated to two coats of paint and primer.

I then transferred my drawing to the board. (The drawing looks off center, but it is the camera angle.)

It is always the first brushstroke that makes me nervous.  After that initial stroke, creativity takes over and the only thing that slows me down is slow drying paint.

I started with the Distelfinks. This was done in the Turkish Tile Blue of the front door.

I added some white to the paint for some rosemal effects and to add dimension. Traditionally, there is a heart above the birds.  As I cannot stand the heart shape, I had to be more clever.  Watch the space between their tails and between their faces.

For their crests I used Behr Tropical Skies. It's kind of an electric Teal Blue.  I added white dots of decreasing size.

Red ring to match the DunRovin' Station star ring, the laurel wreath, and tulip get their first coat of paint.

Eyes are added and the book of knowledge.

Bird beaks and tulip leaves and stamens.

Tiny dot details and the Tropical Skies waves/ raindrops take shape.  Phases of the moon are added
and it is then I realized I was missing a wave to the right of the tulip.

I added an acorn to the bottom.  The stamens kept grabbing my attention.  It looked like a bug with
its antennae sticking out of the tulip.  After Doc looked at it, he saw slug eyeballs from the children's movie Epic.  So here's our little secret laugh.

Here it is completed.  It still needs 4 or 5 coats of polyurethane, but I've got time to do that.  It will hang on the barn, facing the house so that we can enjoy it.  (See the two negative space hearts?)