Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Choosing Exterior Stain.... Help!

Thanksgiving gave me a much needed break from my computer and the house.   I've been practically paralyzed with indecision this week and feeling a bit jittery about some choices that need to be made at the new house.  

Two words:  Exterior Colors.

Board and batten siding, trim, soffit, fascia, rafter tails, columns, girders, beams, porch ceilings......

My mind is bouncing around like a pinball.  Where to go darker, where to go lighter?  What to tie in with what?

It's a beautiful house and I don't want to mess it up!!!!  We'll be living with these color choices for a long time; it's not like I can decide one morning to buy a few gallons of paint and do a little redecorating.

The crew wants to put a coat of stain on the posts and rafters before building the timber-framed porch that will span the back of the house.   Friday is my deadline for giving them the stain!

We've been having some vibrant sunsets throwing color on the walls and on the timbers as they lay on the ground.  Pinks and hot oranges aren't typical Craftsman/Prairie colors, so I'll have to look elsewhere for inspiration.

This is the time that I wish I had "people" who would make these decisions for me.

I could show up on move-in day and presto:  there would be my house.  A house with beautifully coordinated stain.  And with doors (interior and exterior), stone, porch flooring, cabinets..... (Colors aren't the only choices on my radar this week!)

Let's get real, I couldn't let anyone make all those decisions for me!  I'd still be calling the shots but a little advice would be nice.  The guy at the Sherwin Williams store is helpful in a maddeningly uncommitted way; I think he's had many years of learning to smile and let the customer always be right.  I say one thing and he seems to agree.  I change my mind and he nods and agrees again.  He must be a great husband to someone!

I'll post some photos of the final selections tomorrow!


  1. laughing at the 'peace-keeping' sherman williams man. :) surely, that's what that job takes!

    good luck, dearie! i don't envy you!

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  3. Spell check, spell check, spell check!

    A tip I picked up from years of watching This Old House:

    Most paint stores offer 1/2 pint samples of tinted paints and stains. That's enough to cover a good size piece of scrap material used for each surface to be painted (siding, wallboard, etc.) Placing the actual material being used for each surface up against the wall lets you stand back and get a better idea of what that surface will look like than trying to hold one of those little paint chip strips up to the wall.

    Those sunsets are part of what makes living in these old mountains so worth it. I never tire of seeing them.

  4. Oh, I remember this process ... so difficult with so many choices!

  5. Good luck. We had cedar siding initially and then went to vinyl after it became too much to keep up. But I'm sure you'll make the right choice.

  6. OMG, I'm so glad I'm not you right now having to make those decisions. The anxiety of choosing and so many choices would make me nuts. I would just want to turn it all over to someone like you said. Can't wait to see what you pick and a new house pictures. This timberframe stuff sounds exciting.

  7. I recall when we built our home in Arizona a decade ago and I chose all my tile, countertops, paint colors for interior and exterior. You know... all the decisions that come with building a new home. One night I woke up having a nightmare about the color of the countertops and the floor tiles! I went to the tile store and ordered a different tile the next day! It was so overwhelming to have to make all those decisions so I totally understand.


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