Now that it’s warming up a bit around here, we’ve been in full force outdoor home improvement mode. The big ticket thing we’ve wanted to accomplish this year was staining our fence.
When we moved in, it had basically no stain left on it. However, we had bigger fish to fry than the fence…like a new couch, furnace, dishwasher, garbage disposal and parts of our AC. It’s been an eye sore since we’ve moved in and I was so excited that it had moved it’s ugliness to the top of the list this year.
You can see what the yard looked like when we moved in and the full effect of the the fence here, but in the mean time, here a are a few pictures.
A nice picture from this time last year, with the ugly fence in the background.
Another picture of the fence and our little garden from last year.
A Complicated Endeavor
As usual, these things always end up being WAY more complicated than we expected.
The power washing ended up taking Jordan close to 14 hours. His Dad let us borrow his for a week (saving us $80 in rental fees) but it was in the 50’s outside. So there was a lot of coming inside to warm up and then braving the cold again to finish the job after work each day.
Looks like we’re going to need to pull out the touch up paint for the table here soon, huh?
Once that was done, we had to wait for the fence to dry AND for the weather to be warm enough AND for it to be rain free for basically a week.Here’s the fence all stripped AND our new expanded raised beds.
Unfortunately, the weather issues were the least of our worries. Picking out a stain is hard. Like 15-20 trips to Home Depot/Lowes/ Paint stores, hard. My poor children were with me for most of those trips too.
There are a million and one different types of stain on the market. Acrylic, oil based, linseed, NO linseed. My little researching brain just went into overdrive mode and burned itself out.
Everyone I talked to had a different opinion on what we should use and I just found myself spinning in circles. We’d find one and then realize that they don’t sell samples. Or I’d buy a sample and it would look nothing like the little swatch in the store.
Painting is one thing. But stain isn’t so easily covered up, it has to be stripped. Which basically meant I had to get it right the first time. NO pressure.
We ended up going with Ready Seal in Redwood. I loved the color, which is more than I could say about anything else I’d tried.
And when it comes time to stain it again, we just have to paint it over the current layer. No stripping necessary (yay!). It was probably one of the most expensive brands on the market, but it went on so easy I think it was worth it. It really is a “goof proof” product.
Are you ready to see the after pictures?
You like our Caboose playhouse in progress?
I clocked a good 12 hours staining over 1500 square feet of fence. It would have gone faster if our fence wasn’t on it’s last good leg. Rolling stain over perfectly flat boards is a lot faster than brushing/rolling each individual board. But hey, it’s done now.
Also, I happened to check out my favorite clearance rack at Lowes, and what do you know, I found these perfectly good hanging baskets of Boston Ferns and Petunias for $3 each. Booya!
(If your kids are bored, give them some stumps to play with. Endless HOURS of fun for them. And we got these for free.)
What do you think? Have you stained a fence before? Was it as much work as you thought it was going to be?