Wednesday, October 30, 2019

An end to another painting season

I woke up to snow on the ground this morning and this is what things look like out behind the Tiny Bungalow. I guess it is safe to say that another painting season has come to an end. The north side of the house and gable work are going to have to wait until the spring.   

Luckily I had a good weekend and was able to get most of the south side finished though. I'd like to get another coat on things if there is a warm up but otherwise, it is looking good. 

Wednesday, October 23, 2019

More Siding Restoration Work

I really should post on this thing more than once a year. Actually, I really should work on the house more than once a year but life being as it is, I just haven't had the time. Hopefully that will change in the coming year. 
 This [ast spring I was able to finish all of the painting on the front of the house (except the front gable). We will be hiring out the gable work because it is just too precarious for me and I don't want to take any chances.
I also tackled the south side of the house. This side is by far the worst in terms of condition. This is where the flashing from the roof went behind the fascia so there was quite a bit of damage. The scraping and sanding was extensive.   

There was also a tiny bit of carpentry work required on this side. When the PO installed the siding, they removed the piece of trim above the bottom board on the bay. I replaced that with a new piece of trim.

It was great to "turn the corner" on the painting and it is looking great. I should be able to finish this side and maybe even get a bit of the north side done before the snow starts flying. Crossing my fingers for some good weather this weekend!

Sunday, November 04, 2018

Another painting project before the winter hits

I'll admit, I haven't been working as diligently as I should have on my exterior painting. I did get quite a bit of interior work completed this year but when it comes to the outside, I have not been as productive. One item I did want to take on before the cold weather hit was the front porch. I did finish scraping, priming and painting the front columns.  

I went back and forth on how to deal with the many layers of paint that were on the stucco. I decided to remove what I could and then apply a couple coats of Thorocoat over everything. A local paint store was able to tint it so that it was a close match to the color I was painting my clapboards. The scraping and painting the stucco was tedious work. I still have a couple minor touch ups to do but I am happy with the results.  

Hopefully I can tackle a second coat on the trim and be finished with this before the end of the year. It will all depend on weather at this point.

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Researching Painting Techniques

Because Oak Park has such a rich architectural heritage, you don't have to walk far to find many examples of excellent exterior color schemes for every house size and style. Before I started my project, I spent a lot of time looking at the better examples around the village, studying details and looking at the techniques used on each home. 
Bungalow paint scheme in Northeast Oak Park
Four color color scheme used on an Oak Park Foursquare

Brick Foursquare with a striking color scheme on windows, columns and dormer.

Somber color scheme on a Prairie School masterpiece.

Dark trim that accentuates the details on a light-colored home.

Remarkable dark color scheme on one of our finest Queen Anne homes. 
One of the differences I noticed on homes in the village was the technique used to paint the trim and body of the home. More often than not, the smaller homes, with simpler color schemes, were painted with the body color splashed onto the side of the window trim and corner boards. This is how my neighbor's home is painted and it is how mine was painted. To me, this manner of painting mad the trim look flat.
Detail of paint showing siding color on the side of a trim board. 
Detail of the Tiny Bungalow windows showing the siding color on the side of the window trim. 
When I looked closely at the more elaborate paint jobs, on larger homes, I noticed that the trim was painted the same color on all sides and the siding color was different. To me, this made the trim appear more dimensional and provided better articulation.   

Trim painted the same color on all sides, with a different colored siding.

Home with trim painted the same color on all sides. 
I looked at several painting blogs and asked some painters about this and got some interesting answers. One painter, who painted only the face of the trim noted that they would spray paint the entire house and then come back and paint the surface of the trim because it was faster. Another noted that painting only the front of the trim created a "clean edge" that they thought was more appealing than the jagged line created along the edge of the siding when the side of the trim was painted. 

Many painters adhered to the notion that the trim should always be painted first, on all sides, and that the body color was then added to come up to the trim. The same technique used on the inside of the home: painting the trim first and then the walls, should be used on the exterior of the home. This technique made a lot more sense to me and the dimensional quality of the trim is more important to me than the clean line so I decided to follow this manner of painting.  

Step one: Painting the trim, on all sides.

Step two: Painting the siding or "body" color.

Step three: painting the window and sills. 
For the finishes of the paint, I decided to also follow a common practice of using a gloss or semi-gloss on the trim and sashes and a flat color on the body of the home. The gloss helps protect areas that will come in contact with people more often (like doorways when you are walking by, trim when adding or removing storms, or sashes while opening and closing windows) and the body is a dull color so that imperfections in the surface are kept to a minimum.