Good Project Bad Project

I have a win and a fail-recover to share with you. Needless to say, Mr. P was responsible for the win and yours truly for the failure (and the recovery). Let’s start with Mr. P’s weekend project.

Back Yard Before

This is a picture of the back porch shortly after we bought the house in early spring. Unfortunately, this is the best before picture I can offer. If you look to the left of the porch, you’ll notice that the back yard leads directly into the driveway and to the front yard. We took down the chain link fence our home came with (except along the back edge of the yard–it’s covered with vines, so it’s not a chain link eyesore and gives us time to get to know our back neighbors and make sure they’re ok with us replacing the fence) and replaced it with a new wooden fence, all except for this one spot. We have high hopes of building a garage, but since this project keeps pushing itself further down our list, Mr. P decided to go ahead and close our backyard (this sounds like a cry for a puppy).

We built a fence!

Ta da! In 24 hours, Mr. P single handedly finished this beauty. Let’s have another look.

We built a fence!

From the driveway vantage. I’m loving the hardware on it. Whenever we have projects that require a large amount of supply buying (like a fence), we wait until we a) have saved up for our project and b) have a 20% off Lowes coupon. Oh yeah, they exist and so far our 2-part fence building projects have revolved around getting our hands on those suckers.

Ok, on to the failure.

Porch Floor Before

This was our porch back on Memorial Day when we built the pallet seating (I still owe you guys a tutorial on that). 10 points if you can spot the husband. Ok, 10 points! Anyway, the porch floor was in terrible shape and between Memorial Day and now, it only got worse. Peeling paint, faded areas, the porch needed a paint job. I wasn’t planning on tackling this project because next summer we’re hoping to put a roof over the porch and once it has that protection, then we want to replace the flooring out here since it’s in such terrible shape. I went to Lowes for who knows what and, as always, I scanned the clearance paint section to find a GALLON of no-skid porch paint in a rusty red color for only $10. TEN DOLLARS. Uh, yeah. It’s worth $10 and an afternoon even if we do rebuild the porch in a year. So I bought it.

An hour or twenty of porch prep later (sanding off peeling paint, sweeping, etc), the first few paint strokes go on to reveal the brightest shade of salmon you’ve ever seen. So bright you weren’t sure if you were going to paint your little girl’s nursery that color, no less your porch… At this point I figured, ok, pink is better than peeling paint, so let’s continue. I continue to find that it’s drying much darker (ie better), so on I go, until I run out of paint. Wait, what? I had a gallon. What the heck. Yeah, I run out of paint and there are approximately 8 square feet of unpainted porch left. UGH. So I go to Lowes with my empty bucket, resigned to the fact that this project will cost more than my thrifty $10, and ask them to color match for me. “We can’t color match this,” the girl behind the counter says. *RECORD SCRATCH* You see, I have a girl at Lowes who does my color matching for me. She’s the bomb. She matched a paint sample that was a mixure of two totally different paints and she got it perfectly right. Obviously, she wasn’t working this day and I was in a hurry to get this project done. SO, I pull out the booklet of porch paints and attempt to match it myself. “Adobe.” Found it. That’s exactly it. Kind of a terra cotta/brick color.

Porch Fail

Wrong. Wrong wrong wrong wrong wrong wrong wrong wrong.

I was freaking out at this point. Oh, and the skid-free paint was only available by the gallon, and since I only needed a quart to finish the job I got normal porch paint. So, in summary, the porch is covered with skid-free paint everywhere except for the stairs… FAIL.

After a few deep breaths, I decided to take the remaining paint and blend the salmon square into the brick-colored porch. I just couldn’t handle wasting more money on a temporary solution to this porch. And as Mr. T says, it’s all about recouping. And this situation was absoludicrous.

Blending two porch colors.


I took a paint brush and, loaded with the new paint, gave each plank a single stroke or two. It was the opposite of thorough. Just quick, dry strokes.

Blending two porch colors

The blending wasn’t as smooth a process as I had hoped, but the overall effect was successful and the porch, much improved.

Porch After

Once we added our porch furniture back, it’s hardly noticeable. So while this bricky-pink color is definitely not what I would have chosen, it’s still an improvement, and a cheap one at that.


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