Wednesday, July 29, 2015

We Painted the Deck Furniture Crazy

This deck furniture is nothing special. It came with the house, so had been sitting outside on the deck for at least four years before we bought it, and it sat outside for another full year before it occurred to me to do anything with it, and that only happened because one piece of it, two chairs connected by a table in between, completely broke apart in my hands as I tried to move it to a new spot.

Can't have the deck furniture coming apart in one's hands, or under one's butt, now can we?

The furniture clearly needed paint and sealer, but I didn't want to paint all that by myself. Will painted one chair last year (and that one's holding up great--thanks, Will!), but that experience was tedious enough to teach her that she did not want to paint all that, either.

So let's make a list:

  1. The deck furniture needs to be painted.
  2. Nobody wants to do the job.
  3. The paint does not need to be cute, because the furniture is nothing special.
What can I do to tempt the family into helping me simply get paint onto deck furniture?

I'll tell the kids that we're going to CRAZY paint it!

Before the kids were born, Matt and I spent a summer on the porch of our rental house, taking turns reading to each other from the porch swing and crazy painting my mother's old rocking chair. We painted it in a riot of colors and patterns using Matt's old art school acrylics, and although the rocking chair was ugly as hell, we had a fabulous time together doing it. How nice would it be to recreate that happy memory with the kids?

Will helped me prime all the furniture (thank goodness for our paint sprayer! Watching her contentedly prime this furniture gave me the realization that after this particular project, I just need to hand a kid a paint sprayer to get anything that I want painted. Next time!), and then I brought out all our craft acrylics and all our artist acrylics and explained to the kids that we could paint all the furniture however we wanted, doing whatever we wanted. Syd immediately then, of COURSE, chose the ugliest technique in existence:

Splatter paint. UGH!

Oh, well. All that matters is that paint is on the furniture. It does NOT have to be cute.

Process not product, My Friends! I just have to remember process, not product.

And maybe that particular chair will need to be repainted next year, darn.

Neither kid had bottomless levels of enthusiasm for this project, but they were happy enough to come out and paint off and on for a few days running:

I even got Matt to paint with us a couple of times!
Notice that in this photo, Syd is actually painting the driveway, not the furniture. Sigh...
 The finished furniture, all painted and sealed, is not going to win any beauty awards--

Especially this one. Ugh!
I added some image transfers to this one, just for fun.
--but it's all got paint on it, which was the point of the process. I got plenty of help putting that paint on, I got everyone to work together a couple of times, and everyone is able to take ownership of the final product.

And we'll have more fun with it next year when it turns out that we have to repaint that one chair, because oops, I forgot to seal it!


Tina said...

That splatter chair should sit outside the movie theater if they ever show a slasher flick. My in-laws have an entire room that they let the kids splatter paint (back in the 80's or 90's) in a red, white, and blue theme. It doesn't look awful...

I really hope that someday I can buy a house that has some really cool stuff that got left behind.

I couldn't help but notice the raccoon trap out there as well. Did you ever catch the second one?

julie said...

It doesn't look awful, huh? That's actually pretty high praise for splatter paint.

It's been a while since we've had a raccoon in the trap, and I'm trying to be hopeful that we got them all. I am going to be a nervous wreck, however, when it's time for these chicks to go outside, even after we've re-secured the chicken yard better.