Life has been a bit crazy for me lately. It is a busy time for many… a transitional time for some with schools already back in session while others are still able to relax on vacation during these last few weeks of August.
Even with all the craziness in my day, life is good. I can usually handle a lot on my plate, but with our moving “To Do” list and a few business trips, I realize I can’t do it all. Hence the lack of posts the past few weeks. I’m trying, but I also know I’m human and run this blog of mine pretty much by myself so I have to go easy on myself.
Ed and I have gotten a ton accomplished on our “To-Do” list…new carpet, light fixtures, cabinets in the laundry room, faucets, plumbing, painting, fixing, trimming, cleaning, and purging. We filled a huge dumpster that we had in our driveway for 10 days. It made the process of getting rid of unwanted items a bit easier. I kept nice things and have them on one side of the garage waiting for the thrift store to come with a truck to pick them up. The house is looking good, but focusing on the “To-Do” list has taken me away from creating blog posts.
The biggest project on my getting the house ready to move “To Do” list is refinishing and re-staining the deck. Say…what? Didn’t you just do that in the fall? Yep!
Last fall I used a new product called Restore 10X on the deck and was quite happy with the results. I followed all the steps EXACTLY and it all looked great. In the Spring I was still singing the products praises. My deck never looked better. Then around late June I noticed a small section looked different and when I touched it, the thick painted coat lifted right off in my hand in one big sheet!!! As the weeks went by I noticed a few more small spots. I couldn’t believe the paint was failing since I took my time, did everything according to the directions and still the product was failing. One of my readers commented that she experienced the same thing and told me the product ruined her deck. I started to research online for a fix and all I found was many other homeowners in the same situation…all very upset.
When I realized we were going to move, I knew I could not leave the deck as it was for new owners or disguise the areas where the product failed. I would not be able to sleep at night. I had to get the deck surface back to normal, but how?
The products mentioned on the Rustoleum website didn’t help remove it at all. I spent hours researching. I tried power washing, chipping and strippers, none of it worked. After all my research we ended up renting a drum sander with 36 grit sandpaper to remove it. It worked, but was a huge undertaking.
It took Ed 2 days to get the product off. I felt so bad since I felt it was all my fault using a “new product” for such a large project, but Ed is my rock and told me not to think that way. After two days of sanding, he got it all off….“whew!”
On the bright side of this product/project fail and all the time and expense for the drum sander rental and sandpaper is that the wood on the deck looks better than ever now. A fresh new surface. I will stain it along with the railings over the next few days with the product I have used on it for years…Behr Solid Color Stain that I have color-matched to the siding on the house and in white for the railings… my tried and true.
Sometimes it is worth just sticking with the products you know work and leave the new stuff on the store shelves until the company has time to see how it really works out in the real world and not in a test lab.
I learned a lot from this fail… NEVER use a new product for a large project. Test it out on a smaller one first. I feel that this product was not ready for the consumer market since I did everything according to the directions. Rustoleum now has a new primer to use before using the product and they have new videos with new directions. All the consumers who used it before this, had to find out the hard way that the product was not ready to be on the market at least for consumer use.
I don’t want to leave you with a negative vibe, so I thought I would share the product wins that I have used in my home.
These are the products that worked beautifully and have stood the test of time…I sing their praises and will use them in my next house.
Gallery Glass – It is going on 20 years since I used Gallery Glass on the sidelights by my front door. It is one great product. I hope they never stop making it. It is still available at some craft stores and on Amazon.
- Project: Foyer Sidelights
AirStone – This is one of those dream products. AirStone is fake stone that can be used on fireplaces and walls that make them look like a real stone facade. It is affordable and easy to use. It looks just like stone. I smile every time I look at my fireplace.
- Project: Fireplace Makeover
Zinsser Ultimate Polyurethane – I used this poly on my Staircase Redo – If my new house has carpeted stairs, I will not hesitate one minute to rip the carpet up and use this poly to create a classic stained steps with white painted riser staircase.
- Project: Staircase Makeover
Poplar Plywood – The banquette in my kitchen is a built-in that I can’t take with me to the next house, but sure wish I could. My dad helped me with it. :-) He passed away a year and a half ago and every time I sit on it I am reminded of him and his love of woodworking. He hand picked the plywood which was poplar. It costs more than regular plywood, but was worth every cent. No warping or roughness even after 18 years and daily use.
- Project: Kitchen Banquette
Fabric Medium – I painted an upholstered chair earlier this year so it hasn’t stood the long test of time, but so far, I am quite pleased with the results. I sit on the chair every morning when I read my favorite blogs and catch up with email. I also sit on it when I take the time to read. I don’t know why I waited so long to try using fabric medium. But if I find an upholstered piece of furniture that is in good shape at a yard sale, but don’t like the color. I will use this method and product to transform it.
- Project: Painted Upholstery
DIY Chalk Paint – Calcium Carbonate Powder is my tried and true ingredient that I use to make chalk paint.
Minwax Polycrylic – It is water-based poly, easy to use and comes in 3 different sheens, as well as a spray formula.
Glidden Gripper – Love this stuff. It is affordable and the best primer I have ever used. I use it on many projects. I wrote about it, here.
Purdy Paint Brushes – I would not paint with anything but a Purdy paint brush. I have been using them for a long time. They lessen the look of brush strokes, don’t shed, and if you take care of them they will last for years. Worth every cent!
Martha Stewart Crafts Decoupage – I like this Matte Multi-Surface Decoupage formula much better than Mod Podge. It goes on smooth and dries to a non-sticky clear finish.
Project: Map Covered Boxes
CitraStrip Stripper – The first time I stripped a piece of furniture I used a heavy duty stripper that made me sick. It smelled horrible and ate through everything it touched, even the gloves I wore to protect my skin while using it. Soon after I learned about CitraStrip. It is the only stripper I use now. It takes a little longer to do the job, but is less toxic and has little smell. I like that it comes in a spray can, too.
Project: Repurposed Mirror Coffee Table
I have to remember that I found some of these great products after another product failed and I went in search of something better.
Note to self: Don’t let projects stress me out. It’s not only about the finished project, but more about the journey that gets you from Point A to a happy Point B.
What are your favorite tried and true products?