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Thursday, June 30, 2011

Made at 173: The Untimely-But-Fun $5 Potting Bench (Part 2)

I got home from work today and ran right outside to get the potting bench finished.  In case you've forgotten (and don't know how to look at previous posts), here's where we left off (7/8 done):


Stained with Behr Deck Stain (coffee), the same color used on the semi-wattled garden fence.  I painted the lattice with some leftover exterior trim paint in a kind of light green.  


Still think we're going to move it a little.  That boxwood next to the bench is coming out.  It was put there (temporarily) several years ago but we couldn't find a good spot for it...goodbye boxwood!


No idea what's up next - maybe I should make a list!

Sunday, June 26, 2011

$5 Potting Bench OR: I Really Didn't Need To Do This Right Now

In upstate New York where we live, winter lasts what seems to be six months.  Okay, it's not that long, but when you add in inclement weather to the long winters, well - you get the idea.  Anyway, when the weather gets good enough to work on the outdoor projects, it's a mad dash to get as much done as possible before...next winter!

There's tons of projects I need to get done this summer, and one of them was NOT building a potting bench.  But, as is my wont - I did.  I woke up yesterday with a potting bench in mind.  Maybe I saw something on HGTV, I don't know.  But I built one, and here it is - about 7/8 finished.  I still need to do some tweaking and staining, but:

The guy who owned out house before us worked for an electric and gas company.  Every now and then I find some strange artifact or DIY project from 50 years ago that in some way relates to the previous owner's vocation!  One is example is that I have these huge timbers under my porch.  See the board the falcon (eagle?) is sitting on?


THAT's what I have a bunch of.  So I pulled some out:


And started building the potting bench.  In the past I had thought about making one out of cedar or some other fine wood, but lately I've been on this kick about using up scrap wood.


So here's the (7/8) finished product:


I know, I know.  I didn't notice until I saw the picture, but the board on top is a bit, shall we say - skewed?  I'll fix that.  I also want to add a skirt in the fron under the table portion to finish the look a bit.

So here's a materials list with costs:

4x4 (4).....free (the old telephone pole boards that came with the house)
3/4 x 12.....$0 (leftover from another project)  *I ripped them on my table saw to make the top of the bench.
1x6.....$0  (leftover from another project)  *Used for the bottom "shelf"
3/4 x 8.....$5 (again, ripped on my table saw to make the skirts)
Lattice.....$0 (leftover from another project)
Stain....$0 (who doesn't have cans of deck stain laying around?)

TOTAL COST:  $5

I think we're going to position the bench in a different spot, I'll post the final project when staining, etc is done.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Shingling the Back Porch Part 2

After shingling the back wall of the back porch, I finally got around to doing the side wall.  In the grand scheme of things it hasn't been all that long, but I definitely didn't want to get into the habit of leaving projects "mostly done."

After work last Tuesday, I went outside and ripped off that horrible vinyl siding:


Once again the clapboard was in really bad shape.  Once again - 1/2" plywood went over it, then covered in 30W tar paper:


Okay, okay...I realize the courses don't line up, and I'd love to say that was planned, or the result of necessity due to some architectural issue.  The truth is - I didn't think about it until the last two courses.  Ugh!  Oh well, I just can't bring myself to tear it back off and start again.  I'm sure the day will come when it'll need replacing!  Besides, once the Rose of Sharon has grown and the rain barrel is back in place - it'll be hard to notice!  At least that's what I tell myself.


Then came the commitment question:  what color?  I mean really, this is a pretty serious question because we have plans for the house and we had to decide on colors.  Now.  We chose Olympic "Ginger" deck stain.  In the can it looked olive green and reminded me of my Army days.  As I started applying I was panicked!  I just couldn't imagine my house that color.  But as it dried I lightened to the exact shade of brown I had always pictured!  My lucky day!



So this is how it turned out.  I really liking it.  I love the brown vs. white contrast.  I think I want to do the upper part of the porch too...but not right now.  I think I've had enough of shingling for the moment!


Before:


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