Our back deck is finally stained! Hallelujah! You’ve heard me yammer on about staining this deck now for weeks and the weather finally cooperated long enough for me to get it done. It feels great to check this off my list.
When we designed the deck, we opted for a shadowbox-type approach for the walls. It gave it the modern horizontal look we wanted, saved us some money on materials and keeps the space nice and breezy (vs. doing a solid vertical wall). I talk more about our approach in this post, including where we started and where we ended up. We used the very talented Bill Harris from Custom Carpentry in NKY to bring our vision to life. Here’s what it looked like when Bill wrapped up his part (it was about 90% done at this point).
That was in November of last year. And it sat and sat. There’s actually some merit to letting treated lumber “sit” for awhile, but I doubt they meant for nearly a year. Whoops. I had been putting it off because I knew it was going to take forever. While the design of the walls is awesome visually and functionally, getting the nooks and crannies of those bad boys stained is right up there on the torture scale with painting kitchen cabinets. It was one of those “take a vacation day” type of jobs, if you know what I mean.
But wait… I had forgotten about these lovely little devices called paint sprayers!! D’uh!! Guess what sprayers can also spray? Wood stain! (Stain is actually much easier/less fuss in a sprayer versus paint because you don’t have to water it down like you do paint.)
Here is when being a blogger comes in handy. I emailed my contact at HomeRight and asked for a prayer to review, and she recommended the Finish Max sprayer. My very own showed up in the mail a few days later.
I have to admit—I was intimidated by this thing. It looks and feels very powerful. It IS powerful. But it was so easy to use. I was expecting to spend 2 torturous days staining our deck by hand and it took me like two hours. TWO HOURS. There is nothing I love more than something that saves me time.
A couple of things to note on spraying vs. staining:
- You’ll use more stain (so be sure to have some extra on hand)
- You’ll need to stay close to the wood (about 4-10 inches) to ensure you don’t waste too much (took me awhile to get this down!)
- You’ll need to practice the spraying motion on a piece of cardboard to avoid getting those start and stop circles
- You’ll need a long extension cord so you can move with freedom
- You’ll need a good stain brush to smooth out any drips (I used this one)
- You’ll need some mineral spirits and a bucket for cleanup
- You’ll need to plan a date night to celebrate all the free time you’ll suddenly have (no seriously, we went out that night)
As far as the supplies we needed—we didn’t need much! The stain we used is called ProLuxe Cetol SRD RE in a Cedar Matte Finish… pretty much the Mercedes Benz of wood stains… it went on like buttah! I also really liked this AllPro Stainer Brush I borrowed from my dad. I can’t find the link for it, but this one is a similar size.
The color of the stain turned out so pretty. I was a little worried because sometimes cedars come out too orange, but this one was just right while still coordinating with the color of our cedar playhouse.
A year ago it looked like this (below), so I’d say we’ve made a vast improvement on this space!
I’m not completely done here (I’d like to paint the floor) but I’m happy for now!