Amos Gooch's Cottage - part 2
My original concept for Amos’s cottage was of a house unfinished because of a faithless sweetheart. I had stained the shingles, using Minwax cherry stain, because it was supposed to be a pretty new house.
Now that Amos is older, the house needed to look older too. The shingles should look weathered, so I weathered them with paint.
I used acrylic craft paints, white, Payne’s gray and a small touch of Hauser medium green.
Payne’s gray is a purplish black color, when mixed with white it makes a bluish gray. I can’t exactly explain why I added the Hauser green, it just seemed the right thing to do. It’s how the color Green Earth, or Terre Verte, changes some colors. I was out of Green Earth, and Hauser Green seemed a good substitute.
I started by mixing the colors, then, with some of the paint still on the brush, I dipped the brush in water and began brushing water on the brown shingles.
If you apply the paint directly, the shingles will absorb more paint, and you’ll get a painted look. Wetting them first makes them absorb the paint more like a stain.
On the roof you can see I’m applying the wash quite quickly, the camera couldn’t keep up. I’m slopping it on and spreading it around.
Here I’m applying the gray paint. It’s not very thick, but not runny, either. I just keep brushing it on rather quickly. When you water down a paint, it acts like a stain. The depth of color depends on how much water you add.
After the first coat of weathering gray paint had dried, I applied another coat. You can see the lighter area has the second coat, the browner areas of wall are where I had applied the paint the day before.
It’s going to look a little streaky when it’s done, which is good. A point to keep in mind though, you want your streaks going the right way, up and down, or straight across on horizontal boards like the caps on top of the roof. They should never, ever, ever go diagonally.
Here’s the cottage, nicely stained a weathered gray.
Here’s a picture of my neighbor’s garage.
The color is pretty close. Actually, that garage was originally stained a light green, but to the previous owner’s chagrin, after a dozen years or so the green faded away altogether. Up under the eaves, you can still see a little of the original brown cedar shingles. Amos’s cottage shows a bit of the original brown here and there too. Wherever I had a little brown left in what I thought were the wrong places, I just dabbed on a little watered down gray paint. When it dried, it blended in with everything else.
On the roof edges, where you can see the ends of the shingles, and the plywood roof below, I used straight gray paint, without the preliminary wash. The rough wood absorbs the paint very quickly, and painting them, in the end, gives a stained look anyway.
I also brushed the watered down gray paint on the blue roof and the front door. I gave the roof several brush coats, it gave a nice aged look. I gave the front door one coat, then rubbed some of it off. The gray settled in the grooves of the wood, and mottled a little on the door, and I liked the look. It wound up looking like a door that could use a new coat of paint.
A word about roofing shingles. You may have noticed some of my shingles go a little higlety piggelty, a bit wavy. I just like that look. Sometimes roofing shingles should go on straight, but other times, like on cottages, they add a cuteness factor. I’m a sucker for a cute roof. :)
On the inside, I filled in a few gaps in the “plaster”. I used drywall compound and my usual supple artist’s palette knife. Some knives are fairly rigid. I like the ones that give a bit when pressed. I also decided to try a 1” disposable foam brush to spread the putty around and into the corners where the gaps were. It worked pretty well, working the putty into the gaps and smoothing it out.
When it was time to sand the repairs I used a combination of a foam sanding pad and an emery board. It also struck me that the foam brush might make a good wet sander for a few places, so I dipped it in water, squeezed out the excess and rubbed away. It did a pretty decent job.
By the way, I’ve found that if you cut the end of an emery board straight across, you can get into corners and tight spaces with it. Sometimes I’ll even bend the emery board into an L shape.