Sprucing up the back yard was fun! After staining the deck and discovering the easy-to-use Olympic Deck Cleaner, Ryan quickly cleaned the patio stones and picnic table for me. As I got opportunity over the hot summer months, after work etc, I stained a few blocks at a time. Not that it was hard, as it wasn't, but heat exhausts me BIG TIME so I didn't have much stamina to do more than three or four blocks at a time. Heat coupled with the strain of being on your knees and bending over. Uh huh. I'm getting old and cramp up. LOL
I had 26 blocks to do and chose to do a checker pattern. I used Sico Solid Wood Stain and chose PPG colors Cinnamon Stick and Arbory. Arbory is the color I have on my exterior doors and Cinnamon Stick was the color that best matched the semi-transparent wood stain on all the exterior things around the house (shutters, fences, deck floor).
I chose to stain them instead of paint them because stain penetrates and paint lays on top. Paint would chip off. With staining wood, you have to let weather dictate when, etc. With staining the concrete, as long as the stain dried before rain hit everything was fine. After the first couple dried a couple of hours, I went out and tried scuffing it with my footwear and absolutely nothing happened. Since everything has been completed, we have drug the picnic table around over the blocks and still no damage at all. I am thinking the durability may be coming from the urethane that is in this particular brand of solid wood stain??
To do 26 blocks, you will need to purchase a gallon if you are doing just one color. With doing the two colors, I needed the second quart of each color to finish up.
The patio stones had been there for quite a few years. I think around 10 or more. I find that staining them really freshened up the whole look. And, not all of the stones were the same nor the same age so staining them made them all look cohesive.
The steel frame you are seeing in these pictures is the gazebo frame. The canopy 'aged out' . . . too many holes to fix. I tried to find a replacement canopy with no luck. This is a hexagon and the only one I could find remotely close was on Wayfair, was out of stock, and would have been a guess if it would have even fit because it lacked measurements. So. We purchased the building materials and will be building a 'normal' roof for it. Stay tuned for that post in a couple months.
For some odd reason, I have been unable to figure out (and I have worked in paint retail for a number of years), even though the paint color on the door is the very same as the stain color I used, the two came out looking very different from each other. The door paint has a tad of a green background hue and the stain has a blue hue. Being a perfectionist, this does irritate me. I tried to fix this issue when I got the stain for the front exterior projects (coming in the next post).