I have a confession to make today. I often encourage other people to live on the edge a little when it comes to décor, but I am seldom daring enough to do it myself. I say things like ‘it’s just paint’ or ‘it only cost $30, so who cares if it only lasts a couple of years’, but then I don’t follow that philosophy myself.
Today’s post is kind of about that.
But let’s start at the beginning. For a while now I’ve been looking for the perfect vintage sign to hang between the doors on my carriage house. I have hung things in that spot in the past, like the sled I painted last Christmas …
and I have also had that fun galvanized container in that spot for a few years now.
But I want to change it up. For the last couple of years I’ve just put a big fern in that container for the summer and called it good. My carriage house faces north, so that’s a pretty shady spot. But just shoving a fern in there every summer seems kind of lame.
A couple of weeks ago I accepted the fact that if I wanted a good sized sign for that spot I was going to have to make it myself (or spend a ton of money). So I dug through my stash and came up with an old cupboard door that I’ve had for quite a while. It’s on the large side, and I’ve been using it as a work surface on top of two saw horses. I measured it and realized it was the perfect size for that spot.
Next I ordered a large stencil from Wallcutz to fit.In the meantime, I painted the door in Dixie Belle’s Drop Cloth in anticipation of the stenciling. The stencil arrived in no time (Wallcutz really does ship things fast). After playing around with the placement a bit, I decided to just use the wording from the stencil but not the border. The border didn’t quite fit properly on my door. To give the sign a more custom look I taped off a simple border and painted it black.
After I had the sign painted, I thought it might be fun to hang some of my watering cans from it. So I added some hooks and hung the cans.
So far so good, but now comes the part I’m not so sure about.
A few weeks ago I was visiting my friend Jackie and I happened to mention to her that I was looking for a potting bench to go outside, something like what she had, and she said she had the perfect thing! She showed me a primitive wood cabinet that was tucked away in the corner of her garage, behind a couple of other things.
It was awesome. I knew right away that I wanted it. And Jackie’s husband was even kind enough to deliver it once they’d dug it out of the garage. But once I’d taken possession of it, I started to feel like it would be wrong to waste this piece by using it outside.
It won’t hold up to the elements forever. Of course, I can mitigate some of that by only leaving it out in the summer, and tucking it away inside the carriage house in the winter, so that would help.
But still. Do I dare?
I have some large, industrial wheels that Ken is going to help me put on the bottom to get it up off the ground and to make it more portable. And I plan on giving it a good scrub and then a couple of coats of sealer to help protect it. So both of those things will help as well.
But still. Do I dare?
It’s going to get rained on in that spot. The inside probably won’t dry out well, especially since it’s so shady there.
I’m not a huge fan of the blue on the doors, so I might want to re-paint those if I keep it, but I love the multi-colored, worn out boards that make up the top.
And it really is the perfect size for that spot.
Although I just have some clay pots and other garden implements on top for these photos, it would make the perfect spot for some potted plants. Especially house plants that come outside for the summer and can’t be in direct sunlight.
I’ll have to move the sign up a bit to make a little more room under those watering cans, especially once the wheels have been added, but that’s easy enough.
All of which brings me back to my original question.
Do I just go for it and use this piece outside knowing that it won’t last forever, but I’ll probably get a few good years out of it? Do I dare?
What would you do?