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Painting #RENOVATE48TH

September 29, 2016

This is the LONG overdue post on how we painted our house – by ourselves!

If you missed the post on how we decided on our exterior color you can read that here. Today I’m going to unpack how we went about the physical painting of the house and all the nitty-gritty details that everyone forgets about (including me!). When I write these posts I’m ALWAYS shocked by how much work these projects can be,  and how time consuming it is to caulk FIVE BILLION NAIL HOLES!! Okay, I kid. But as you will soon read, paint doesn’t cover a multitude of flaws unless you apply some putty and caulk first.


We picked Pure White by Sherwin Williams for our exterior color. Here Nick is testing out a patch on the West side of our house. The stars happened to align that weekend and we bought our paint the when they had a 20% off deal – this helps when you’re spending $$$$ on paint.

 Getting Down to Business

After deciding on our color we pressure washed the entire house and scraped off paint that was peeling. We underestimated how long it would take to do this part, we spent an entire week of evenings pulling every last nail that had been left behind by the siding that was on top of the cedar. After this Nick caulked around each window and I caulked all the holes and spaces where the boards met so that the paint would make the siding look seamless. The one downside to picking white is that you see various imperfections but I like to think that its an old house and its not supposed to be perfect. We didn’t focus too much on the old windows as they will be replaced within the next year.

We solicited some help from a friend who had a spray gun and the expertise from being a house painter in his previous job. This was truly invaluable, spray guns take a certain skill in operating and cleaning after use. It took us about 2 hours to tape off the two doors, 11 windows and the roof over the two porches which meant lots of paper and tape to get the job done correctly.


The coverage was amazing and because of the rain we didn’t apply two coats. In fact, we only used about 10 gallons of paint total–excellent coverage and the paint sprayer did not suck up a lot of paint like some tend to do.  The paint sprayer has two parts you can connect to the nozzle: one that goes into a 5 gallon bucket and one that you hook up a small one quart reservoir bottle to.  The cleanup was a cinch–just take the nozzle apart and clean each little piece in a sink and stick the jetpack in a bucket of hot soapy water and turn it on to flush the tube.



The house when we bought it in August 2015 – Who would have thought we had windows behind those bushes!?


The house as of July 2016 – After tearing off the green press board siding and shingles, and replacing with new bevel cedar siding and T1-11 on The Skirt.

(read about this transformation HERE).



Pretty impressive, right? My girlfriend recently had her house painted and said it cost her around $6k, so if you have the DIY spirit, you can save a big chunk of change doing it yourself.


This last photo is my favorite. Eventually all of our windows will be like this one with the black frame. It really makes the window ‘POP’ and helps the house have a modern element without detracting from its original 1923 simplicity.


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