Black Garage!

valsparreserve

Ever since I got the idea in my head to paint my garage black, I haven’t really let go of it. As much as we know I love my black paint for all sorts of accent-y types of things, it’s not something I’d let loose on any and every house, but I have this whole vision for mine. It involves the following: since my house is Greek Revival (or, ya know, Greek Revival-ish), the only color that really feels right for the house itself is white, right? Maybe an off-white-ish-grey with a brighter white trim, but that’s about as far as I’m willing to go. Once I sort of clean up the architecture on the back and side of the house (bye-bye, mudroom and hazardous “side porch” thingy!), the house is going to be so pretty. The garage and even the nice new wood fence are never going to be things I want to highlight, so I like the idea of blacking them out and letting the house and the garden really shine. Black can seem bold, and in some contexts it is, but I think here it’ll do a nice job of receding and letting the house do the visual heavy-lifting. IT’S GOING TO WORK, OK? OK then.

garagebeforebefore2

Hot DAMN, look at that thing! I recently decided to find my house on Google Maps using the street view function, and evidently the last time the Google van rolled through Kingston was sometime before the house even went up for sale. After the previous owner of the house passed away, I knew the listing agent had stepped in to coordinate a little work on the house (repainting the wood trim, removing and remediating the oil tanks in the yard), and she’d mentioned at some point that they’d done some work on the garage during this time, but I never realized how bad it was. Yikes! Lookin’ pretty rough there, garage.

garagebeforebefore1

The garage isn’t original to the house, but it is quite old—I’d guess around the turn of the century, maybe a bit later. It’s seen some alterations over the years: the main door is much newer and probably replaced two side-by-side hinged carriage doors, there used to be another large window on the opposite side and two small windows on the back, one of which appears to have gotten poached for the laundry room. Anyway, I don’t really have a problem with continuing to alter it…some old houses come with some pretty magnificent garages/carriage houses that demand more careful preservation, but this isn’t really one of them. It can only go up from here, right?

GarageBefore1

Luckily by the time I bought the house, the garage was looking a little less horrific. The whole thing had been repainted, a brand new roof had been put on, and it was generally OK-looking. Still nothing gorgeous, but fine.

I’ve more or less left the garage alone until recently, mainly focusing on just cleaning up the overgrowth around it and using the inside as a glorified garbage dump. Cute, right? It’s never held a car as long as I’ve owned the house. Not once. I generally kind of forget that’s even a potential option, which is totally ridiculous.

garagebefore2

More recently, the garage has looked a little something more like this, kind of. Overgrowth more under control, asphalt removed, weird half-foundation behind the garage removed (evidently there was a garage expansion plan that never quite materialized, oof), and more or less a blank slate!

backyardrendering3

To jog your memory, here’s kind of the concept for how this area will look/function by the end of the week. KIDDING. But hopefully by the end of the summer? I’m trying here, folks. The plan is to remove the little window and the patch where there used to be another window and throw some french doors on the back of this bad boy to make storage and whatnot easier and, hopefully, the whole construction a little more attractive. I have high hopes. Since the garage isn’t spectacularly weather-tight or insulated or anything like that, I feel fine with going ahead and using french doors that are really intended for indoors (probably these) which are way cheaper than exterior doors. They’ll be painted black too…I’m lazy with SketchUp so use your imagination to fill in that gaping hole.

onyx1

ANYWAY. A few weeks ago, I dove into painting this mo’fo’! As usual, I did not take my own advice and did not get any samples—I just went with my old faithful Benjamin Moore, Onyx! Then I went with my other new-ish old faithful and had it color-matched at Lowe’s to their Valspar Reserve line of exterior paint and primer in one, which is magic stuff, for real. I’ve used the interior paint in my dining and living rooms (still looks awesome, FYI) and the exterior on Bluestone Cottage, and it’s been great! It’s about $45/gallon, which I think is totally reasonable for the quality compared to other brands.

My pals at Lowe’s generously stepped in to save my scrawny ass and sponsor a bunch of backyard projects for me this summer (thanks, guys!), so the paint was on them this time around, but otherwise the 5-gallon bucket would have run me about $215. Having used the paint before I knew more or less what to expect out of it, but I was still pretty amazed by the coverage! I considered using a tinted primer for the first coat and then two coats of paint, but decided to see how the paint performed on its own, and I’m glad I did! Usually painting super dark over super light (or vice-versa) means 3-5 coats of paint, but the coverage just with the first coat was incredible! Two coats had things looking pretty great, and then it’s just been touch-ups here and there to really get in all the nooks and crannies.

gardensprayer

As you might be able to tell, I did not go crazy with prep. When I restore the clapboard on the house I’ll probably aim to strip it down to bare wood (or close to it) before repainting, but there was no way I was about to put that much work into the garage. Instead, I went around on my ladder and used a scraper to flake off anything that was chipping or peeling (onto tarps to keep any possible lead-containing chips off the ground), and then gave the whole thing a good cleaning. For that part, I used a garden sprayer filled with TSP-substitute (I bought the powdered version and just mixed it with warm water) to clean off any dirt/grime/whatever that could interfere with good adhesion. I used reusable microfiber cloths, which I find are best for trapping all the crap when you’re cleaning by hand. The cleaning is a little slow and boring but super worth it!

onyx2

EEEEP! Painting that first wall was SO EXCITING that it probably took me twice as long as it needed to because I kept going across the street to see how it looked. Which admittedly is kind of insane and terrible in process, but getting a glimpse of how it would look completed was totally thrilling.

This was the stage during which I received some rave reviews from the neighbors, which included “hey, it’s your house” and “it’s definitely very…you” and “you should have painted it rainbow.” Aw, shucks.

onyx4

I think I took this photo after the second coat but before touch-ups, but here we go! Almost done! I LOVE it. Almost. I almost love it. I will love it. This is going to be one of those things that is going to look a little kooky and wrong until more of this exterior plan starts to come together—removing that chain-link fence is going to be HUGE HUGE HUGE, and I desperately need to do something about the windows on the garage door. That tattered, water-stained fabric curtain is not helping this cause! I love the idea of replacing the glass with a textured wire-mesh-reinforced glass, but that stuff is spendy and I don’t want to throw a lot of cash at this thing right now, so that might be a “someday” dream. I’ve been thinking about reviving ye olde cornstarch trick and just pasting some fabric up on that, at least for now, so we’ll see.

onyx3

Sorry about the crappy iPhone pics (I’ll post better ones when the fence goes in!), but I’m super into the way the black-on-black looks on this garage. I used flat paint, which makes me kind of like the scale-y texture of the old clapboards? It has a lot of character but it’s sort of subtle. I’m into it.

lightingroundup

ANYWAY, I do want to give the garage a little bit of bling, ya know? I need to redo the garage’s electric anyway, so I’ve been thinking about adding a larger light on the street side (between the circular window and the garage door) and two smaller sconces on either side of the french doors on the back. Sounds good, right? The street that the garage is on is a very small cross-street that gets basically NO light at night (which might sound nice but is kind of a safety hazard), so I think adding something to the garage will help out the street a little bit too. I’ll probably put that one on a timer switch and the two sconces on a regular switch, and LED bulbs in everything to keep them from being energy-sucks. If the bulb is going to be exposed, I’m totally trying those new LED Edison-style bulbs, which are so hokey that I feel my life is incomplete without them.

So. You know me, all hot 4 warm metallics. A copper light would look so fly on the black, especially as it patinas over time, right? Above are some of my favorites I’ve been tossing around—bigger guys for the front, smaller sconces for the back. Hmmmm.

1. Progress Lighting Brookside Copper Outdoor Wall Light, Lowe’s, $192.

2. The Maritime Copper Gooseneck Light (raw copper), Barnlight Electric, $379.

3. Starboard with Shade Sconce—Mini (weathered zinc), Restoration Hardware, on sale for $190.

4. Harbor Sconce—Large (weathered zinc), Restoration Hardware, on sale for $110.

5. Carson Straight Arm Wall Mount, Rejuvenation, $695. (good god, though, look at that thing!)

6. Avalon Indoor/Outdoor Sconce (black), Pottery Barn, on sale for $559/set of two.

7. The Bowie Copper Wall Sconce, Barnlight Electric, $200

This post is in partnership with my friends at Lowe’sThank you for supporting my sponsors!

 


190 Comments

  1. Actually the garage in-progress looked like a Holstein. Also cool.

  2. Yes! Yes! Yes! A thousand times yes! I especially love the crappy iPhone photo where you can see the texture. Makes me think the garage belongs in Salem, MA.

    Your updates always make me want to move to the area so I end up browsing zillow and found this adorable stone cottage that I have a major obsession with now. http://www.zillow.com/homedetails/2906-Rt-209-Marbletown-Kingston-NY-12401/2102173147_zpid/ I guess I need to get a job in the Hudson Valley so I can move there, huh?

  3. I love the black! Trying to get up the nerve to do my front door black. You could sponge Matte Medium from an art supply place on to the windows. I have done it on my french doors to make them kind of private. I was using a curtain on a rod but the pup thought it was her job to remove it. I just sponged on layers of the matte medium until I got the level of obscurity I wanted. You can easily scrape it off.

    • Huh, I’ll look into that Margaret, thank you!

      Black front doors are so classic! Nothing to be afraid of. :)

  4. Looks great! I have a deep desire to paint the fence around our back yard black based your outstanding example; we’ll see if that happens. Anyway, regarding the windows on your garage door. We had a similar issue with the sidelight windows at our front entrance. There was a tatty lace curtain there when we moved in, made tattier by the fact that one of our cats liked to hang from it. Lace is also not too much my style. And the curtain seemed to take up too much real estate in a pretty small foyer. So we replaced it with window film, the kind that comes in a variety of patterns and is sold on the roll. We bought ours at Lowe’s and have been super happy with it. It lets in a good amount of light without compromising privacy. My cats can’t hang from it, either.

  5. You know what could be fun for the windows? Find a way to attach those decorative sheet metal panels with the cloverleaf or union jack pattern on the inside of the glass. You could even spray paint them copper as a nod to the light fixtures you’re considering.

  6. I would just go over the windows with that frosted glass stuff. It will keep people from peeking in at your garbage pile and would like nice and neat from the outside :).

  7. Loving this look! You have a great vision. I wonder if you could cover the windows with some of that frost/film stuff that would still let light in, but it would obscure the view inside. Just a thought!

  8. You have such a good eye. It looks great! I love the flat black. I can’t wait until the fencing is finished and the chain link is gone.

  9. I see your vision! Admittedly it looks out of place now, but when you’ve got the other pieces in place it will be awesome. Here’s what I’d do with that sucker: insulate it and turn it into a hip tiny house, rent it on airbnb, and sink the proceeds into the renovation.

  10. That Carson wall mount from Rejuv makes me hate my life because I don’t have a place for that lamp.

    • Isn’t it gorgeous?? Rejuvenation does such a great job and the quality is so great. There are so many nice options, I could have done a whole roundup just from them!

  11. I would definitely do NUMBER 5 for the street side and 3 or 4 for the backyard (whichever can give off the most light).

    • Of COURSE you like the most expensive one! Ha. But I agree. I’m really feeling #4 for the back…and the price is pretty good…

  12. I love it all! Especially getting to see how bad the garage looked before you even saw the place. Question. What are these LED Edison bulbs you speak of? I need to see them!

  13. Ooh, #1 is so pretty, and reasonable too! I love the black, and can’t wait to see the chain link fence gone as well.

  14. It looks so great. And I’m super excited that we will get more exterior updated posts this summer. If you are getting electrical done for the garage make sure to get an exterior plug put in on the back of the garage so you can plug in music, additional lights, etc.

    • Yes, for sure! If I’m getting new electrical work done I always like to overdo it a little because you just NEVER KNOW. :)

  15. We did the GILA static window film in a frost for our garage windows (and bathroom windows fwiw). I love that light can come in, but you really can’t see anything through the windows (peepers won’t be able to actually see what you’re stashing).
    http://www.lowes.com/pd_457464-74130-1.0396466E7___?productId=4756797&pl=1&Ntt=window+film

    • I’ve used that stuff, too! I think it looks better from the inside where you apply it than the outside where you’d really see it in this case, so that’s the only thing that’s kind of giving me pause. That said, it’s pretty inexpensive and I already have some, so I think it’s probably worth doing…it’ll look so much better than the mess that’s there and then I can forget about it until maybe someday I can just replace the glass (or the whole door) altogether. Thanks!

  16. Love the garage black, but what was missing from this post was a sense of how it looks with the main house. Can you post a picture of the house and the garage?

    • I’ll do that for sure, Bonnie, but I *might* be intentionally keeping the demo’d mudroom out of frame for now! Too much excitement for one post! :)

  17. Fun, fun, fun!

    I think that if you are going for black to make the garage sink back visually, then you should pick a black fixture on the street side, at least.

    I know you don’t really want to hear this, but I would be worried about using interior doors on the exterior not only for insulation and water infiltration reasons, but also for the durability to the elements of the door itself, especially with pine rather than a harder wood. Maybe you can find something at an architectural salvage place.

    • Ha! You know me well. :)

      I think the doors will be fine though, really…as I mentioned, the garage is far from weather-tight so there isn’t any real concern for insulation, and the primer and paint should protect the wood from damage from the elements. I just kind of feel like getting something nicer or more typically suited for this kind of use is just a waste of money in this case, unless I was embarking on a MUCH bigger garage renovation than I’ve been planning, ya know? I don’t have any intention of trying to make this into a livable space or anything like that…just storage and maybe cover for the car in winter.

      • You may not have any problem where you live but my house, and county for that matter, is pretty rural and a big consideration around here is security. I’m not sure if there’s a difference between the interior and exterior doors in regards to how easily the glass can be busted or whether one can be kicked in easier than the other but it may be something to think about. Hope that helps!

      • I’m sure there is a difference between how easily a single-glazed window can get busted vs. an exterior double-glazed insulated one, but living in an old house in a pretty dense urban environment, I kind of have to not think about it! Every window on my house is single-glazed with fairly thin, old glass…as are exterior doors…I have a home security system, but if somebody wanted in, they wouldn’t have such a hard time. I’ll put a lock on the door but beyond that, I don’t think it makes too much sense to worry about it considering how the rest of the house and garage are.

  18. Yeah! You did it! Brilliant! Love, love, love, adore it! Are you quite sure, you don’t want to paint the house black, too? What does Anna say on that account?

    Couldn’t you turn the windows into a bit of an art project? Paint or paper a motif (right word?) on the back? Something with peeping eyes, or a series of four different colours?

    Anyhow, black! More black, please! So good!

    • Ha! House is not going black—not on my watch! But it will have black doors, window sashes, and shutters, which are all the traditional choices for Greek Revival and, from what I can tell, the original colors. Dark green for those elements would also be appropriate, but given the option…I think it’s pretty obvious what I’d pick! :)

      You’re way more exciting than me! Simple and boring is all I want for the windows! I’m so predictable.

  19. okay..you know my thoughts on the chain link…just be gone..soon….

    love the black and love the black contrasted with that pile of bricks…I’m thinking a brick walkway??
    and what if you got some chicken wire and stuck it on the inside of those windows…just clean the crap out of them and then the chicken wire could be sort of funky….just a thought…

    • I feel you on the chain link! It’s horrible.

      I gotta do an update on backyard plans…everyone poo-poo’d the pea gravel concept, it sounds like rightfully so, and I can’t find ANYONE local who does decomposed granite, so now I’m thinking….pave it all with reclaimed brick? Herringbone pattern? THAT should be fast and easy—HA!—but so pretty…

      • What’s wrong with pea gravel? It’s very common here in France and Belgium and looks great! Never had an issue with it personally…

      • I don’t have a lot of experience with it, but a lot of people brought up that it’s very hard to keep contained, that it doesn’t really compact so it’s not the greatest surface to walk on, and that it often looks good at first, but quickly sprouts lots and lots of weeds that make maintenance really difficult. They all seem like valid points! I do think it looks beautiful, but maybe not the best option for such a large space like what’s planned.

      • Decomposed gravel shouldn’t need much “doing,” but it would need to be obtained.

      • Yeah, it’s weird! It’s SO common in lots of areas of the country, but everywhere I’ve asked about it here people look at me like I have three heads or think I’m talking about something else, and nobody seems to know where to get it.

      • Reclaimed brick is beautiful. Old red house bricks are a very popular paving medium here in Australia, for those who live in old homes. They’re very charming. You can still have weed/moss issues, but nothing unmanageable and it adds to the charm. I have that paving out back, and pea gravel (or something similar, I have no idea) down the side. All from previous owners. I have to be very vigilant about weeding the gravel, which I am not so it looks like a mess. Also, it’s not just the gravel itself spreading but when you get a bunch of dirt/mulch/leaf litter or something spreading onto the gravel from elsewhere, it’s hard to remove because it’s not like you can just sweep it all up. Maybe that’s just my problem, given my side beds aren’t bordered well.
        (Other than those issues, the gravel does look lovely… perhaps in France the weeds are different or people just are used to bordering it and maintaining it properly Doorot!)

        Anyway, your idea of herringbone will look GORGEOUS. Please do that!!!! It will look so warm and lovely against that gorgeous black.

      • Thanks, Rayna! I know people will try to talk me out of it because of worries that the bricks will disintegrate and crumble, but I’ve done quite a bit of reading at this point and it seems like proper installation (lots of drainage underneath, high-quality sand between the bricks, etc) can lead to a really long-lasting paving solution. I’d actually LOVE if it grew some moss (might be too sunny there, though), but I can’t imagine the weeding could be THAT bad.

      • Try asking for stone dust at a granite quarry or granite slab manufacturer. It’s a by product of quarrying and/or cutting stone, so in upstate NY you should be able to locate it! But stone dust is usually the trade name, tell them you want it as a base for setting flagstones, that’s what stone guys think of as its normal use in my experience.

    • Do the reclaimed brick…that colour is amazing with the black

      • Definitely leaning that way! A little scared…I did some rough calculations and I think I need somewhere in the neighborhood of like 2,000 bricks!!

      • If it’s a sunny spot, you could actually put some creeping thyme seeds between the bricks. It’s low, tough, and smells awesome when you walk on it. Gives a rustic tone, but subtle enough so it’s not dirty hippy.

      • That sounds great! I wonder how well it grows here…I’ve heard mixed things but throwing down some seed and seeing what happens seems easy enough.

      • My parents did a full brick driveway and walkway when I was a kid (I remember “helping” the crew place and sand it). 17+ years later, it still looks great and is zero maintenance. We were desert climate but — even with (I assume) weeding and a disintegrating piece or two, I bet you’d love it.

  20. Looks awesome!!!

    p.s. I think you should cover the windows with blood. Sponge it on wet, and it’ll block out nosy people AND cast a rosy glow on everything inside when it’s dry.

  21. I’m curious about using flat paint for something that will need scrubbed every once in a while. Is exterior flat paint very different from the interior stuff? My entire home interior was painted with flat paint by the former owner and while it mostly looks great, in places like the bathroom where a few water drops hit it when people are drying their hands there are tons of water spots. Fingerprints and things also can’t really be scrubbed away without leaving a noticeable mark. I’m guessing the exterior stuff is different or maybe just using a dark color makes it work?
    I think this is officially my first comment but I found you about a year ago and have since gone back and read all your posts. I enjoy your blog greatly and can’t wait to see how your house and the two others turn out.

    • It really depends on the quality of the paint! Flat paint is actually apparently the most common/traditional choice for wood clapboard, often paired with a glossier finish for trim work and whatnot. That said, pretty much any latex paint will become more matte over time as it’s exposed to the elements, so sometimes people start with semi-gloss or something and in a few years it looks matte, anyway. The quality of the paint is really important for the stuff you’re describing though, particularly with a matte/flat finish—not just to make the paint job easier. A high-quality paint (like the Valspar Reserve, or the nicer Ben Moore lines, etc) will hold up well to scrubbing. I hit my walls all the time with a magic eraser to get rid of little scuffs and marks and whatnot, and it doesn’t leave any marks or anything like that. Bathrooms are usually painted eggshell or satin, but paint companies have started to make matte paints specifically for bathrooms and kitchens (Ben Moore’s is called Aura Bath and Spa) that are formulated to hold up to water/moisture exposure—it’s very nice stuff.

      Hope that helps! And thank you for the kind words! :)

      • Thank you for answering my questions. I really appreciate it. I can’t wait to see what you do next. I’m sending good DIY juju your way! :)

  22. [Mmmmmmm, Love the red doorknob :) ]
    I think this looks fabulous! I agree that having a black garage will make it recede into the background and keep the house more “front and center” I do imagine it will get quite hot inside in the summer, but a couple of roof vents can help with that.

    As for the lighting, personally I think #2. feels most authentic. It looks like it could have been there since 1920. When making design choices for my 100+ yo apartment, I either go with starkly modern, or I like to choose a design that would(could) have existed at the time it was built or at least far enough back in time that it looks like it has always been there.

  23. yas! love it.

    and where i grew up in PA – it was really popular to hang an american flag on the inside of the garage door so you could see it across all the windows (if that makes sense). maybe in the interim you could hang up a hudson bay blanket – give your rainbow comment neighbor something to chew on for awhile. ;)

  24. The black with copper will be as awesome, when it’s done, as the chainlink is horrific, now. The black siding and black door really do look awesome together.

  25. I love the last photo with the door. The black on black looks so delicious there and any of those copper light fixtures are going to look glorious. I am partial to number 1 and number 3 for around the french doors. Much like you, I am excited to see the fence go.

  26. Hey Daniel.

    Please, please don’t put those interior french doors on the outside you will very likely come to regret the decision. I live in So. Cal. land of drought and in my previous home the owners had done a bunch of stuff that should never had been done, ever. Like interior doors on the outside, melamine siding and more. Ours were installed under a covered patio and protected by the house on two sides. Even so the damp managed to penetrate the painted wood and rot right thru the 16 year old house doors. We replaced these doors with standard doors from a custom door and window company for about double what you are paying for those interior doors. We found in our area at least that the custom door and window company could provide the standard sized doors at a cheaper price then the big box stores. Plus they are dual paned (not that a garage needs that). You might want to check some of them out before going the other way. Can’t hurt to inquire.

    • I echo the concern about using interior doors. Even though you’re not putting them in a “conditioned” building (where you’re trying to keep heat in), I don’t think painting them is enough to protect them from the elements, especially in a region with serious weather.

      Here’s my concern: paint is not going to form a complete seal. You know if you buy painted cabinets, there is a disclaimer that the paint finish may ‘crack’ along the lines where different pieces of wood meet, and that this is not a “defect”. This is because the wood expands and contracts. (I’m sure that you already know this!)

      The paint may be protecting the surface of the doors, but that cracking along the joints is going to allow cold/moist/hot air to penetrate the innards of the door, and way that interior doors are constructed is not designed to stand up to that level of repeated expansion, contraction, becoming damp, drying out, etc. I think that the glue used on interior doors is not waterproof, and I fear that all the pieces that make up an interior door would just start to literally come apart.

      Sorry to be saying what you don’t wanna hear, but I would put odds on it that interior doors would not hold up well enough to have been worth the initial cost savings. Maybe you’ll hit the salvage yard jackpot and find the right pair at just the right time! Fingers crossed for that to happen! Did you see this
      post?

      “Melissa and Keye found this set of antique doors from the famed neighborhood salvage yard in Clinton Hill, Eddie’s Salvage. “Eddie truly was the nicest gentleman,” says Melissa, “He helped us look through piles and piles of giant old doors and measured many of them for us. We were lucky to find a set that was the perfect size that matches our front door opening.” (They painted their doors black. The whole apartment is black and white and warm woods. I thought of you looking at every picture. Check out the wall-mounted lamps in no. 8)

      I love the black. I love the copper (and the prospect of patination). I went back and looked for a red doorknob but couldn’t find it. Was that a leetle joke?

      • Hi hear ya, robin! I’ll think about the doors. No promises either way, but I’ll think about it!

        The knob isn’t actually red…more of an orange-y brown faux-wood-grain kinda deal. It matches the original knobs in the house that were used only on the insides of closets and the pantry door, stuff like that. I love it! It does pop nicely against the black, if I do say so myself. :)

    • Thanks, T—I’ll look into it further. My whole house (including the other garage doors!) is pretty much made entirely of painted wood, so I guess that’s more or less my thinking. However, it is valid that the wood (and construction or doors) that we talk about today is very different from that of a hundred years ago, so I’ll consider it carefully and look closely at whatever doors I do purchase before pulling the trigger. Any wood-painted surface outside requires a certain level of maintenance, but I also don’t want to be fighting a losing battle with the doors and need to replace them sooner than I’d like.

      • Daniel,

        I caution you about the doors as well. I don’t think the wood on interior doors can hold up to upstate New York winters. Plus exterior French doors don’t have to be expensive – from your friends at Lowes:

        http://www.lowes.com/Windows-Doors/Doors/Patio-Doors/_/N-1z0wkj7/pl?cm_sp=Millwork-_-WindowsDoors|PopularCat-_-Other|Patio_Doors&cm_cr=Doors-_-Web+Activity-_-Doors+TF-_-SC_Doors_TopFlexible_Area-_-10566059_5_pl#!&N%5B%5D=1z0wkj7&N%5B%5D=1z11x5x&Ns=p_product_price%7C0&page=1

      • Hmmmmm…I know this might seem silly, but I really don’t want to throw anything steel/fiberglass/etc. on the garage…I just feel like it’ll stick out like a sore thumb, and it looks like the “divided light” aspect is purely decorative, which I also don’t love the idea of. I’m sure I could find wood exterior doors (although it looks like all the ones at Lowe’s are steel or fiberglass), but I’m not sure how much they’d really differ aside from being double-paned, which isn’t a concern here considering the garage doesn’t have to worry about heat loss or insulation.

        I don’t know! The entire exterior of my house is painted wood, and I still kind of feel like with proper upkeep there’s no reason a solid pine painted door wouldn’t be OK. The salesperson at Lowe’s agrees, for what it’s worth…not that I necessary look to them as the final authority, but ya know. I’ve checked them out in person and they seem totally nice and solid. I also kind of feel like going with something like what I linked to originally isn’t such a huge risk…if they don’t wear well over the years, it’s an under $400 mistake and I’d still be left with a modern standard-sized opening, so I could always swap them out with something better suited if need be. Half of what I do is sort of an experiment, so I kind of want to try it and see what happens! It’s just a garage, after all.

  27. I kind of want you to use brightly-colored, enameled lights from Barnlight Electric. Or even white… For some reason I like the idea of a candy coating of enamel against the rough, black walls better than copper, unless you keep it bright and shiny. OK? Thanks!

  28. Btw, other then the doors I love the concept!

  29. Oh so glad to know what that paint is since I want to paint our carriage house that same way, except with a rust red door. Y’know that barn in High Falls? That sort of thing. I stopped by one morning to see if you were there with the intention of finding out about the paint, but there was just a bunch of guys out there working away.. .no Daniel in sight. Your place looks really INCREDIBLE, at least what I saw of it before the fence went up. The copper lantern idea makes my paranoid self a little nervous, due to copper being within reach of folks who might like to have it for their own. A-hem. Just thinking about it, z’all.

    • Bummer, Suzen, I would have loved to say hi and talk shop! Yeah…I got about halfway through painting this sucker, and then took some neighborhood “kids” (who aren’t really kids…rotating supply of 20-ish year olds) up on their offer to finish the job working hourly. Turns out I had Lyme disease, so probably a good thing that I listened to my body and handed it off to them. I’m feeling a lot better now and doing touch-ups on stuff they missed, but overall it was money well spent! And I don’t mind giving a little work to people who could use it.

      Copper makes me a little paranoid too, but my experience with my house has been that the more cared for/finished it looks, the less inclined people have been to mess with it, which is heartening! I figure if it’s reasonably out of reach and attached to an active electrical fixture, hopefully the hardcore scrappers will pass…but yeah, it’s kind of a risk. I hear ya.

      • Wow, Daniel, I just read this comment and I’m so sorry you had Lyme disease. And really glad you took some time off to recover. That stuff is no fun at all, at all. Hope you feel better soon and please take care of yourself!

  30. If the goal is for the garage to disappear, I would keep the lights black and plain. I don’t like any windows in garages. They are a pain to keep clean. I like outbuildings to be sturdy and closed. That’s why they are outside, good for storage and cars. Just my opinion.

    • Ha! “Sturdy and closed” is just never going to be this garage, honestly. If I wanted that, I’d demolish it and build a new one! It’s fine, though, and I actually think it’s cool and charming that it has that 6-over-6 double-hung window on it. They don’t make em like that anymore! :)

  31. wow. love love love the black garage… and if you fixed it up as a studio, i would rent it!

    i love reading your blog and have since the columbia U days. whats sad for me is that i live in a building (four plex) that is CRYING for reno and the landlord does NOTHING … the porch is sagging and the bottom front step is ready to fall off and the front door has not been painted in the TEN years i have lived here and it was already bad when i moved in. he has gutted and rebuilt the other apartments – illegally no permits (many load bearing walls are gone, blocked exits etc etc he replaced all the furnances himself and he is not a plumber) my apt is the only one in the original config and my guess is that its holding the entire building up.

    i have fixed up my apt inside and created a secret garden in the back (weeds when i moved in) and try to ignore what i see when i walk in and out of the front door (i have an exit in the back thank goodness when the step finally falls down).

    so that is why i lust after what you are doing – the fence and the garage, etc. so satisfying seeing your progress.

    i have dreams of buying my own little house some day … seeing your work is inspiring!

    • Aw, thanks! And hey—improving and maintaining your space is a big deal, for what it’s worth. I found that the landlords of my old building in Brooklyn were less inclined renovate when things were kept up well, but quick to do it if the apartment looked bad…even if it had all the same original detail just below the surface of grime and bad paint jobs. But anyway, be careful! You do have tenant rights to know that you’re living in a safe place, with proper forms of egress and all of that. Furnaces and load-bearing walls are NOT things that should be messed around with. You may be able to make an anonymous call about the property to the code enforcement officer or the building safety division in your city to come take a look at things, if only for a little peace of mind. :)

  32. As I was scrolling through the outside fixtures, my heart LEPT at number 5. At that moment, I just knew it would be the most money. Breathtaking amount really, but ohhhhh the lines and metals… le sigh

    • It is expensive, for sure, but man—Rejuvenation’s quality is top-notch, and I believe they still manufacture everything in the U.S.—no small feat in today’s economy! I can’t afford it for myself, but I don’t feel like the price is unwarranted, you know?

      AND IT’S JUST SO PRETTY

  33. It’s like black balm for the soul. And I’m sorry to write this, but I can’t picture it with any light besides the Carson Straight Arm Wall Mount.

  34. Love love love! It’s going to look amazing. Black fences and garages all the way!

  35. Looks great! Coincidentally, I just did a blog about staining our privacy fence black. Must be the thing. The Rejuvenation fixture is the clear winner.

  36. Yep, sorry, I’m not feeling this one, but it doesn’t matter. ☺ I’m sure by the time you get the whole yard done you’ll have convinced me.

    • Well, I have something to look forward to, then! Wouldn’t be a black paint post without some healthy dissent!

  37. Love the black, what I don’t love is the trim in the same sheen. I think it would look bangin in a satin!

    • Typically I’d agree, but I stand by this decision here! The trim on the garage is super modest—I think it looks better when taken visually as a whole rather than trying to highlight any particular feature. But that’s just me. :)

  38. I like the idea of the cornstarched fabric in the door windows, right now they just look…sad. And I scrolled though those lights and said “Oh, #5 is NICE. Nice. I hope he gets that one, because that light is serious business…it’s HOW MUCH?” I should just know by now; if I like it, it’s out of my budget.

  39. Could you do that cling frosting film on your windows and may put in those snap-in wooden dividers painted to match the door? The windows seem kind of empty to me–and I think those little pane dividers would be nice. That way you get the light in the garage if you want to work in there when it’s cold or wet, but nobody can see your clutter.

    My house has an all-glass garage door –which I have never seen–it is an attached garage and you go through it to go in the Kitchen door so that light from outside is nice, but seeing into the garage is kind of odd–I think this was done by my landlords, who usually have beautiful taste but the garage doors are certainly unique. And very heavy.

    • Hmm, I don’t know! Usually I’m not a fan of faux-muntins (just too fakey…we had them on our windows in the house I grew up in and little 8 year old me took the ones out of my bedroom windows, ha!), but it might help sort of tie the newer door into the old window on the side in a way that wouldn’t be so bad. Kind of doubt I could find stock ones in the right side, though…

  40. Love love love love love this garage! So black. So awesome.

  41. Call me crazy, but with the circular window over the garage door already I’d do two smaller fixtures over the garage door. One balanced to each side of the window at the same height you were planning. The balance would be great. LOVE the black!

    • I’ve considered whether it would look weird to have something below the circle window…but the only other thing I could come up with was putting two smaller sconces on either side of the garage door…I think that would look a little more natural, you know? But this is the fun part…tossing around ideas…nothing set in stone. :)

  42. How do you do all of this? I really think you are a wizard!! I love your little black garage. You can do no wrong in my book. Dying to see your backyard with the new fence up. Oh, and I miss Bluestone Cottage.
    But I know you are running your ass off with three houses to work on. Cheers!!

    • I’m not a wizard! I had a little help with this one…I got Lyme disease (as if renovating three houses and running for public office wasn’t fun fun fun enough!) so I tackled about half and then handed it off to some guys from the hood who needed the cash, and I needed to take my feverish ass to bed! Odd for me to hire something out that I can technically do, but in this case…worth it.

  43. How dare you talk to me about our garage when LOOK! Dude. ;)

  44. For the larger street side lamp consider implementing something like the InControl Home Automation app. It may be a bit sophisticated for a garage, but it would be lovely to flick the light on from your phone as you are coming up the street (or have it deal with the timer for you).

    • I’ve thought about stuff like that, but it seems so tech-y and I’d always forget! Good ole timer switch never did me wrong, though…

  45. Ha-those neighbors of yours with their underwhelming enthusiasm. I’m sure they will get it when everything is finished.

    • They’re coming around :)

      • The neighbours’ comments totally cracked me up. They love you secretly!!

      • Luckily they’re not so secretive about it! I have really great neighbors. They think I’m crazy, and then they’re like…”ohhhhhhhhhhhh, OK, I like that now.” :)

  46. Yessssss! Love.It.

    Do you do the thing I do when I paint something a crazy colour and Im scared I wont like it halfway through? ? I walk away,close my eyes and turn around and open! Like Im doing a big reveal.To myself. OK maybe not lol nevermind :)

  47. Love it! vote for 1 and 7 =) Black is a very nice color, you will turn it into a paradise of style.

  48. I think it looks great! I’m moving into an apartment in SF next week, a cool, very old, not-so-updated apartment. In an attempt to make the kitchen and bathroom look purposefully vintage, not just old, I am having the top portion of the rooms painted chalkboard and Benjamin Moore Raccoon Fur respectively. My painter said “I’ve been doing this for 16 years and no one has ever wanted to paint a kitchen black. How about burgundy?” Yeah…no. Can’t wait to see the results!

    • Burgundy!! How hip. Ha! Go with your gut. It’ll be great, and if it’s not, it’s just paint!

  49. Oh my god DANIEL! This looks amazing. Straight up insanely effing magical! As always love watching the progress of the house – your posts are always a pleasure to read.

    Keep up the good work. We are all with you!

  50. I love how the garage looks! Brilliant Black, not Brilliant White!

    I vote for lamps No. 4 or 6, probably 4 after seeing the price of No. 6 . . .

  51. So cool! I would frost the garage door glass with that spray frosting product, quick, easy, effective and would look great with the black!

    • Have you used that stuff? I remember looking into it a long time ago and the reviews were kinda bad, so I never tried it. I’d love to hear about it if you’ve done it!

  52. Well, if no one has stolen your cooper drainpipes, maybe they won’t steal a copper light. I agree #4 is beautiful and would look wonderful. Maybe you could rig it up the alarm system, too? This is looking wonderful, Daniel, and I’m looking forward to seeing the rest.

    • Copper drainpipes, HA! I ain’t the queen of england over here! Crappy aluminum’s all I’ve got. :)

      • Yeah, maybe they went long bye-bye a looong time ago. But your neighbors look out for you so it should be ok. I’ll bet you’re the topic of many a dinnertime and cross the fence conversation. You have enriched their lives as well as raised their property values. Take care with that Lyme, OMG. And you ran for political office? How did I miss that. A coworker retired to a tiny town near the NC border where she and her husband fixed up a beautiful old Craftsman. She ran and got a seat on the town council and was able to accomplish quite a bit. Good luck next time!

      • Thanks, Cindi! I don’t know that my house ever had copper downspouts…I think the originals were those large, kind of corrugated steel ones—which seems to have been standard around here. As I need to replace downspouts, I’d like to replace them with steel barn gutters (similar style as the old) rather than the more common stock aluminum ones. Copper’s just never going to happen…too much $ and it’s just asking for trouble!

        I haven’t posted about the political stuff since I’m waiting to hear if I’m on the ballot, but yes! I’m running for Alderman of my ward, which is a seat on the city’s common council of 9 people. It’s exciting and scary but the neighborhood needs a good advocate in City Hall so I’m stepping up and throwing my hat in the ring! There’s a lot going on, that’s for sure. :)

      • Ooops, assumed you lost?

      • Ha, nope! It’s still going! The primary is in September…I should find out if I’m on the ballot in the next few days, pending review of my petition signatures by the board of elections. Should be an interesting summer!

  53. You’ve given the old garage a coat of dignity. I love that the door and trim are the same colour as the rest. Can’t wait to see it with the herringbone brick and some greenery :)

  54. OH. MY. GOSH. I absolutely LOVE it. It looks so fricken good! The matte black was a perfect choice. Love your lighting options, as well.

  55. I want to second a couple of things: Suzen is right on with the concern over an audacious, beautiful copper fixture hanging out on a dark-ish side street. I vote putting the expensive stuff on the yard side of the garage, originally mostly because that’s where you’ll see it more yourself (if you’re going to drop that kind of cash, it should be where you can enjoy it most!), but then also because it won’t be exposed to the street for people to be tempted. Also, would you consider a different lighting configuration on the street side at all? Like Alli, I feel like putting it directly under that window would make it a bit awkward. If you’re using LED bulbs, two or three lights instead of one wouldn’t be that much more of an electric suck and provide a bit more in terms of safety lighting.
    Overall, I *love* the concept of this backyard…maybe even better with the herringbone brick idea! You could put that low maintenance thyme in the cracks. At my house in Colorado, it does a great job of blocking out most weeds.
    And I totally appreciate that you take the “crowd sourcing opinions” so graciously. I think it’s part of what makes your comments section still a lively place to be, unlike a lot of other blogs I read. :)

    • Yeah, I’m still tossing around the lighting orientation…sconces on either side of the door might be a better option. I feel like it’s a little more traditional “garage” and maybe a little less “barn,” if that makes sense to anyone other than me, haha.

      • Yeah, it totally makes sense – I thought about suggesting it, but it didn’t seem right with the set of fixtures you chose. You just might have to do another round-up of lighting options…poor you!

      • Ha! I’m so lazy with roundups. They take me forever to make! (spoiler…I just ordered the Harbor Sconces from RH so now it’s a front-or-back debate. Now I’m leaning front! I’m so indecisive.

  56. there is a whole house painted this color (black) in Kinderhook NY close to where i live, and the front door is painted an almost-yellow-electric-acid-green color, it actually looks so amazing, and helps the house look more modern and less goth, iykwim? It is similar to the way grey and yellow complement/play off each other. I bet that would look great on one or both of the garage doors, and the chartreuse and future turquoise patina on your future copper light fixture would be really pretty together. Enjoy your summer!

    • Nice! I love that kind of thing on a house. I don’t think it would do the garage a lot of favors, but I love it for other applications! :)

  57. i also have to add, i think the garage looks great but it is very “yang” which is maybe why you say you “will” love it after it grows on you. maybe add a little “ying” like a bright pink climbing clematis, or something … i am sure you have heard the theory in decorating not to get too serious, i think the garage needs something whimsical, maybe even a colorful wreath, or something like that, to make you happy when you look at it!

    • Oh, absolutely! The whole point is for it to recede and provide a nice backdrop, so plants are a MUST. Love a climber, MAYBE even a vine (GASP)…it needs to be softened up and look more like part of the landscape. This is just the beginning…all in due time…:)

  58. Annual vines growing against the newly painted garage would be gorgeous against the dark color. Something like scarlet runner beans or hyacinth bean vine would look amazing, especially the blackish/purple of the hyacinth bean.

    • Thank you for the recs! I’ve been thinking the same thing. I’m *almost* even tempted to let some virginia creeper loose on it…but I feel like I’d wildly regret that decision…but it does turn a pretty shade of red in the fall…

      I’ll look into your recs, though! I’m sure they’re much better. :)

      • Nooooo virginia creeper. It will take over everything and you’ll be hacking away at it and cursing yourself within a few years.

      • I know, I know! I already battle it every summer! It was a passing thought, I swear. Never mind. Forget it said anything. Ha!

      • Do NOT do a trumpet vine. I inherited one with my house & has taken over my whole shitty back porch. I am sure it will take over the deck-with-supports that I plan to put in after the porch comes down next year. The blooms fall off daily & need to be raked/swept up daily. It is the ultimate dirty hippie vine.

      • Noted! Thanks!

      • The scarlet runner beans are nice because the vines grow like crazy as soon as they sprout, and the blooms are really attractive. Plus, the beans are great raw or cooked. It’s pretty fuss free, and a mere four seeds can produce a massive tangle of vine up to 10 feet tall and several feet across. I love mine- they cover up a disgusting yard next door rather attractively. The hyacinth is a good grower too, but not as massive as the scarlet runner. But it’s so attractive and unusual looking, and is a real stunner. None of these options are harmful to the dogs if they decide to sample (I have two of my own, so know how that goes) and the nice part is they come down at the end of the summer and won’t cause you any grief or damage. They’ll grow wherever there’s support for them, so you could train them to go anywhere. Pretty much anything would look spectacular and vibrant against that garage, though. It looks fantastic.

      • Also, scarlet runner beans are the beans whose leaves immobilize bed bugs.
        http://phenomena.nationalgeographic.com/2013/04/09/can-we-fake-leaves-that-stab-bed-bugs-in-the-feet/

  59. While I love all the copper options, I worry about copper theft. The house down the block (and I do not live in a dodgy neighborhood) had a fire, and while the house was less secure, the entire! house worth of plumbing was stolen – all copper, of course. The neighbors think that someone drove up in broad daylight in a vehicle that looked ‘contractor-ish’ and the thieves just waltzed in like they were supposed to be there.

    I’d do a pair of sconces – the industrial cage ones – on the street side on either side of the round window (and I’d highlight that window – so cute!) and a small similar light by the door and save the big dramatic statement piece for the seating area on the private side of the garage.

    Also – outside french doors, please. It’s not the insulation that’s the issue, it’s the construction. Inside door are just too light weight and I think the joints are not up to the moisture they would be subject to.

  60. Hah “paint it rainbow” ;-) I, for one, am a huge fan of the new black garage! It looks fab, Daniel!
    Just want to add that we have the copper light (#1) on the front of our house & love it. It’s been a year & the patina is awesome. When I crave the blingy copper tone again, I rub a cut lemon half all over it. It’s weird. It works ;-)
    Can’t wait to see more!

    • That’s great to hear! I had some concerns about the quality since I can’t see it in the store and it’s relatively inexpensive (all things considered…not that it’s exactly cheap), so thank you for chiming in! Much appreciated!

  61. a lone vote for number 7 here! it just feels in keeping with the subtle, patina-ed vibe of the garage and a little less trendy than the rest? LOVE how matte black makes the texture of worn out things look so beautiful. painting all my shitty stuff with matte black spray paint is my #1 champagne-taste-beer-wallet trick.

  62. Hi Daniel,

    Looks amazing. I love it. I’m also planning on painting the siding black on our house. It’s nice to get an idea of what it will look like. I’m working on a budget, so I chose this wall mounted barn light which doesn’t look great in the finish it came in. I just spray painted the outside of it in high gloss black and it looks fantastic. I originally was thinking of a copper or brass colour, but decided on black as I want the front door to stand out, not the lighting. Here is the light I chose….
    http://www.amazon.com/Canarm-BL14CWS-Weather-1-Bulb-Ceiling/dp/B003TQLO4I/ref=pd_sim_60_3?ie=UTF8&refRID=0JQS5F4WY3KRSKK3PN3K
    Btw, I’m using a salvaged antique front door with a large window and mail slot. I’m either stripping it to natural wood (if the wood is nice) or painting it a leaf green which is already on the interior part of the door. The door looks like this. (colour and style)
    http://images.nymag.com/guides/fallpreview/2009/restaurants/vesuvio090831_560.jpg
    Can’t wait to see what else you do. Really enjoying the progress your making on your house and loving all of your choices.

    Take care,
    Jill

    • That light looks great! I bet the black looks amazing. Such a good price point, too! I don’t know why I always forget amazon has stuff like that…

      That door!!! Gorgeous! Stripping paint is a paaaaiiiin but if there’s nice oak under there or something, it would be nice to restore! But also nothing wrong with just painting it, either!

  63. Swoonnnn the garage looks wonderful!!! I fan of the window film that makes the window look frosted.
    It is very handsome looking and it is CHEAP!! You should do it!! http://www.bing.com/images/search?q=fROSTED+WINDOW+FILM&view=detailv2&&&id=B5C962A7B89B7D4747C9136EEBF1A810ED32B288&selectedIndex=1&ccid=BWSX%2fF0U&simid=608023402434464213&thid=JN.CyEyu%2fv00KY%2bdO3bALO92g&ajaxhist=0

  64. I absolutely love the black! It turned out fantastic.

  65. Love!

  66. Wow! It doesn’t even look like a garage anymore!

  67. LOVE the Black!!!! Classy and very Sassy!!! And light number 5!! Heart Eyes for sure!

  68. I liked the look of the garage as it was white – classic and traditional. BUT I really like it painted black. It looks very elegant and you are so correct, it does fade to the back. Great choice! I’ve really enjoyed reading your blog! So many great ideas! Thanks.

  69. Thanks for showing us the old photos of the garage pre-real estate agent fix up. With the intense sunlight on the day google photographed the garage in all its dilapidatedness, they look almost like paintings rather than photographs. It looks great in those photos! But I’m sure it will look great (and actually be more functional) when you get done with it.

  70. Hi Daniel, I hope I’m not giving you the same info someone else already may have. My husband bought these LED Edison lights for us and I love them! He said the Saffron lighting brand is more of a clear bulb than some other brands; that was a big deal for me, I didn’t want it too yellowish.

    http://www.amazon.com/Saffron-Lighting-SW-30554-2700K-Filament/dp/B00S8TSOPS/ref=sr_1_1?&ie=UTF8&qid=1436810572&sr=8-1&keywords=saffron+led+edison&pebp=1436810577561&perid=1SRFDQHA7JAXQ5R38DE0

    And this is a link to one of my light fixtures sporting the schmancy bulb. In the comments I show it turned off.

    https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=795945437180022&set=a.500474690060433.1073741826.100002937194504&type=1&theater

    Good luck with the rest of your projects, everything is looking great as always! And I’m totally coveting that most expensive copper light, btw. Thanks a lot for that.

  71. Try window film for the garage windows. It looks like etched glass, they cut it to size, and it goes on with water. I used it on a French door in my house and its great! Can’t remember website, but it comes up when you google it.

  72. The black looks AWESOME!
    I used the spray frosted glass paint for an existing old door to a new half bath in our very old house. I laid the door flat and meticulously taped around the glass and sprayed very thin coats and it worked PERFECTLY. And it has held up beautifully. Looks great from both sides. For garage windows I’d go at them with abandon from the inside with no tape! YOLO!
    Check out Bodil Jane on Instagram. She drew with a white paint pen on windows for privacy and it’s amazing. I’m thinking of doing it on the upper half of a bathroom window that has a simple linen half curtain. (And pretending I live in Amsterdam.)
    Love your blog!

    • thank you! You don’t happen to remember the brand you used, do you? Either way, it’s helpful to hear a review—I’ve always looked at that stuff but worried it wouldn’t look good or cover evenly or be durable, etc.

  73. Hey Daniel. Love love love your blog, however, I am still getting dragged all over the place by ads on the side and bottom of your posts (I’m using chrome). It does detract from the reading experience, but does not deter! I just thought I’d let you know that it’s still a problem.

    • Thanks for letting me know, SPT. I think I finally figured out what the issue is, so we’re working on resolving it ASAP. Gimme a day or two but definitely let me know if the problem persists after that!!

  74. I have the answer for your doors. Have you discovered http://www.thedoorjamb.net yet? It’s probably a half hour from you. It’s a total jem…a huge building stuffed full of doors, windows and other cool stuff. It’s like an architectureal salvage shop but all the stuff is new – overruns and the like. Amazing. Our remodel was totally upgrade when we discovered it. And the prices are so good. The family that owns it are super smart and helpful. For example, we had a door that swung the wrong way. We asked for some help to fix it expecting to get some instruction. But instead they told us to bring in the door and they rehung it so it swings the other way. Genius.

    Make a point to pick up a sandwich and have lunch at the nearby Ashokan reservoir. Beautiful.

    • Oh yeah, I’m at the door jamb all the time! I always want to steal that deaf white boxer…we have a bond! I’ve actually bought quite a few things from there in the past couple of years for various projects…

      I did poke around there for doors, but stuff was pretty expensive (way less than new, obviously, but exterior doors are really spendy!) and none of it was really what I’m looking for anyway! I really, really just want super simple wood french doors…I know everyone and their mother seems to disagree with me, but I kinda still don’t see the issue with the existing plan to just use interior ones and paint them! Honestly the investment is not that big and because they’re a standard size, if I really do need to replace them down the road it isn’t such a big deal. I feel like I’ll regret it if I don’t at least try it out and see, but I really think it will be fine!

  75. I’d love to see some large leaf chartruce plants against that black mini barn. And some firey red orange spikey plants. Day Lily’s would be most carefree but there’s lots you could do if you’re into tending a garden.

    • Yeah, I gotta figure out what will grow well! There’s a fair amount of sun…I like gardening but realistically I know I’m not great at keeping up with anything high-maintenance…I feel like it needs a climber on the side but most of the stuff I can see looking super good are also kind of invasive and potentially sort of evil…clematis?

  76. Ooo I love it!
    And I love how you said you kept walking across the street to see how it was looking — I totally do that too. :)
    If you want a really cheap temporary fix for some added privacy to your glass windows (goodbye old curtains) I’ve put up dollar store, easy-remove, clear contact paper on our front door’s window while we were renting, and it works great! You can’t see anything through it, but it lets light in.

  77. I’m pretty sure I paid for your paint when I did my upper bedrooms, downstairs and hallway in Valspar Reserve. I used to be a Sherwin Williams customer and would not have made the switch without your reviews.

    So your faith in Daniel’s commercial pull has not been misplaced, Lowe’s!

    • Ha, that’s nice to hear! I assume if you did that many spaces, you must like the paint, but did you like it?? I’m always curious to hear what other people think about this stuff!

      • I did! It’s always a bug to pick out the right shade of white, but I settled on Swiss Coffee in my kitchen and dining room and love it. It plays nicely with my new white IKEA cabinets AND my stained woodwork. My son also picked out a nice dark blue (can’t remember the name) for his room and I was very pleased with A.) the coverage, and B.) the richness of color. Come to think of it, I felt the same way about black trim paint in my room.

        So yeah, it was thick paint with rich color and good coverage—which makes me extremely happy. I hate putting on multiple coats. And with the folks at my Lowe’s being pleasant, friendly people, I doubt I’ll stray from them now that I’ve entered into this meaningful relationship. In short: I endorse your endorsement!

      • Yay! That’s great to hear. I’m glad it worked out! :)

  78. I have a random off topic question. Did you ever hang the swing door to the laundry room?

  79. Love your blog. Love the black garage. I live in an 1950’s ranch. At the moment I’m staining all the brick a charcoal color and am about to paint the siding dark gray. I was considering using the Valspar Reserve line for the exterior. I just painted an interior room using it and loved it. I’m just curious how you think it has held up in your past uses of the exterior paint.

    • Thanks, Brandi! Sounds like your house is looking great!!

      Granted it’s only been about a year, but the paint over at the cottage has held up perfectly! No chipping, flaking, anything like that—we were OK on prep but definitely could have been more thorough (we didn’t wipe down the house like I did here), did not prime, and I have no problems to report! I wouldn’t hesitate to use it again (well, I guess that’s probably clear from the garage, haha). I’ll most likely use it for the exterior of my own house when the time comes for that!

  80. after reading comments, now I understand the long lag between posts: Lyme disease, three homes to renovate AND running for office? damn, Daniel, do you sleep? are you feeling better?

    Agreeing with the horde here re not attracting petty thieves with a gorgeous, eminently steal-able light fixture in a side alley…

    • I don’t sleep enough! This summer’s been REALLY nuts, and that’s not even all of it…I’m pretty tuckered out and just trying to keep up with everything right now. Never enough hours in the day!

      And yeah…its a full street with houses on it and everything, not an alley, but I definitely hear you! Pretty sure I’m going to do two sconces on either side of the garage door instead, and in a material that won’t be so tempting. :)

  81. Gorgeous! I bet pics don’t do it justice! As someone mentioned, there may be a dust/dirt issue with the flat paint, but still the right choice likely. Gorgeous!! And here I am stuck scared to paint just one door black! LOL
    Since I’m here, and saw your twitter about sheets, believe it or not I still like walmart’s comfort classics, Mostly cotton, some poly, 400 count. Trick I use is to wash/dry them several times in hot water before first use. They get better and better with each wash, so trick yourself into doing it often at first. Every day if possible for a while. Good Luck! OH… only other great sheets I’ve had I bought at a bed/mattress store…go figure!

  82. Maxim lighting has one identical to number 1 in bronze at HALF the price. It’s called Empire Bronze 35003EB. I also found a couple of the others by google shopping “cheap modern outdoor wall sconces.”

  83. You need something with a bit of shine for the outdoor light, I think 1 or 7, also what about the frosted contact window covering for now on those front garage windows? has to be better than those creepy ghost curtains

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