Signs, Colours & Inspiration of Summer

June 28th, 2012 | Comments »

This week I wanted to take more of a visual approach to the blog… provide a few signs, colours & inspiration of summer. We also would love to know what summer means to you… what colours, smells, signs all say summer. (Now that it’s officially here.)

Time to hit the waterways…

 

The waterways in Ontario and throughout Canada provide many interesting colours. Rocks, greenery, water and the vessels traveling them can provide numerous points of inspiration.

One of our famous locks on the Trent/Severn waterway.

 

Hitting the water ways is something that Canadians from coast to coast will be doing throughout the summer. Being on the water can provide inspiration of many kinds.

Traveling the Canadian countryside

 

Taking time to travel our vast country by train is another fantastic way to experience the bold and beautiful colours throughout the country.

Water is always an inspiration!

 

Who can say No to time sitting by the water? Blue skies, sunsets and and a lot of activity.

Let’s hit the beach!

 

Anything more to say… it’s time for the beach!

Can you smell the coals burning?

Grill time is always a good time… a definite summer MUST!

Who doesn’t love a summer flip flop?

 

And I think for me FLIP FLOPS = summer! Spring hits and the count down is on for when we can permanently move into the flip flop zone. So many colours, styles and patterns! Love it!

Now we want to know… what reminds you of summer! Colours, foods, places… let us know. We’d LOVE to hear from you!

Summer Painting 101…

June 21st, 2012 | Comments »

 Right Paint + A Few Tips = Great Outdoor Projects

Paint is the easiest way to add oomph! to the exterior of your home.  Whether you choose to introduce a new palette or simply refresh the existing colour, the outcome will be the same: a revitalized home and improved curb appeal.

Painting is also one of the few home improvement jobs that can be mastered by even novice DYI’ers. The key to success is to avoid certain painting ‘faux pas’ and doing your prep work. Here’s what you need to know.

Choose the right paint & colour

1) Consider your surroundings when choosing exterior colours. Have a close look at your home – the bricks, the mortar and the siding, as well as the architectural style.

2) Also keep in mind how your house will blend in or stand out from other homes on the street. A common approach is to harmonize with existing colours and then use bolder character enhancing accents – adding these hues on smaller surfaces, like doors, trim and shutters can bring the pop you’re looking for.

3) Exterior paints are available in acrylic – latex (water-based) and alkyd (oil based) formulas. Both are fade-resistant and long-lasting. PARA’s Ultra 100% Acrylic Latex Exterior paint comes in semi-gloss and velvet finishes, and the Ultra Exterior Alkyd paint is available in semi-gloss and gloss finishes.

Sheen, remember that glossy finishes accentuate flaws. One popular method is to use velvet on wall surfaces, and semi-gloss or gloss on trim, railings, eaves and doors.

When To paint

The best time to paint is under the following conditions:

  • The temperature is between 15C and 25C and has been for 24 hours.
  • If it’s too hot to touch, it’s too hot to paint.
  • Humidity is low to moderate with no chance of rain.
  • Winds are low to non-existent.

How To Paint

For best results, follow these steps:

1.       CLEAN AND SAND

Ensure proper paint adhesion by sanding wood surfaces with 80 – 120 grit sandpaper for vertical surfaces, and 60 – 80 grit sandpaper for horizontal ones. For metal, roughen the surface with metal-grade sandpaper. Wipe surfaces down before painting.

2.       PATCH

Repair any holes with filler or caulking.

3.       PAINT IN THE CORRECT ORDER

Start from the side of the house that’s in the shade. Paint from top down, starting with gutters, fascias and eaves, then walls or siding, then windows, sills and doors. Tackle trim, downpipes and the foundation last. PARA Paints recommends a primer where applicable, and two top coats for maximum protection and durability.

4.       WORK AT A STEADY PACE

Don’t be overwhelmed by the scale of your project. Pace yourself. There is no rule that says you can’t break the job down into several smaller jobs and tackle them over the course of a few months, or even a season.

Just remember your number one source of information in making sure you have what you need and what will get the job done correctly is your local paint retailer. Color Company staff are here to help guide you and assist with any questions you may have.

Eco-friendly painting tips

  • Save leftover paint for furniture and craft projects.
  • Drop off leftover paint at a participating home-improvement store, salvage shop or municipal household waste depot.
  • Put dry, empty paint cans in your blue bin for recycling.
  • Choose from PARA Paints low – VOC Elite or Ultra latex collections.

Staining Time… Are you ready?

June 15th, 2012 | Comments »

With sunny and dry days ahead, many have begun thinking about their staining projects. Fences, decks and windows & doors just to name a few.  We thought we’d take the time to take a deeper look at stains and the great Sikkens product we carry at Color Company.

At Color Company we’re pleased to be able to offer you a strong stain product such as Sikkens, it’s high end finishes offer nothing less than the best.  With products of the most superior quality Sikkens finishes provide any wood with a unique appearance, superior durability and outstanding performance.

Sikkens offers a choice of  Translucent, Semi Transparent and Solid stains for your projects.  Depending on the type of project you’re working on you may have a smaller choice due to some finishes/colours only being suited for a particular product or type of wood.  If you’re unsure of your choices or where to start we’re happy to help.  Drop into any of our stores and we’d be glad to get you on your way.  Here’s a quick overview of the colours Sikkens finishes offer:

Here are a few Do’s and Do Not’s when it comes your staining projects:

DO

  • apply stain between the temperatures of 10-35 degrees celcius  (temperatures should be consistent for three days prior… if temps drop above or below the range for one of three days prior it could effect the final outcome.)
  • stir stain well before applying
  • saturate all end grains, nail holes, cavities and cracks in the wood
  • maintain wet edges to prevent lap marks
  • apply stain in direction of wood grain

DON’T

  • Do not apply stain in direct sunlight (late afternoon or dusk might be a great option if you’re not an early riser)
  • Do not apply stain when a surface is too hot to touch
  • Do not apply stain when dew, rain or frost is present or expected within 5 hrs
  • Do not thin the stain
  • Do not apply stain when moisture content of the wood is greater than 18%

Staining is a great way to bring out natural grains and keep the natural colour, if that’s what you’re looking for.  Though for those projects that you’re looking for a paint like finish then your choices of solid stains are definitely the way to go. Regardless of the direction… Color Company has just the product, finish and colour you’ll need.

Here’s a SMART TIP to get you on you’re way: It is always recommended  to perform a colour test on a sample of wood being used in the project.  And remember to apply the number of coats required so you can see what the finished product will result in.

Good Luck!