When we bought this house I didn't love a lot of the
things about the outdoor space but I knew when the time came to start
thinking about the backyard me & the man would think of something. I
knew a few things...I was not ripping out the concrete slab, I liked
the little rocks embedded in it and wanted to see that in whatever I
did, I wanted muted neutral color and some kind of pattern of interest.
The harlequin pattern has always been one of my favs
& can be very elegant depending on the colors you decide to use.
After cleaning the slab with stain remover and hosing it
down, I let it dry overnight. There is not a big chose in stain colors
seemed to have what I was looking for. I purchased Behr
concrete stain in semi-transparent (to show the rocks) sun baked clay
(the brown/red color)& desert sand(the beige/taupe color). I
bought a gallon of each because that is all Home Depot has..yikes! This
project was ALLOT of measuring but I figured that I wanted even sized
squares either 1/2 or whole, no in-between and I wanted them set going
across to try to make the small patio appear grander.
After too much division...my worst nightmare;( I came up
with 24" x 24" inch squares & I made my stencil out of a cardboard
box so it would last. I also thought I might do a black 4"x 4" in
between all the squares in black exterior paint to make it pop but the
jury is still out on that as of now.
I taped the entire thing off by using a marker (light
colored) around the stencil and then going around and taping over the
lines. This process went pretty quick! So satisfying to look at this big
correct grid that I created..."oh how he will be surprised that I did
it without his help"...(insert evil laugh here;).
I painted the light sand color first with a foam roller
on a wooden extension so my back would not break. This stain is like
painting with chicken broth. I had to be extremely careful but I got the
hang of it. No pics of the desert sand because basically I was too
filthy to touch my camera. I took all the tape off when the second color
was still a bit tacky and went around with a small foam brush to touch
up the edges.
Definitely one of my favorite home
projects. Here it is as of this morning. Crazy what a little soap, paint
& imagination can do. The darker lines is just where I pulled off
the tape and it shows the natural concrete underneath. I love how it
looks. Natural and creative. I am going to seal it but not until I make a
decision about adding the black square....