the dawning of the candy-striped awning

Two years ago, we (including my mom and sisters) painted the exterior of our house. To gain access to the eaves of the back awning, we were incredibly clever and removed the hardware, allowing the awning to drop down and let the ladder set against the house over top of it.

That might be where the cleverness of it all ended, considering that we propped it back up into place without replacing the screws that mounted it into the bracket on the house. Later that summer, a storm Dorothied it up and off the house, dropping it cleanly into the backyard missing both the main power and the Google Fiber lines.


Since it was off the house, still intact, we might as well paint it before it goes back on the house. As well, I was still painting window trim and eaves above the back steps.

Into the basement it went. Then life happened.

That was two years ago. In that time, we learned how very much beneficial it was to have that awning on the back of our house. One: rain comes into the kitchen if the door is open during a storm, which is the perfect time to have the back door open… Two: The back of the house faces West. While we have two mulberry trees blocking most of the heat of the setting sun, the lack of awning does step up the summer heat in the kitchen. Three: the previously mentioned mulberries. The awning keeps most of the berries off of the concrete steps, which helps to minimize the purple paw-prints tracked into the kitchen. Minimize. Nothing. I mean nothing… stops that from happening. (Soooooo much purple…)


Now it is now. And I have a two week staycation. And it is time to get that awning back onto the house.

But it is dirty. And it is dingy. And our house is now periwinkle with deep red doors. Yes, periwinkle: that beautiful point of merger between blue and lavender and grey, any of which incidentally can appear on the exterior depending on the time of day/year…

This is our brilliant, and silly, and lovely wabi-sabi cottage. Our little hobbit house. And it needs an awning as brilliant, and as silly. As it turns out, Rustoleum makes a red spray enamel that is such a perfect match to our doors that I cannot ignore the option.

So entered into my mind our candy-striped awning. Perhaps too silly, but it is the back of the house, I reasoned. Automatic tone-down, right? Right?


Yesterday, I dug the beast out of the basement, popped the upper row of slats off of the frame, and hosed it down. This morning, I grabbed a scrub brush and bucket and removed the more stubborn dirt. The warmth of the day helped speed the drying and off I went with the spray paint.


Half of the upper slats are finished. And one side of the remainder of the assembly is as well. Back to it in the morning, but I did sneak one loose slat down to the drying awning to check out the contrast.


I am no longer afraid. This! This is the awning fit for our lovely little hobbit house, our adorable little wabi-sabi cottage.

This. is. perfect.


Understandably, it may not hold up well over time. We are in a region prone to hail. And the new paint shows some of the existing dings and dents. But new paint tends to highlight my dings and dents too, so I can relate. It is a good fit.

Long term, we would love some cloth awnings in that delicious red, but this is a great placeholder, sitting in its worn history with a bright new coat, shielding us from wind and sun and rain as we soak in our wabi-sabi life.

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