It’s the middle of a corporate DIY day at the Habitat for Humanity Halton-Mississauga ReVive Centre, and people are huddled around a long rectangular table. The wooden chairs and tables they’ve been repurposing—sanding and painting a sleek black—are around the room in various stages of completion. Up until this point in the day, corporate volunteers have been diligently working on repurposing furniture; now they’re going to try their hand at a smaller project.
In the spirit of saving product from landfills—and having fun while doing it—Sherian Groppini has organized a DIY barn wood painting project for today’s CUMIS employees at the ReVive Centre. Sherian, the Canadian distributor of HGTV’s Cari Cucksey’s RePurpose paint, leads this activity for all of the corporate teams at the ReVive Centre.
The project starts with “Any kind of board, something that we might be throwing out. We often use a palette board because it’s just roughed-up wood, but it’s really super durable and doesn’t mind being outside,” Sherian explains.
Each build participant has their own square of barn wood. The first step is to paint it white; Crisp Linen White, to be exact. Instead of watching paint dry, Sherian introduces a name-game. With laughter and smile abound, the twenty minutes of drying time passes quickly. The next step in the DIY is to use a dry brush to paint on colours. The dry brush prevents stipple marks, which Sherian says helps to give the barn wood an authentic feel. “In nature, you’re not going to see those stipple marks,” she says.
To paint with the dry brushes, Sherian recommends maneuvering your brush so that you’re already in motion when the brush touches the surface. “The lovely thing about a dry brush is that it will pick up every imperfection in your wood, every little nick and dent, and that kind of highlights it—but that’s what you want,” Sherian says.
Sherian has a few favourite shades to dry brush over the white paint: Cast-Iron Kettle, a charcoal grey, then Cocoa, which she describes as “coffee with cream,” and, finally, Flannel Grey. Painted on in that order, the colours give the barn wood a “beachy, worn-out look.” Although this is the tried and true colour combo, sometimes Sherian likes to experiment with other colours. For the summer, she says she likes to add blue or green instead of the grey or brown.
And there you have it! A finished, rustic piece of barn wood—all DIYed by you! Using Sherian’s techniques—and the fantastic colours in the RePurpose paint line—the possibilities are truly endless. What will you create? If you’re interested in booking a ReVive Centre experience with a corporate team, contact today!