Painting 6 different colored Adirondack Chairs in record time?

Loving my six greeny-yellowy-grassy-appley- not white, and no longer red, Adirondack chairs. There’s a reason these iconic chairs of summer are typically painted white-no doubt about it-they are one big fat pain in the neck to paint.

6 white chairs in a row is too much white in my summer scene. This combination, of varied yellow-greens, makes a softer version of the trend toward a multicolored look.


It took me a while, but I love how these colors melt into the landscape, and twinkle against the bright blue of the river in the morning.

The detail on these chairs does vary, and each of mine, has exactly 22 nooks and 14 crannies to paint. By the time I got to the third chair, I was committed to the idea of setting a speed record for painting a single Adirondack chair. Since I started this project to distract myself from scratching at an annoying case of Shingles, my time didn’t really matter all that much, which is good, because my research proved there is in fact, no fast way to paint an Adirondack chair. (so there HGTV)

Here are a few tips to keep the job as simple as possible:

  1. Bring at least 3 different size brushes to the painting party, each for it’s own intended annoyingly hard to reach area. Here are the 3 I chose-one for the end grain, one for between the slats, and the best brush I cared to ruin, for the flat work.
  2. Use your crummy brushes-the rough grain, and the smash and bash brushwork necessary to get into the nooks and crannies will ruin a good brush.
  3. After you wash the chairs well and sand as needed, if you decide to prime ( I did), tint the primer to a close approximation of the color, otherwise, you need to work harder on the undersides, and the nooks and the crannies, on the finish coat.
  4. If you’re out to set a speed painting record, turn the chair upside down and paint every single thing you can see and get to, from this side first. I made the best time when I stuck to one brush at a time, but this takes discipline-not my strong suit…. Don’t try to cheat underneath to save time either-you’d be surprised how much of the underneath you can see from the other side of the lawn.
  5. Keep the brushes you’re not using in water while you work so they won’t dry up while waiting for their 30 minutes in the spotlight.
  6. If your chairs will endure the winter outside, an extra coat of paint and hard sanding on the flatter surfaces, where the snow and ice will work their paint stripping evil, may help.


Like the colors? I bought 5, and mixed number 6 from a combination of the leftovers.


So how long does it take a speedy painter with 3 brushes and 30 years of experience to paint a single Adirondack chair? I’ll send a free copy of my book, Color Saves The Day, to whoever can guess-and here’s a hint-It’s an embarrassingly long time even if I allowed for a few time outs for scratching.


And BTW-don’t talk to me about rollers, or foam brushes, or brushes without handles either; my Shingles have me feeling especially harassed by drips, which is all you’ll have without a proper brush.

Stay colorful!-xxlu


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