Monday, January 05, 2009

A knotty situation

Remember how I said I was just itching to get busy painting the bead board down stairs?

And that I liked the white bead board in the down stairs sun room?
Well....I was a little curious about what was under that white paint.
The was one little chip; using my thumb nail I scraped a bit of the paint off the paneling.

Then I used a piece of plastic to clear a bigger area.
Just as I thought: knotty pine bead board was under that paint.
A nice light knotty pine.
(Not the dark or yellowish kind!)
With a mellow satin finish that looks to be in great shape.
Happy am I with this discovery.

I have know six people with knotty pine in there houses, and all of them were spunky and gracious women that I admired. (Corrine, Jackie, Margaret B., Betty E, Moness W., and my MIL) For me, knotty pine brings back good memories of those ladies.

And since few San Diego homes seemed to have basements (actually, NO San Diego homes have basements, if they did they would be underwater) the idea of a knotty pine panelled basement seems rather charming to me.

Curiously, whenever knotty pine panelling in the basement is mentioned in other geographical location, the reaction generally is the sound of retching, followed by three words:
Shockingly, I did some research (imagine that!) about knotty pine paneling in homes, and while there are some kpp lovers out there, for the most part the opinion is that it is a dated and unlovely home feature.
And that is from the sites that are trying to remain neutral on the subject.
The other sites...well, let's just say the topic of knotty pine apparently elicites strong feelings.
Strong NEGATIVE feelings.
I met the lady who lives across the street from our new house; she invited me in and when I admired her bead board walls, she was quick to inform me that the whole house used to be knotty pine, but she had, of course, had it ALL painted over. To "brighten up" the place.
Now whoever painted over our knotty pine did it as a "lick and promise" fix up.
No sanding of the wood finish before starting, no primer, no second coat.
Just slap it on and done.
I'm thinking that if I want to have it stay painted, I have some work cut out for me.
Stripping of the faulty coat, sanding of the wood, sealing of the wood (those knots apparently can bleed through the toughest coat of paint...) and then more coats of paint, two or three at least.
I (and Bernie and Jeff) like the idea of having a somewhat rustic cabin like feeling in the basement.
After all, our house is only 15 minutes from Snowbird, Solitude, Brighton and Alta ski resorts.
Why shouldn't our house have a ski lodge feeling down stairs?
Now I know getting the paint out of the joints will be a bugger. Maybe I will just do what I can do and let the look be even more distressed and aged because of it.
What is funny though to me is knowing how many people are out there would be totally distressed to learn that I am contemplating NOT re-painting it.
So let me hear it from you.
Do you have a strong opinion about knotty pine?
What memories and feelings come to you when you think about knotty pine?
Are you aware of the current and sudden trendiness of knotty alder cabinets that looks just like knotty pine to me?
And can you imagine that after all the years when knotty pine was THE thing to have in a kitchen that now you can't even BUY knotty pine cabinets anymore?


Anonymous said...

Wow. It is a shame they painted it in the first place, at least all of it. I don't see anything wrong with having the knotty pine "natural," (it would be a nice look with that brick fireplace) but getting it there may actually be more work than sanding and painting, I think. Debbie

Unknown said...

I love the rustic lodge look! I'm with you. DON"T repaint it. Just take the paint off and go natural.

This is the best idea yet!

Anonymous said...

You're correct in that repainting that paneling would be a labor-intensive job. So would removing the paint, but not nearly so. Removing the paint and keeping the kpp would considerably darken the room, but with windows (or sliders) and the appropriate decor and accents, that is easily remedied. (After all, I'm the one who painted a small bedroom in a really dark M.Stewart "Ink!")

I love natural wood, even if it's knotty pine. The favorite of all my houses had rough cedar reverse board-and-batten walls in the large family room, and I loved it (except for vacuuming the walls)! The kpp does date a home, but what's wrong with emphasizing a house's heritage?

Remove the paint - keep the natural wood!

Lovella ♥ said...

oh yes. . .it will be a bit of work, I am thinking of all the tools and bits of sand paper that might help. Clearly they did not primer the knotty pine first and that will help you clear the old coat of paint.
In our bungalow, there was some really ugly panneling that was beyond help and we painted it. . and never regretted it in the family room. . but your wood looks to be in awesome shape.

Islandsparrow said...

I like the wood look - especially in a family room. It will be a nuisance to strip the old paint off, but worth it I think.

Marie Christopher said...

I am in agreement...I love the knotty pine - much more "homey". Over the years, I have found myself disagreeing with a lot of the so-called "fashion" redecorating. I like older furniture - much of the "new" stuff is way too uncomfortable; I appreciate things that have a history. The woodwork in my current house was originally a beautiful wood-stain - but now it has about three coats of white in some rooms and tan in other rooms. Since I am only renting the house, I can't change it back to the original look, but I would if I could.

Janitha said...

I think that wood panel walls belong in a cabin in the mountains. Yes you live close to the mountains but still in the city, so quite not the same thing.... ;-) It is charming but I think you personally would get tired of it? With the restricted light source from outside, since it is in the basebent, I think it could become a very dark place. I think you should paint a lighter color on the walls that still can have some earth tones to give it a natural look.

Anonymous said...

i'm kind of a natural gal, but i love the look of real wood, especially if it hasn't been stained into some weird color. :)

i think the basement would be really warm and inviting with the pine.